Poll

Do you consider chain restaurants when going out to dinner?

Yes!, It's a restaurant.
68 (52.7%)
I just want to eat.
8 (6.2%)
I would rather eat somewhere else.
43 (33.3%)
I work hard for my money and want a true dining experience.
10 (7.8%)

Total Members Voted: 129

Author Topic: Going out for dinner  (Read 2975 times)

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MOM21SON

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Re: Going out for dinner
« Reply #30 on: November 11, 2012, 03:37:58 PM »
A few of your responses reminded me of when I worked in the service industry.  I had clients for many years, but they only came for the winter.  Every.single.winter they would ask me where to eat great seafood.  I would give them my raving list.  The next time I would see them I would ask if they went to wonderful seafood place.  It was always no, they went to seafood chain.

Hello!  Its Florida!  Fresh seafood!

Sophia

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Re: Going out for dinner
« Reply #31 on: November 11, 2012, 03:49:11 PM »
My problem with chains is that making everything the same is more important than quality, therefore much of the food isn't made on-site.  When I was a youngun I was a waitress.  I worked at a few chains and one local Italian place.  I saw food being made at the local place.  I only saw food being heated at the chains.  Although, I know the meat was cut in the Steak and Ale. 

Tea Drinker

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Re: Going out for dinner
« Reply #32 on: November 11, 2012, 05:48:09 PM »
I was going to say that the main time I go to chain restaurants is when I'm worn out enough that I don't want to deal with surprises (I know what I can get at a Subway's, for example, and won't have to think too much about what to eat). Then I thought a bit more, and realized that no, the main reason I go to chain restaurants is when I'm looking for a reliable cup of tea. I might get a decent cup of tea at a random diner, but I can count on getting an acceptable one at Starbuck's (yes, for 2-3 times the price, but if I throw something away as undrinkable, it's no bargain).

Do other people feel as though more local chains--when there are ten or twenty of the restaurant, but all in a small part of the country--are a bit different from national or international ones?
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Sharnita

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Re: Going out for dinner
« Reply #33 on: November 11, 2012, 05:49:05 PM »
Not all chains are created equal.  The same is true of non chains. I have been to some local places that served food I wouldn't serve a stray dog.  I have had food from local places that are wonderful.  The same can be said of some chains.

Hmmmmm

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Re: Going out for dinner
« Reply #34 on: November 11, 2012, 10:58:51 PM »
I sort of suprised that so many poster have found the non-chain restaurants to be more expensive than the chains.  I've always thought I got better quality for the price at a non-chain than a chain.

I finally remembered the last national chain restaurant I visited that wasn't fast food.  It was Macaroni Grill and I was shocked at their prices for the quality.  I could think of 3 or more Italian restaurants in our area that would have been less expensive and  tastier. 

kareng57

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Re: Going out for dinner
« Reply #35 on: November 11, 2012, 11:06:01 PM »
I think that I didn't really understand the question.  I picked "I just want to eat" meaning that I don't care whether or not it's a chain restaurant, but I see that very few others picked this.

AngelicGamer

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Re: Going out for dinner
« Reply #36 on: November 12, 2012, 12:13:45 AM »
kareng57 - I picked that for the exact same reason you did.  Sometimes I just want to eat and I don't care if it's a chain or if it's local.  That said, one of my favorite pizza places is a lesser known chain, Rosati's, but sometimes (like tonight) I want my stuffed crust.  So that means ordering from Pizza Hut.  If I want a Beef, I go to Mr Beef and Pizza (local place) or if I want it a bit more dressy, I go to Portillo's (chain).  If I want Chinese?  I call the place that's two blocks from me and they know our orders as soon as they hear my address, also a local place.  I'll still eat at a Panda Express if I'm out at the mall and have a craving.  Also, if I want pancakes at 1 am?  Mmm IHOP.  It's one of the few places around that is open that late.  But if it's between 5 am and 2 pm?  I go to the local place called Elly's. 

So, for me, it's more "I want to eat" and secondary "where can I eat?".




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violinp

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Re: Going out for dinner
« Reply #37 on: November 12, 2012, 12:24:51 AM »
We have loads of non - chain restaurants of all different kinds (from bar and grill type to Japanese to Italian), but sometimes we just want a sandwich from Jersey Mikes, or shrimp from Applebee's. If we're hankering for something, we usually eat it.
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AylaM

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Re: Going out for dinner
« Reply #38 on: November 12, 2012, 01:54:13 AM »
I usually consider chain restaurants first.  I like to have some idea of what I'm getting into.  So I tend towards "I've heard of that" first.  I don't expect them to be amazing, but they are much better then anything I can cook.  And I don't have to cook.

If a local place looks bright and open I'll try it on my own.  Otherwise I only go to local places if I was invited or if it has been recommended or if there is no chain choice at all.

Granted if I ever drive across country I'm going to attempt to eat at only places featured in "Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives".  I consider that a recommendation.

megswsu

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Re: Going out for dinner
« Reply #39 on: November 12, 2012, 07:45:45 AM »
Uggg. Practically *all* we have in this town are chain restaurants. However we do live in a military town so I guess it should be expected. Generally we try to go to local places. In my opinion, I just don't find the quality is that good at chains and I'd rather spend our money elsewhere for what I feel is better food. And we do enjoy supporting local business. However judging by how long the waits are at chains around here, I think we're in the minority w/our feelings on the matter! lol





Sophia

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Re: Going out for dinner
« Reply #40 on: November 12, 2012, 08:27:00 AM »
Uggg. Practically *all* we have in this town are chain restaurants. However we do live in a military town so I guess it should be expected. ...

Makes sense.  Chain restaurants thrive when the population is mobile.  People move to a new area, and are attracted to restaurants where they know what to expect. 

I like the opposite.  When I was traveling for work, in the evenings when I felt like eating out, I would just pick a direction and drive until I found a likely looking place.  I had amazing luck with that method, particularly in San Jose, Ca.  Only problem with the method is that it makes it harder to find the wonderful place again.

agentsmith

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Re: Going out for dinner
« Reply #41 on: November 12, 2012, 10:19:45 AM »
We mostly only eat at chains when on the road.  'At home' we eat at chains a couple times a year.   Okay, I lie like a dog-we go to chain sandwich shops reasonably often for lunch.  I seem to mentally equate that with 'refueling' not 'dining'. 

portiafimbriata

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Re: Going out for dinner
« Reply #42 on: November 12, 2012, 10:44:32 AM »
My husband and I don't dine out a whole lot, but when we do it's usually about what new place we can try next. As far as quick n' easy chain restaurant choices though, I am very fond of Noodles & Co. and also Five Guys.

My sister's family lives in a lovely, idyllic farming community in the middle of nowhere, but this means their dining choices are extremely limited  - Applebee's, Pizza Hut and McDonald's pretty much covers it. When she visits us, she is delighted by the dining choices in our area. Name a cuisine and you can get it, within 20 miles tops. We did go out for raw oysters and steamed mussels the last 2 or 3 times she was up, but that's not really something she can get back home.
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