My wife and I have been a fan of this Outback for several years but for the past several months the quality of the food, and in particular the steaks, has gone downhill. Now about one out of three Victoria's Filets which I order are tough and contain a lot of connective tissue. A true Filet Mignon is not tough and does not have such connective tissue. The fans of the cut know it is one of, if not the most, tender cut of all. They used to be very good at the Outback, and reasonably priced, but no more. In addition, in this time frame, the staffing has been reduced and many people are doing double and triple duty. The hostess is also a busser, the bartenders are bussers and table waiters, the regular table servers now have several tables, and during busy times too many tables. You can tell these people are stressed but they nevertheless are pleasant and do a great job of trying to care for their customers, albeit sometimes with considerable delays. During our visit last week we found out that we can no longer walk into the bar and seat ourselves, despite there being many open seats and nobody waiting for the bar. When we inquired, the hostess told us the restaurant had new owners and it was their policy, a bad one in my view. When I go out to eat I like to get an open seat at the bar, not stand around for 15 minutes or so on my bad knee, waiting for the hostess to finish bussing so we can be seated. Also, when we finally did get a table they now have those annoying Z**** tablet kiosks (TripAdvisor won't let me mention the name). They are a piece of work, charging for stuff you didn't know you had to pay for and in my view cheating customers out of discounts. I won't go into detail but you should read the Internet and TripAdvisor reviews before you touch one. And, when you server gives you the new owner's sales pitch about how 80% of people like to use them for checkout, the 80% part is only partially true. Many people don't like them and don't want to use them. Many others can't get the server's attention to check out (they are too busy with all of their tables) but when the server finally comes over it is the server doing the checkout on the machine for the customer. The servers are required to promote the kiosks and must have a certain percentage of their tables that use them or the servers will suffer bad reviews. We quit going to Red Robin because we dislike those machines and the sales pitches so much, particularly when we want to have the server make sure the bill is correct, with the proper discounts (including those that we qualify for and may not know about), and check us out. I understand the machines will only take a discount if you specifically ask for it and after all, they machine doesn't know if you look like you could be an AARP member or and entitled to that or some other discount.
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