If you love pasta, you have seven weeks to eat it until you are complete full. According to USA on Monday, Olive Garden is doing something the restaurant has never done before. The casual dining chain, whose business has fallen off in recent years, is offering unlimited pasta to those who purchase a “Never Ending Pasta Pass” which costs $100. The holders of the pass get to consume all of the pasta, salad, bread and Coca-Cola that they can eat in seven weeks. That means if you want to go to Olive Garden and eat pasta for 49 consecutive days for lunch and dinner, you are allowed to so so.
The 800-store chain hopes to attract more attention to the promotion with a $100 Never Ending Pasta Pass that you must purchase if you intend to participate in the unlimited pasta experience. CNN notes that the passes will be available for sale starting at 3 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 8, and will be good from Sept. 22 to Nov. 9. If you want to cash in on the deal, you should act fast because only 1,000 of these pasta passes will be sold online through the Olive Garden website.
If you don’t think you want to be part of this deal, there is another one that you might like. The annual “Never Ending Pasta Bowl” promotion will be going on at the same time. Diners can eat all the pasta they want for $9.99 on each visit. Last year during its “Never Ending Pasta Bowl” promotion, Olive Garden served 13 million bowls of pasta.
There are some rules that come along with the pass. Olive Garden says the holder cannot share pasta with others at the table. However, you may ask for a doggie bag for leftovers. According to Fox News, Olive Garden wouldn’t mind if you came in for lunch and dinner on the same day as long as you have the pass. The good part of this promotion for Olive Garden is that holders of the pass could come in and bring four or five friends along with them who don’t have passes. The friends would pay regular prices for their meals which means more revenue for the restaurant..
While this might seem like a good deal, nutritionists don’t think this is a good idea for people to eat pasta that much in seven weeks. Health workers think that because people have a pass, they will surely get their money worth by consuming more pasta than they would ordinarily. Jay Spenchian, executive vice president of marketing for Olive Garden says, “What we’re trying to do is get some attention. It’s sure to provoke a reaction.” Since the announcement today, fans and nutritionists have been tweeting their excitement and appalled disapproval.