In the past, dinners out have gone well. We meet at the place and leave when the meal is done. We have a nice time and decline further invitations to head on to a bar or pub.
We socialize at our house because I can control how much alcohol is available. And the dinners go well.
We've also done some outdoorsy stuff with them, activities that really don't involve booze, and this goes well.
I can accept that the plans were canceled based on something I assumed, but given their history, I can square myself with that. We arranged for the to have dinner at ours this weekend.
And to answer another question, Matt got a DUI three years ago. People are probably wondering why in the heck we hang out with them at all. I have some sympathy for Matt, who had a very difficult time after discovering that his wife was having multiple affairs (this was when he got the DUI). It's not an excuse to drive drunk and I'm pleased he didn't hurt anyone innocent in the process.
We were relieved when he met Kate, and he settled into a relationship with her after a revolving cast of (kind of horrible) women. He really is a good person, and fun to be around, and so is Kate. Just not when they're overly drinky. I have no patience for it.