Macaroni Grill opens Monday in Gainesville


Romano's Macaroni Grill opens Monday in The Oaks Mall.

BRIANNA BROUGH/The Gainesville Sun
Published: Saturday, January 21, 2006 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, January 21, 2006 at 12:00 a.m.
Romano's Macaroni Grill plans to open its 24th Florida restaurant Monday in an addition built near the main entrance of The Oaks Mall on Newberry Road.
The restaurant serves medium-priced Italian food - entrees range from $8 to $21 - in a casual setting. Chefs cook in an open "exhibition" kitchen and there is an occasional opera singer strolling among the tables.
Macaroni Grill will be open for lunch and dinner: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday. The restaurant phone number is 352-331-0638.
The menu features more than 35 Italian specialties including pastas, veal, seafood, steaks, roasted chicken, pizza baked in wood-burning ovens, soups and desserts. All items are available for carryout.
The restaurant is managed by Brian Stanley, who came to Gainesville from one of the six Macaroni Grills in Tampa, and there are 138 employees on the staff.
The restaurant, which took eight months to build from start to finish, is 7,573 square feet and seats 250. There is only an outside entrance, allowing it to remain open outside of mall hours.
At the end of May, there were 234 Macaroni Grill restaurants in the United States and Canada, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Taiwan and the United Kingdom.
There are 23 restaurants in the Miami, Orlando, Tampa and West Palm Beach areas. A Pensacola restaurant opened on Jan. 16 and the Fort Meyers location reopens in February.
Brinker International Inc. (NYSE: EAT) is the parent company of Romano's Macaroni Grill restaurants. Companies under the umbrella of Brinker International operate nearly 1,590 restaurants worldwide.
It employs more than 110,000 and system-wide sales approach $4 billion annually, according to its annual report.
Other local restaurants in the company's portfolio are Chili's Grill & Bar and On The Border Mexican Grill and Cantina.
Marina Blomberg can be reached at (352) 374-5025 or blombem@gvillesun.com.

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