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Olive Garden Serves Booze to Child. Again.

By Andrew Chow, Esq. | Last updated on

An Olive Garden waitress accidentally served rum to a 10-year-old boy -- a mistake the restaurant's spokeswoman called "completely unacceptable."

The boy's mother claims she ordered her son a Wildberry Frullato -- a fruit-and-yogurt smoothie -- at an Olive Garden in Indianapolis on April 19.

But instead of a smoothie, the waitress brought back a 4-ounce strawberry daiquiri that contained rum, an Olive Garden spokeswoman told the Orlando Sentinel. The waitress realized her mistake -- but apparently didn't tell the boy's parents right away.

The waitress first told her supervisor about the Olive Garden rum mix-up, a police report said. The manager told the boy's family and assured them the child would be fine, even though he drank about half of the alcoholic beverage, the Sentinel reports.

The boy's family took him to an emergency room and called police, who described the boy as "very alert but a little shaken up." News reports do not indicate whether the boy required medical treatment.

If the boy incurred medical bills, his parents will likely seek reimbursement from Olive Garden or its parent company, Orlando, Fla.-based Darden Restaurants. A lawsuit alleging negligence is one possible way to accomplish that.

But Darden is apparently hoping it won't come to a lawsuit. Olive Garden's insurance company is working to resolve the incident with the boy's family, and company executives also plan to speak with the family, the spokeswoman said.

In addition, Olive Garden has fired the waitress who served the rum to the 10-year-old. Olive Garden serves alcoholic drinks in different glasses than non-alcoholic drinks; wait staff are supposed to follow established procedures to make sure they serve the correct drink to a customer, a spokeswoman said.

Mistakes similar to the Olive Garden rum mix-up have led to lawsuits in the past. For example, an Applebee's in Colorado served a margarita to a 22-month-old boy instead of apple juice in 2007. The boy's parents sued for emotional distress; it's not clear how the suit was resolved.

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