Romano's Macaroni Grill

Twin Cities, Minnesota


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I went to a Romano's Macaroni Grill branch in Los Angeles, CA, but after checking online to see that their menu is standardized, I am writing a review for this location as it is the only listing for Romano's Macaroni Grill on VegGuide (also, I am from Minneapolis).

As a vegan who was going out to lunch with an omni, I figured that I would be safe at a place that serves pasta. Unfortunately, that was most definitely NOT the case. My server was friendly, but upon me telling him that I was vegan, I was left with no options other than a house salad. I was informed that ALL of the pastas contain eggs. I am still doubtful of this information, as pastas such as whole-wheat penne are very rarely made with eggs, but I was not about to order something that I thought might be vegan after being told that it wasn't. I was also informed that even the peasant bread, though egg-free, had butter mixed in to the dough. Needless to say, I was very disappointed.

I checked the allergen list on Romano's website, and there were indeed no meat-free dishes on the menu that did not contain eggs or dairy. I will try to contact the company to confirm the status of their pastas. Until then, I will steer clear of Romano's Macaroni grill. Service was good, but that means nothing when my only option as a vegan is a salad. It is not difficult to make pastas and breads vegan to accommodate a wider audience (including those with allergies), and it is disappointing that Romano's has not chosen to do so.

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Finally went here after months of consideration. I simply don't frequent many chain restaurants and don't give them my time. However, it's nice to have a vegan and meat-friendly place to visit with omnivorous family/friends.

All the pastas are vegan, according to a few sources, including our server. Also, I trust this source: for a few ideas.

We had the peasant bread (vegan) with olive oil and cracked black pepper. We both had make your own pasta: I had bowtie pasta with arrabiatta sauce, asparagus, sun dried tomatoes and roasted red peppers. My companion had fettucini with arrabiatta sauce, roasted garlic cloves, sun dried tomatoes and pine nuts. We requested no cheese, no butter, in case of unknown garnishes or preparation of food.

All in all, a carb-tastic meal. Not the absolute finest in the Twin Cities, however, an excellent cheap and easy meal to share with omnivores on a night out such as dinner and a movie at Rosedale. Or just shopping.

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First glance at the menu says "I love meat!", but the "build your own pasta" option (the waitperson gives you an order form you fill out), is fabulous. It literally creates an endless amount of options, between sauces, vegetables, noodle types (they even have whole grain wheat - yum!), spice accoutremonts. I would recommend you ask them to bake it like their "Rustica" dishes. I am a very picky vegetarian and pasta eater, and I was very satisfied with my food.

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