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Olive Garden

 111 Trace Terrace Blvd
Charleston, WV
 

A regular stop

I visit the Olive Garden at least once a week. The quality of the food is very good, and the selection is great. What I usually come for is the endless soup, salad, and bread sticks. The selection of soups is surprisingly good, with the broccoli cheese being my favorite. I have to say, though, that the selection of summer soups is inferior to Fall and Winter.

Calamari - Calamari at Olive Garden

Calamari

Cooked very well, very fresh.

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A Taste of Italy

 205 Capitol St
Charleston, WV
 

A bit of everything

I haven’t been here in a while, but have very good memories of it. There’s a very large selection, and all of the favorites you’d expect from an Italian restaurant. The lasagna and chicken parmesan are particularly notable, with both of them tasting very fresh. However, their meatballs aren’t very good, which is odd because they always hyped them.

Chicken Parmesan

Very fresh and a nice, large portion.

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Aladdin Restaurant

 3024 Chesterfield Ave
Charleston, WV
 

A change of pace

Alladin’s is one of only a couple good middle Eastern food restaurants around. The pita bread is always warm, fresh and soft. It’s the chicken kebabs that I always go for, though. The chicken is very tender and seasoned amazingly, and the tomatoes that come with them are fantastic.The one problem I have is that the cucumber sauce is on the runny side, which is a shame as it’s one of the best parts of the meal.

Chicken Kebab

Amazingly tender, great seasoning.

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Famous Dave's

 2509 Mountaineer Blvd
Charleston, WV
 

This is the place for Barbeque

When we’re in Charleston, this is where we go for barbeque. Famous Dave’s is a legend locally, with the place packed every day. The beef ribs are large and meaty, and the meat practically falls right off the bones. The sauce is one f the best I’ve ever had, very dark and rich. And they don’t skimp on the side dishes, either. The potato skins are one of my favorite dishes here, as is the cobb salad. However, the other salads tend to be a bit sad and wilted looking. I couldn’t recommend those.

Beef Ribs

Tender and juicy, with fantastic barbeque sauce.

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Shoney's Restaurant

 3600 Maccorkle Ave SE
Charleston, WV
 

Only Alright

Shoney’s is one of those places you go for your kids, or for a very casual meal. It’s very standard grill fare, with all of the burgers and salad and potatoes you could want. So of course it’s not very exciting, or original, and the food quality is so-so. But it’s not bad, and there’s a really good selection. I will give them that their salad selection i above average, with the Asian sesame chicken salad coming out as a real contender.

asian Sesame Chicken Salad

Very crisp, put together very well. Top nothc.

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Captain D's Seafood

 104 Circle Dr
Charleston, WV
 

Not the best

I’ll will give Captain D’s one thing: they have a very fun atmosphere, which is great for the kids. And there’s also a pretty good selection. However, the food leaves a lot to be desired. I’ve tried both the fish fillets and the shrimp, and nothing tasted fresh or firm, as it should be. Even my kids wouldn’t eat it, which is unusual because they love places like this.

Butterfly Shrimp

Limp, didn’t taste fresh.

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Chili's

 101 Charleston Town Center
Charleston, WV
 

I'm addicted

I do have an addiction to Chili’s and their famous baby back ribs. It’s not just the ribs, which are so tender, but the sauce also, which is just the right combination of sweet and spicy. The Ceaser salad is also a favorite, because their lettuce is always much crisper and fresher than most restaurants. I also enjoy their bar, because they have a nice selection of beer, including imports (not just the usual suspects).

baby back ribs

The best around, tender and flavorful.

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Applebee's

 202 Kanawha Blvd E
Charleston, WV
 

At the mercy of my kids

So maybe it isn’t spectacular, and there’s nothing new or exciting that will blow you out of the water, but Applebee’s isn’t a bad restaurant at all. However, it’s my kids that are always dragging me back, not that I mind. The atmosphere is very relaxed and friendly, and the food is decent. Pretty much what you expect. The new specials are enticing, so I’ve also been visiting on my lunch hour for the burgers, which are miles better than fast food.

Swiss Burger

Great size, and very good.

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Lone Star Steakhouse & Saloon

 6515 Maccorkle Ave SE
Charleston, WV
 

A Good Choice

While this isn’t my first choice when I’m wanting a steak, because it’s just not the best quality meat, there’s certainly nothing to complain about here. The porterhouse and London broil is spectacular, and the fully loaded potatoes are something I always look forward to. However, it’s the friendly staff and relaxed atmosphere that keep me coming back about once a month.

Porterhouse

Juicy and cooked perfectly.

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Panera Bread

 2830 Mountaineer Blvd
Charleston, WV
 

A Regular Favorite

It doesn’t matter what season it is, Panera bread has all the choices I’m looking for. This is a favorite not only of mine, but the entire family. Everything is fresh and exciting, with a menu of items I can’t find elsewhere. The bread is to die for, as are the soups and salads. Actually, I’d be hard pressed to think of one dish I don’t adore. My one comlpaint, though, is that the selection isn’t as large as I’d like, and if you go later in the day your soup won’t be as fresh.

French Onion Soup.

Absolutely brilliant, so flavorful!

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