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Viral Olive Garden Reporter Talks to CJR

cjrrr.pngJohn Quinlan penned a piece about the first Olive Garden to open in Sioux City, Iowa…in 2006.

The piece was a romantic romp through the magic which is the Olive Garden:

“So if you come here, you go to Omaha or you go anywhere else that has an Olive Garden, you should be able to sit down and have the same bowl of soup and have it taste the same,” Jason Hagarty [Olive Garden GM] said.

In 2008 it was picked up by Gawker and it when viral.

CJR’s Kate Dailey interviewed the reporter to find out what it’s like to be accused of writing an Onion-esque piece.

We called Quinlan for his reaction to the fracas, and while he was happy to chat, he was a bit disappointed. “I always thought the Columbia Journalism Review would call me after I won a Pulitzer,” he said.

It’s all fun until someone gets hurt…yeesh.

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