Olive Garden is bringing back its $100 all-you-can-eat-for-seven-weeks deal, aiming for the same buzz it generated last time.
One thousand Never Ending Pasta Passes will go on sale on the Darden Restaurant chain’s website starting Thursday afternoon; an additional 1,000 “family" passes will also be available for $300 each. The passes entitle the bearer to as much protein-topped pasta and soda as they want until Nov. 9. The pasta can be topped with chicken, shrimp or the other meat options available to customers paying regular prices for their meals.
The first time Olive Garden ran the promotion, passes sold out in less than an hour. The offer reportedly drew 550,000 visits to Olive Garden’s website.
At least 50 buyers resold their coupons on eBay and other auction sites for as much as $300 until Olive Garden clarified that only the original purchaser could wield the pass.
The promotion became a social sensation, mentioned by talk-show hosts and figuring heavily into social-media conversations and blogged commentary. The passes were offered at the same time as this year’s version.
Last year’s offer triggered a run of all-you-can-eat promotions and sweepstakes, including a Coffee for Life offer from Starbucks and a Pizza for Life drawing from Donatos.
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