Food

Olive Garden Opens in Snellville

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Olive Garden opens its newest restaurant at 1565 Scenic Highway in Snellville on Monday, Dec. 5 at 4 p.m. – creating 165 new jobs. The Olive Garden in Snellville is the newest restaurant in the family of more than 750 local restaurants committed to providing every guest with a genuine Italian dining experience.

“Snellville has been one of Gwinnett County”s fastest growing cities making it the ideal location for Olive Garden,”# said Dan Kiernan, executive vice president of operations for Olive Garden.

The 7,441 square-foot restaurant can host up to 246 guests and features a design that is inspired by traditional farmhouses found in Tuscany, Italy. Olive Garden design teams traveled to Italy to work with Italian architects Fabio and Lucia Zingarelli and the result is a restaurant design that recreates the warmth and simple beauty of a Tuscan farmhouse.

The Snellville Olive Garden has a rustic stone exterior, typical of the buildings in the Italian countryside, and an interior accented by Italian imports designed to make the dining experience here a tribute to the restaurant”s Italian inspiration.# Ceilings supported by exposed wood beams, stone and wood accents throughout, and terra cotta tile highlight the interior.

The bar top is crafted from lava stone, then hand-painted by artisans in Italy with a design created exclusively for Olive Garden; vibrant imported fabrics decorate windows and dining seats; hand-painted plates, designed by Lucia herself, adorn rustic stone and stucco walls; and the lighting fixtures are all distinctly Italian.

The restaurant also will feature a number of sustainable design elements, including recycled building materials, enlarged windows to increase natural light, low-water landscaping and energy-efficient equipment.# These enhancements are part of the Sustainable Restaurant Design initiative launched by Darden Restaurants, Olive Garden”s parent company.

“The Snellville Olive Garden is honored to join this community where we will have the opportunity to serve fresh, delicious Italian food in a comfortable, home-like setting,”# said Julie Knowles, general manager.# “We”re looking forward to delivering a great experience for all of our guests.”#

To recognize Knowles” role as head of the Olive Garden family in Snellville and to emphasize the importance the company places on its general managers, Olive Garden honored Knowles by setting her name in stone.# Travertine marble imported from Tuscany was chiseled with Knowles” name and placed prominently by the restaurant”s front door.

Olive Garden is now accepting applications for employment.# To be considered for an interview, please apply online at www.OliveGarden.com/Careers.

Olive Garden is the leading restaurant in the Italian dining segment with more than 750 restaurants, more than 88,000 employees and more than $3 billion in annual sales.# Olive Garden is a division of Darden Restaurants, Inc., the world”s largest full-service restaurant operating company.# In 2011, Darden became the first full-service restaurant company ever to be named to the FORTUNE “100 Best Companies to Work For”# list.# Olive Garden is committed to making a difference in the lives of others in the local community. As part of this commitment, the Snellville Olive Garden will participate in the Darden Harvest program, which has donated more than 50 million pounds of food to local community food banks across the country.# For more information, visit Olive Garden”s website at www.olivegarden.com.