Red Robin

Written by on January 8, 2012 in I Eat America, I Eat...Out with 0 Comments

( – Fairlakes Shopping Center, Fairfax, Virginia

How I heard of this place: My first taste of Red Robin was when it opened in Bellingham, Washington while I was in junior high school. This particular one was introduced to me by my husband, Chris, when he had a burger craving on our day out running errands.

Type of cuisine: Burgers and fries to start…Now patrons can also enjoy wraps, salads, sandwiches, mac’n cheese, prime rib dips, nachos and even pasta!

Ambiance: Bright, cluttered and full of random artwork, from photographs of James Dean to cats, the Red Robin mascot, to Nagel prints. Booths and table-chair seating are available for diners wishing to enjoy their meals. The space is loud with music, children and the bustling of the diners. Serving staff is friendly, bubbly and very customer-service friendly.  

What I ordered: To start, our long-awaited monster-sized Mint Brownie Shake ($4.49), of cool mint syrup and chewy Nestlé® Toll House® brownie pieces, topped off with whipped cream and more Nestlé® Toll House® brownie pieces. Knowing how I always get my free refill on bottomless fries, we requested ours before the burgers arrived in order that we could begin munching and not have to order an appetizer. For our main entrees, I selected the California Chicken Sandwich ($9.79), a tender, juicy grilled chicken breast topped with Provolone cheese, zesty guacamole, applewood smoked bacon, tomatoes, lettuce, pickles & mayo. A side of ranch dressing for my fries, and I was all set. Chris chose the Whiskey River BBQ Chicken Sandwich ($9.99), a tender, juicy grilled chicken breast basted with Red Robin’s signature Whiskey River® BBQ Sauce and topped with melted Cheddar cheese, crispy onion straws, lettuce, tomatoes and mayo. A side of honey mustard dressing, and Chris was also ready to dig in!

On a return visit, Sunday, February 19, 2012: Chris and I returned to this location on our way home from his birthday weekend in Lexington, Virginia, to partake of his free birthday burger. On this burger evening, Chris enjoyed the Prime Chophouse Burger ($9.69), “distinguished and delicious, this juicy burger is layered with horseradish-sautéed mushrooms, gourmet steak sauce, Provolone cheese and piled high with crispy onion straws. Served on an onion bun with creamy Country Dijon Sauce.” For me, it was a tough call between burgers, the croissant BLT and the Whiskey River BBQ Wrap. Then, when I narrowed it down to having something hot, my staple Honey Mustard Chicken Burger seemed too been there done that, and I went with the Burnin’ Love Burger ($9.59), “You’ll get fired up for the crisply fried jalapeño coins, tangy salsa and spicy Pepper-Jack cheese layered on top of our cayenne-seasoned burger. It’s topped with lettuce and fresh tomatoes to cool things off and served on a jalapeño-cornmeal kaiser roll with chipotle mayo.” With a side of lemonade (that, I just noticed, was free!) for Chris and two additional baskets of bottomless fries with ranch dressing, our bellies were full and our faces happy!

What I loved: I love the endless fries! Between the two burgers, the Whiskey River had more flavor and zip. The freshness of the California was noticeable in the vegetables and guacamole, but after having tried the BBQ sandwich, first, it left something to be desired.

Why I loved it: Quick, simple, consistent and free for your birthday! I guess we will be back next month to celebrate!

Cost: Average ($8-$10 per burger with bottomless fries)

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