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California Dreaming in Atlanta Review

Updated on September 8, 2010

California Dreaming Restaurant and Bar

While in Atlanta, driving from mall to mall and just site seeing the different stores, we spotted 'California Dreaming,' which sounded interesting. We went back to the hotel before 100% deciding on a restaurant for lunch.

We couldn't find much about the place and decided that nothing else really sounded like what we were looking for for lunch. To me, California Dreaming sounded like a retro, 60s type restaurant with hotdogs and hamburgers, and to my boyfriend, the name sounded like some sort of California health food type restaurant. We were both wrong, as it was more like Cheddar's.

The food ranged from sandwiches, wraps, and steaks. I didn't see much else on the menu. Typically, we get an appetizer, but either nothing sounded good because it wasn't my normal tastes or it was because I was sick. Personally, nothing standed out, so I can't remember what was even offered.

The Service

The service was nice, with pleasant waiters and waitresses, but watching the bartender, she kept leaving the bar and not really tending to the guests sitting there. I want to say she was not only the bartender but a waitress for a table. I'm not sure if that's how they usually work, or if it was just because it was lunch. Either way, the bartender looked like she was slacking from my point of view.

What really got me was when a waitress came by to make chocolate milk for someone on the other side of the restaurant. She left the milk on the counter of the bar for ever. The bartender and other waitresses kept walking by it, but the entire gallon just sat there for at least 20 to 30 minutes, if not longer. To me, that's just not good.



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The Food

Being that I was sick when I went to eat at the restaurant, nothing on the menu looked any good. I'm sure there were plenty of options that may have been good, but nothing looked good at the time.

Even though I was sick and nothing looked good, I remember not seeing much on the menu to choose from. The options were limited. My boyfriend even said the same thing, and he was famished.

I wanted something light, like soup, but the only soup on the menu was the one daily soup, which just didn't sound good. It wasn't plain chicken and noodle or tomato basil soup, so I didn't want it. I don't remember what it was, but I want to say it was some sort of bean soup of some sort.

I ended up just ordering the dream chicken without bacon. The sandwich was ok. The chicken didn't have much flavor (I know I was sick, but my boyfriend tried it and agreed). The sandwich could have had more cheese on it, as I'm a huge cheese lover. Basically, it was a simple grilled chicken sandwich.

My boyfriend went all out for lunch and ordered a sirloin, which to me would be more of a dinner meal. He ordered the meat to be cooked medium rare, but received medium well instead. So instead of the entire middle being pink, there was only a teeny pink spot, which he wasn't thrilled with. When we got the bill, the waitress had typed 'mw' into the computer, telling the cook medium well, so that's where the confusion occurred. He ate the meat, but said it would have been much better if he'd received as ordered. The sirloin had been marinated for 48 hours in various fruit juices, which seems to be their signature marinade, as many of the meals mentioned a 48 hour fruit juice marinade.

Although I was sick when visiting the restaurant, I couldn't guarantee that I would go back. The options on the menu were limited, and nothing really sounded good. To me, the best part of the meal was the Cesar salad that came with my boyfriend's sirloin.

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