The Old Spaghetti Factory is a US based chain that originally opened its first restaurant in Canada in historic Gastown, downtown Vancouver. All entrees come complete with a crisp green salad, sourdough bread, coffee or tea, and spumoni ice cream at no additional charge.
Came here on Saturday evening with some friends.
I had ordered chicken strips for starters with honey mustard sauce. the chicken was a funny shape, bland and not really good for the $6.50 that I paid (Disappointed)
Anyhow, for dinner, I ordered Fettucini Alfredo with chicken. I like how the noodles are of various colours and all....but taste wise it was just ok (not great, but ok) They do bring unlimited bread and butter to your table, but instead of doing that, it would be nicer if they only brought one loaf for every 2 or 3 people and perhaps just make portion sizes bigger. They also include a small salad with your meal, and ice cream after dinner which is nice.
Asides from Ambiance, this place really isn't worth it unless you have a family with small children. We will be back only for the Ambiance.....one day....I'd much rather go to Anton's and spend the extra $5 and get a huge sized portion of pasta
Mrs C and I were in NW looking for chow with a couple of friends when we decided to try OSF. It was a couple of years since my last visit, but the place was about the same. Odd decor, reasonably clean, cheap food. The menu seemed to have changed slightly since my last visit, but most of the old favourites were still there. This time we had chicken parmesan and seafood marinara. Our friends had the same items. Our server was quite rude and kept trying to up-sell us with extra cheese, extra meat sauce, etc. I asked him if these “upgrades” cost extra, and he was very evasive at first but finally admitted that yes there was an extra charge. I told him not to up-sell me and he got very upset and started to argue. Luckily the manager took over and service improved dramatically. I took pity on the obviously deranged server, since the poor devil obviously did not plan on ending up as a minimum wage slave and likely aspired to be a cowboy or fireman like most kids do. It was so sad.
The food when it arrived was tasty if uninspired, and we accompanied our meal with some moderately priced beer. Portion sizes were a little small, but we expected that. As a previous reviewer remarked, they give you 3 courses, so between the salad, the bottomless bread, and the dessert ice cream we managed to get full. Plus it wasn’t too expensive, at about 80 bucks for all 4 of us including drinks and tip. An okay experience except for the poor service.
It's been years since I've been back to the OSF, and walking into this one tonight reminded me of old times - nothing's changed, from the slightly "old house" smell of the restaurant to the paper menus, to the decor. The food quality is similar as well.
You get what you pay for - At $10 - $15 per person, you get a three course meal. While the quality of the salad, pasta and ice cream leave a lot to be desired, I did leave with a full stomach. My seafood linguini in marinara sauce had a small amount of seafood, topped with watery, flavourless sauce. My friends' spaghetti and meatballs was similar to cafeteria food - meatballs lacked in the "meat" dept. and seemed to have a lot of filler. Other friend's pot pouri pasta (3 sauces) was reported to be ok.
The price is right if you're hungry, want food fast and aren't too concerned about quality.
Many, many years ago, I never knew there was more than one OSF. I thought the one in Gastown was the only one so I was so intriged by the decor and the ambiance. I was really blown away...until I found out there was a handful of other OSF's around. I went to the New Westminster location for lunch after a class at Douglas College and I was shattered!!! The restaurants are so fabricated that this one looked exactly like the one in Gastown! They even had a trolley! There wasn't much difference except for the service. The servers at this location are way more friendlier and actually start conversations with you.
That's the main draw here -- it is very affordable. You get a loaf of warm sourdough bread, your choice of soup or salad, a pasta entree and ice cream for dessert. Add a 1/2 liltre of wine and the total bill including tip for two was $41.55. The food is good, the restaurant is comfortable, and you get table service from energetic waiters.
It is a family friendly restaurant and the space is large so you don't need a reservation. It is right beside skytrain so you can leave the car at home.
The Old Spaghetti Factory never fails to please! I have eaten here on numerous occasions and the food is consistently very good and well prepared. The atmosphere is appropriate and the service lacks nothing. Considering the Factory's low pricing this is probably the best deal in town for quality food.
My husband and I got banned for life for complaining about the quality of the food. We ordered the Bam Bam Shrimp and Crispy Mozzarella Triangles which tasted like they had come out of a frozen package. After taking two bites, we complained to the manager about the quality of the food in disgust. This is when we were told that we were banned for life from the establishment. When asked for the reason why, we were told point blank that the reason we were being banned was because we had complained about the food. Even after offering to pay for the bread we had eaten (which was delicious and plentiful) we were told that our money would not be accepted and to leave immediately. Talk about unacceptably petty behaviour. Both my husband and I present in an alternative fashion and the feeling of being judged for it was palpable and part of the motivation for banning is was almost certainly the fact that we are 'undesirable clientele'.
To speak of the positives of the experience, not only was the bread very good but our waiter was incredibly helpful and got the manager for us immediately. Our complaint is, specifically, with the manager and the food quality.
Even were we not banned for life, my husband and I would never eat at this place again. We were treated poorly, the food was terrible and apparently if you complain you run the risk of being banned for life. The worst restaurant experience I have ever had.
I would simply never reccomend this restaurant to anyone. The location is terrible, the parking awful and the food attrocious. My fiance ordered spaghetti with a tomato sauce, the most bland thing either of us had ever tasted. I ordered the pasta primavera. The vegetables were clearly from a bag of mixed frozen veg, terrible. I was completly insulted to be served such a dish, and expected to pay for it. Steer clear of this guarenteed dissapointment!
I like the free bread and butter they give you and you can keep getting more bread. Also, a choice of ice cream or coffee is included if you ordered a main dish. My favorite is the Spumoni Ice Cream!
I had vegetarian lasagna, cheese bread and a cookie monster shake and i was impressed by the flavour all of these foods were great. However the salad was just a bunch of vegetables (carrots, lettuce, radish, and cabbage) thrown together not very well with presentation the downtown location has a better salad with spinach, apple and almonds.
The decor in the OSF is nice, but the food is very mediocre. The only thing they really do well is cook their pasta al dente. For similar prices I would go to Anducci's, with better food.
I do like the woodwork that is done in the restaurant. It adds a nice touch.
Admittedly, the Old Spaghetti Factory does not represent the best of fine dining and I don't normally choose this place for a dinner out. Having said that, they more than exceeded expectations thanks to first rate, quick and extremely attentive service by a gentleman attending to the north end of the restaurant at about 6:30 p.m Friday. The food wasn't bad either and certainly was good value. Keep up the good work!
We pointed out severe food allergies to our waiter and we were specific. He was AMAZING in how handled the concerns!
This is the first eatery in NW that has actually understood severe allergy and not sluff it off!!! The service from beginning to end was excellent!!!
Thanks to our waiter, manager and kitchen staff, you made our evening wonderful!!!!
We have returned here time and time again hoping the last experiences were the exceptions and not the norm and with each new visit, comes new disspointment. First off, the bread is always terrible. You cut the bread with the tiny little knife they give you and the bread squishes down to the cutting board, never to rise again. The bread tastes like it was made with little effort at all and is bland. The prices are expensive. The pasta sauce is lame. It is boring and basically tastes just like blended tomatoes heated on the stove. The mushrooms are directly out of the can and the garlic is not the real kind of garlic and is probably garlic paste.The waitress was freindly and that is about all. It is such a shame. Such a long term restaurant and a lower mainlain icon has never found itself and stumbles along year after to year after year relying solely on tourists and an older crowd that does not know any better. I am surprised they can even exist anymore. The place has potential but it no where near to achieving its potential.
The meal deal offered here seemed attractive coming in. Everyone who chose the minestrone soup enjoyed their bowl. I had the salad, which was okay, featuring small pieces of lettuce mix identical to the kind I sometimes use in sandwiches. Their seafood fettucine alfredo was disappointing, showing up with nearly invisible shrimp and scallops.. the saving grace was the spinach pasta. Other pasta dishes were reported to not contain enough flavour. Come if you are craving sourdough bread.
You gotta love a restaurant with a caboose in it. It has a great ambience and great value. The food is good, not great, but it's a nice place to go with friends. The endless bread is a great appetizer and very tasty in itself. The line-ups to this place on the weekends are testimony to its popularity. It is also convenient to the skytrain station in this rapidly improving neighbourhood.
This staff was incredible at helping my girlfriend and I make the two-year anniversary of our first date, which was at the Old Spaghetti Factory, a memorable experience! They were extremely helpful and accomodating in making sure the table we had originally sat at two years ago was reserved for us when we arrived, and they placed a rose I had brought ahead of time on the table in a vase so that it was ready when we entered. The staff was very attentive. This place always feels like a slice of home when I enter, and the spaghetti reminds me of the homemade pastas my mother used to make when I was a child. Love all the antique features. On behalf of both of us, thank-you to the staff of the Factory for helping us re-live our first dinner together!
If the recipes for the worst restaurant are the following: poor customer service, unsanitary venue, and food taste like rubber, then the Old Spaghetti Factory at New West has it all.
First, let's talk about customer service. Before my arrival, a lady was looking at a near empty restaurant waiting to be seated. However, she had been standing there for at least good 10 minutes and no one was there to find her a table. As I arrive, no one was there to greet and take me to the table. Finally when they showed my party a table, it was dirty.
Second, the food. No matter what kind of soup you ordered, it just way too salty even for my salt queen sister. The pasta is over cooked and the sauce taste like nothing but vinegar. The only saving grace is the ice cream.
The Old Spaghetti Factory is a joke.
The OSF is usually not somewhere one would go for Italian fine dining, but in my opinion if you're looking for decent pasta at a good price I'm all for it. The Manager's Special with mushroom sauce and mizithra cheese is the usual for me and I've been pretty happy with it. Last time I went the server was quite friendly and efficient. Overall, it's somewhere I don't mind visiting. I do have to say that the New West location is probably the least favourite of mine given the area, although that doesn't affect my opinion of the food/service.
I've been to the OSFs in Gastown, Whistler, and Victoria, so I know what I should be expecting from the chain. However, the New West location is the worst out of all the ones I've been to. Being a New West resident, and having fond childhood memories at the Gastown OSF, I really wanted to like this place... but I can't.
I've visited this location for lunch, dinner, and in the middle of the afternoon. Regardless of the time, and regardless of how empty the restaurant is, it takes a long time to get a seat.
The OSF concept is great: no-fuss spaghetti meal complete with bread, butter, salad/soup, dessert and tea/coffee, all for one low price. But while they allocate the effort in wowing the customers with the generous loaf of bread, garlic butter, ice cream and bottomless coffee, they skimped on the one thing that is in the name of the establishment---the spaghetti.
I've always wondered why they don't offer other kinds of pasta for a change. But no matter. In all the other OSFs, the spaghetti is usually cooked properly. Here in New West, it's always overcooked.
And the sauce... oh man. I have jars of generic-brand pasta sauce at home that taste better. The "fresh, plump mushrooms" in the mushroom sauce are obviously from a can. The white sauce has the consistency of glue and tastes similar to it. Perhaps it's the same in all the other OSFs, but the horridness of the sauce is far more pronounced in the New West location, probably because the spaghetti is bad to start off with.
I've had the salad once and that was the last time I had the salad there. It's the same salad mix as found in the other locations, but doesn't seem to be as fresh here.
Very, very disappointed.
New West location is not as bad as it's made out to be..We have our family B-day dinners there few times a year and other special occasions..One of our favorite dining places..My favorite is the Clam Spaghetti get it everytime and its Delicious..For starters I get the Onion Soup So yummy..and you have the all you can Bread..Drinks are always filled up when empty..and the best for last is there ice cream WHICH by the way is NOT no name..You cannot find this ice cream ( Spamoni ) in stores. Anyways try it out it's good food..Gas Town is a nice location as well.