When it comes to Italian restaurants in Yakima (not counting pizza places), it is slim pickings. Since Valley Italian Pizza and Pasta left the valley in August of 2022, we've been left with Zesta Cucina and Olive Garden. I love them both, but based on my latest visit, I might like one more than the other.

Earlier this week, my wife and I visited Olive Garden for dinner. Let me first state that the staff was great, friendly, and professional. The restaurant was clean and inviting. The cheese was where I had an issue.

The rest of the food was great until the server asked if I wanted cheese added. Heck yeah, I want cheese; I'm an American in an Italian restaurant!

Dinner Salad with cheese

When our server went to add cheese, she used the shaker (pictured below). I have no idea how fresh the powdered cheese was in the dispenser, but it did not taste as good as the freshly grated cheese I'm used to.

"When you're here, you're family… but I feel like the black sheep now."
– My Wife

I asked the server why the change, and she said she didn't know, but gave the impression that it is permanent. I thought maybe it was just her or they had run out or broken, but every server walking around held the same type of cheese shaker.

Cheese Shaker on a serving tray

The cheese didn't taste fresh, and the server, while shaking the cheese onto the plate, didn't have the control the original graters gave and powdered me with cheese (not a lot, but enough she did apologize). I wasn't mad, accidents happen, I was more bummed about this change.

Well, way to go, guys; back in November, word got out that you could buy Olive Garden Cheese Graters, and now they're not using them anymore! Is this the real reason for the change? Is this something they're just trying out or only temporary? Only time will tell.


One of our listeners chimed in on this story with some details from a friend:

"I confirmed that they only use the powdered shaker cheese when they run out of the fresh cheese. I confirmed this from an Olive Garden employee that is a friend of mine. So NO this is not a permanent change."
- David Adkins


What do you think about the cheese fiasco? Tap The App and let us know.

Get our free mobile app

QUIZ: Can you identify 50 famous companies by their logos?

How well do you know the logos of 50 of the world's most famous companies? Keep scrolling to see if you can guess which icon belongs to which brand.

LOOK: 50 Famous brands that no longer exist

Stacker compiled a list of more than four dozen famous consumer brands that no longer exist, consulting sites such as TheStreet, Good Housekeeping, and Eat This, Not That!, along with numerous throwback sites dedicated to consumer brands.

Gallery Credit: Liz Barrett Foster

Report a typo or correction

Got a news tip? Email us here.


More From KMGWFM