First generation, son of Italian immigrants (Father is a cook) here…
I’ll add my own thoughts to the chorus about Carrabba’s. It is, at least for me, one of those "better" options when you are travelling in an unfamiliar area, want Italian food (and neither your friends nor your "Roadfood" guide can help you out with other options there), and your dining companions are clamoring for a "known entity."
I was dragged there for the first time this year, and I have to say, I thought it was decent (a hundred times better than Olive Garden with its bitter dressing-drenched salad, doughy, undercooked "breadsticks," etc., and ironically, not much more expensive). I ordered simple: the caesar salad was not much to write home about, but those who had the "Italian" salad had what looked to be a good, fresh dish. I was surprised at how good the tagliarini with marianara sauce was…the pasta was cooked just right, and I had no complaints about the sauce.
Oh, as to the poster who mentioned the bread being addictive, I’ll admit that I overloaded on that, too![:I]