LongHorn Steakhouse Opens Ninth Location in Orlando Area Lake Buena Vista Restaurant Part of Darden's Sustainable Restaurant Design Initiative

ORLANDO, Fla., Feb. 15, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- LongHorn Steakhouse, part of the Darden family of restaurants, today announced the opening of its Lake Buena Vista location, its ninth in the Orlando area. The restaurant, best known for its atmosphere and flavor of the American West, is located at 8398 Vineland Ave.  As part of its pre-opening training period, the restaurant recently hosted a Friends and Family night which helped raise more than $1,600 for the Boys and Girls Club of Central Florida.

This is the first LongHorn Steakhouse, and one of 10 Darden restaurants overall, designed to seek Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification. This restaurant is part of Darden's Sustainable Restaurant Design initiative, which applies LEED standards across all new restaurants and when possible, restaurant remodels.

The 6,400-square foot restaurant will employ more than 85 team members and seat 240 guests. Scott Megill, a restaurant industry veteran of 22 years, will serve as managing partner.

"LongHorn is proud to open our first restaurant specifically designed to earn LEED Silver certification in our hometown community of Orlando," said Megill. "We look forward to helping our guests relax and unwind in an inviting atmosphere while savoring a great steakhouse meal served with genuine Western hospitality. We're also pleased we could help support the Boys and Girls Club of Central Florida and look forward to making more contributions to the local community for many years to come."

LongHorn's Lake Buena Vista restaurant will feature a number of sustainable design elements, including recycled building materials, increased use of natural light, and energy efficient equipment and fixtures. Darden's Sustainable Restaurant Design initiative is part of the company's broader sustainability efforts aimed at limiting business impact on the environment, while also enhancing the operational efficiency of its restaurants.  

LongHorn opened its first restaurant in Atlanta 29 years ago and has grown steadily – becoming known for its passion for grilling fresh, never frozen, steaks served in a relaxed, comfortable steakhouse atmosphere. LongHorn is known for more than its signature hand-seasoned Flo's Filet and the bone-in Outlaw Ribeye. LongHorn chefs love to grill fresh fish and chicken in addition to steak. Items such as LongHorn Salmon, a fresh, hand-cut salmon fillet seasoned with a bourbon marinade; fall-off-the-bone tender Baby Back Ribs; and Parmesan Crusted Chicken, two juicy chicken breasts grilled and topped with a parmesan cheese and garlic crust, are just some of the other specialties guests will find on the menu.

The restaurant opens daily at 11 a.m. for lunch. It is open until 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and until 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.

ABOUT LONGHORN STEAKHOUSE

More than 25 years after opening its first restaurant in Atlanta, today LongHorn Steakhouse operates more than 340 restaurants in 33 states. LongHorn is a division of Darden Restaurants, Inc. (NYSE: DRI), the world's largest full-service restaurant operating company. For more information about LongHorn, please visit www.longhornsteakhouse.com.

ABOUT DARDEN

Darden Restaurants, Inc., (NYSE: DRI), the world's largest full-service restaurant company, owns and operates more than 1,800 restaurants that generate more than $7 billion in annual sales. Headquartered in Orlando, and employing approximately 180,000 people, Darden is recognized for a culture that rewards caring for and responding to people. In 2011, Darden became the first full-service restaurant company ever to be named to the FORTUNE "100 Best Companies to Work For" list. Our restaurant brands – Red Lobster, Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, The Capital Grille, Bahama Breeze and Seasons 52 – reflect the rich diversity of those who dine with us. Our brands are built on deep insights into what our guests want. For more information, please visit www.darden.com.

SOURCE LongHorn Steakhouse



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