Author Topic: 16 People On Things They Couldn’t Believe About America Until They Moved Here  (Read 43690 times)

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MrsJWine

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I pretty much expect any American "ethnic" restaurant--especially a chain--to not even remotely resemble authentic cuisine. It is kind of a joke. However, I still really love some of it. My Italian TAs always went into nearly violent outbursts anytime Olive Garden was brought up (can't really blame them, given how much emphasis they place on it being authentic in their commercials), but I still love it. I just don't expect it to be real Italian.


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Yvaine

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Here is the local menu, the portions are large but the prices don't increase when you get your bill.

http://outbacksteakhouse.com.au/index.php/foodandmenus

Oh!  ;D I didn't mean that US restaurants advertise one price and then surprise you with another that same night. This is a gradual thing. A place, for example, will raise the price of a soda by fifty cents from one year to the next, and increase the size of the soda by 12 ounces, but the extra soda only costs them ten cents. (That's an example and the numbers may not be right.) The same thing happens with some entrees.

Just looking at the US menu, they don't even have pavlova for dessert and that's not hard. It's also interesting to see how the menus are structured, there's a strong emphasis on sides on the US one  which doesn't happen here.

Soup and salad? Together? Really?!?

And I was actually asked how Australian that place is, it was the first time I'd ever heard of it so my answer was: "probably not a lot ".

Soup-and-salad-and-nothing-else is a really common thing in the US. Lots of sandwich-type places have a deal where you can get the soup and a small salad for a low price.

I don't know anyone who thinks Outback is authentic.  ;) It's kind of theme-park Australian.

Dazi

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A huge meal on my plate I find positively nauseating, this is also coupled with the 'clean your plate' mentality drummed into me since childhood. DH is trying to break me of this habit, thankfully. Most restaurants we go to have a decent amount of food on them that you can finish there without it being too much or too little.

Unfortunately, there are places that will pile food into your plate and sometimes have a rather high price for doing so. It becomes a game of too much food, we paid quite a bit for it but I'm so full I never want to lay eyes on it again.

Has anyone been to Outback Steakhouse? It's NOT Australian, about as Australian as an American flag, and it has made its way down under.

Here is the local menu, the portions are large but the prices don't increase when you get your bill.

http://outbacksteakhouse.com.au/index.php/foodandmenus

I'm really surprised by the prices on that menu.  I live in tourist central and just about everything on that menu is $5 or more cheaper here.  Just some examples, the mushrooms or blooming onion runs about $8, the grilled mahi mahi is $15, the hamburgers about $8, the chicken alfedo is around $12
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Yvaine

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A huge meal on my plate I find positively nauseating, this is also coupled with the 'clean your plate' mentality drummed into me since childhood. DH is trying to break me of this habit, thankfully. Most restaurants we go to have a decent amount of food on them that you can finish there without it being too much or too little.

Unfortunately, there are places that will pile food into your plate and sometimes have a rather high price for doing so. It becomes a game of too much food, we paid quite a bit for it but I'm so full I never want to lay eyes on it again.

Has anyone been to Outback Steakhouse? It's NOT Australian, about as Australian as an American flag, and it has made its way down under.

Here is the local menu, the portions are large but the prices don't increase when you get your bill.

http://outbacksteakhouse.com.au/index.php/foodandmenus

I'm really surprised by the prices on that menu.  I live in tourist central and just about everything on that menu is $5 or more cheaper here.  Just some examples, the mushrooms or blooming onion runs about $8, the grilled mahi mahi is $15, the hamburgers about $8, the chicken alfedo is around $12

I think the Aussie dollar is different.

Katana_Geldar

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I meant tips and tax, what you see on that menu is what you pay, no mental arithmetic needed.

And I think it's even less than the theme park version, sort of an American steakhouse that's been attacked by some Aussie flags and animals that decided to stay.

Saying that, DH still wants to take me to the one near us..despite the fact we have two places like it in walking distance.

Dazi

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I meant tips and tax, what you see on that menu is what you pay, no mental arithmetic needed.

And I think it's even less than the theme park version, sort of an American steakhouse that's been attacked by some Aussie flags and animals that decided to stay.

Saying that, DH still wants to take me to the one near us..despite the fact we have two places like it in walking distance.

That makes much more sense...shouldn't post when I'm dead on my feet.
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katycoo

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A huge meal on my plate I find positively nauseating, this is also coupled with the 'clean your plate' mentality drummed into me since childhood. DH is trying to break me of this habit, thankfully. Most restaurants we go to have a decent amount of food on them that you can finish there without it being too much or too little.

Unfortunately, there are places that will pile food into your plate and sometimes have a rather high price for doing so. It becomes a game of too much food, we paid quite a bit for it but I'm so full I never want to lay eyes on it again.

Has anyone been to Outback Steakhouse? It's NOT Australian, about as Australian as an American flag, and it has made its way down under.

Here is the local menu, the portions are large but the prices don't increase when you get your bill.

http://outbacksteakhouse.com.au/index.php/foodandmenus

I'm really surprised by the prices on that menu.  I live in tourist central and just about everything on that menu is $5 or more cheaper here.  Just some examples, the mushrooms or blooming onion runs about $8, the grilled mahi mahi is $15, the hamburgers about $8, the chicken alfedo is around $12

I think the Aussie dollar is different.

Not much different. Generally speaking we pay more but we also earn more - but Australia is also quite an expensive place to live.

baglady

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I think the word "proper" as it's being used in this thread means more like "appropriate" or "acceptable" -- e.g., "what American restaurants consider a proper serving." Not that other portion sizes are "improper" -- just different.

Some restaurant meals are huge, but they aren't standard everyday fare. That humongous Denny's breakfast may be the only real meal a long-haul trucker eats all day. For many of us who aren't truckers, the big restaurant breakfast is an occasional treat, usually on a weekend, when (a) there's time to eat it, and (b) we're getting to it later than we would breakfast on a weekday -- because we've slept late or gone to church beforehand. Essentially it functions as brunch (combination breakfast and lunch), because nobody's going to be hungry at noon after eating a ginormous breakfast at 9 or 10 a.m.

Which has me wondering: How common is "brunch" in other countries? Here in the U.S. there are places that serve Sunday brunch buffets that include both breakfast and non-breakfast foods -- eggs and bacon and bagels, etc., but also a roast of some kind, pasta dishes, seafood Newburg, veggies and such. The classier ones also serve alcohol -- usually bloody Marys and mimosas. They generally serve from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., so you can get breakfast food, lunch food or both, depending on what you're in the mood for.
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katycoo

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Australians love brunch.

Katana_Geldar

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Yes , things can be expensive but you save money in other ways. You can get away with having a car here provided you live in the right place. We have a lot of things within walking distance to us or an easy bus ride.

A lot of places do serve late breakfasts on weekends until noon, but it's not usually called brunch. Breakfast is my favorite meal to go out for, it's so leisurely.

Venus193

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Red Lobster has its most common prices on its online menu, but with a footnote that prices are higher in Times Square and in Hawaii.  Uno's does not have prices on its online menu so you need to go to your local one.  Where they don't have cocktail prices on the menu, but we covered that one in another thread.

katycoo

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Yes , things can be expensive but you save money in other ways. You can get away with having a car here provided you live in the right place. We have a lot of things within walking distance to us or an easy bus ride.

The "right place" is often unaffordable in Sydney.

Public transport, if you're using it for all your travel, can also be substantially more expensive and time-sucking than driving.  As someone who commutes a fair bit, though our public transport is relatively wide-reaching it is not necessarily convenient or reliable.

I work and take classes and live in 3 different areas of Sydney.  Once a traffic accident prevented my husband from being able to pick me up.  There was NO public transport option for me, other than a cab, as the last bus ran at 7:00pm.  Anything later than that - you're on your own.  there would be a lot I would be unable to do without a car, but I could get to work and home if my car went kaput.

Katana_Geldar

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I used to live in a rural area where the only "public transport" was a private bus company that seemed to run whenever it liked. And it only started running buses on wellness after I left the area.

MurPl1

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Which has me wondering: How common is "brunch" in other countries? Here in the U.S. there are places that serve Sunday brunch buffets that include both breakfast and non-breakfast foods -- eggs and bacon and bagels, etc., but also a roast of some kind, pasta dishes, seafood Newburg, veggies and such. The classier ones also serve alcohol -- usually bloody Marys and mimosas. They generally serve from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., so you can get breakfast food, lunch food or both, depending on what you're in the mood for.

Around here, almost all brunches offer mimosas or bloody marys.  What I find amusing is the Mexican brunches that have mimosas, Belgian waffles and enchiladas.  Definitely get a variety :)

MommyPenguin

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I think we need some more data, like on how often Americans eat out. I eat out every weekday lunch (so, 5), and three to four dinners a week (including leftovers from an "out" meal). I think this is relatively high among people I know; most people I know, especially families on a budget, do a lot more cooking at home and often bring food from home to work for lunch. I'm single and I hate cooking, so. I'd be curious how this compares to other countries.

Katana_Geldar, that's hilarious about Outback opening restaurants in Australia! We have an Outback in town and I love it, but I am under no impression it serves authentic Australian cuisine. :) They do make the servers greet us with "G'day," though.

I don't know any figures for how often Americans eat out.  But when my husband and I were married without children, we probably ate out 1-3 times a month, with one time being a sit-down dinner and the others being fast food (and generally cheap fast food, we don't usually buy the meals).  Most people I know eat a sit-down dinner at a restaurant at most once a month.  However, there are some people who eat lunch out with some regularity, as much as a couple of times a week, but I think that's more common in the more high-paying jobs.  When I worked at the library, it was not common for somebody to eat out.  At my husband's engineering firm, I'd say a lot of people eat out 1-2 times a week for lunch.  But most of the time it's fast food, not a sit-down restaurant.

I do remember being amused by the part in Bridget Jones's Diary: The Edge of Reason, where she and Mark get back together again and they go to a grocery store to get some things.  He is astounded at the price and asks how long the food will last them.  She estimates about a week.  He is stunned.  Here they are, buying groceries that will last them a week, for the cost of a meal or two at a sit-down restaurant (which is where he, apparently, had been eating all of his meals).