I have come to the decision that while I love eating out, I hate it at the same time. Honestly most everything I get in restaurants is not good for me, both in a health aspect and a wallet aspect. Also I can typically make something that tastes better and costs less.
Really the biggest bonus to eating out is that I don't have to cook it or clean the kitchen. What can I say? I can be an incredibly lazy beast at times. I get busy. I get tired. I get in a mood to not care enough to make something for dinner. I think this is sad because I love to cook.
None the less I will always find a time when I would rather eat out than stand up and make my own dinner. Since this is something that is never going to change I have made a few decisions about my dining out experiences.
First I have decided to try and steer clear of most chain restaurants. There are some small localish chains that I honestly enjoy, like Razzoo's. I am thinking more along the lines of the TGI-Cheddar-Chil-Bees of this world. Their food is so generic and not terribly good. Every time I eat at one I am incredibly disappointed in the service and the quality. It is miserable and I am left hungry and pissed off for having spent the cash on the meal.
So I have decided if I am going to go out it should be to local restaurants. It has the added bonus of supporting small businesses in my community. Also I typically like the food better and sometimes even the prices are less offensive. I have a couple of local Asian and Mexican restaurants, and a couple of American cuisine restaurants that I like a lot. Now I just need to find a reasonably priced local Italian place and we will be set.
I have also decided that when I do eat out I should be bold in my choices. I am pretty well known for eating the exact same thing every time we go out to eat. Most people who dine with me regularly could order for me without thinking about it. I am predictable.
This food is expensive and normally outside my calorie count for the day, so I might as well be doing something like broadening my culinary world while I do it. I mean if I am just going to get chicken strips I might as well just stay home and make them myself. Mine taste a damn sight better anyways.
The last few times we have gone out to eat I have applied both of these new rules. I can say honestly they were some of the best dining out experiences I have had in a while. I have discovered some dishes I really like, that normally I would have never tried.
My waistline and my pocket book might not always be happy with me eating out. Since I don't plan on stopping anytime soon, the rest of me might as well enjoy it.