Redirection

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Is Eating Out Frivolous?

Someone linked to this discussion on Twitter.  One person wrote that women basically waste their youth working in a cubicle and spend the money they get on frivolous things like dining out.

Eating out is in general very popular nowadays. People will talk of the rising costs of living and yet, whenever you go to a restaurant, it'll be full. The cost of dining for 2 grown-ups in a budget restaurant has risen from ab. 30 to 60 euros in the recent years (basically doubled), and yet, they still have as many customers as before, if not more! Just as housework, home cooking is probably viewed as too patriarchal, like something out of dark ages.

I will admit, like everybody else, I do like eating out though it's more often lunch and drinking tea/coffee with cake, than dining since I frankly see it as wasteful and something which should be reserved for special occasions like birthdays. We do order takeout sometimes or go to a local Chinese. When we do, my conscience nags me: the food is probably not healthy and you could just buy a can of soup at the supermarket and eat it with some sandwiches for a fraction of the price. However, it's much less fun, if you know what I mean.

So while I don't subscribe to eating out being frivolous, healthy it's probably not. My readers will remember that 3 weeks ago I came down with food poisoning after dining at what looked like a decent hipster restaurant. Unfortunately, their hygiene standards weren't as up-to-date as they should be and it took me a better part of the week to recover.

And then I found this interesting twitter post:

"My buddy works at a well known restaurant chain and he says the oil from the deep fry has not been changed a single time since hes been there. He was telling me that its gone from yellowish, to brown and that its now black" - from an email this morning

Makes one think, doesn't it?

22 comments:

  1. Housewife OutdoorsOctober 1, 2019 at 5:01 AM

    We sometimes eat hamburgers or something on the go just because it is quick and easy. And very rarely we go to some fancy restaurant if it is a special occation. But eating out for regular basis? I have never seen the point. Waste of time and money.

    That said, my husband eats in their lunch restaurant at his workplace. That lunch costs something like 6 euros and is "healthy homecooking". Obviously it is not as good as actual homecooking, but my husband prefers it over sandwiches, and I do not manage to pack proper lunch for him always.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yes, when we have to go somewhere by car for the whole day we will buy lunch and sometimes dinner, if we find something suitable but otherwise it's special occasions, vacations etc. But even when on vacation I prefer renting an apartment so that I can cook. It saves money and time and you don't have to spend the whole evening in the company of strangers, plus even packaged food from the freezer is nowadays healthier than the stuff they'll give you in one of these joints.

    My husband only can get (free) coffee at his work, so I always pack lunch for him. And yes, it's mostly sandwiches but he doesn't mind:) 6 euros is quite expensive imo, if you don't mind my asking, what does he get for this price?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Housewife OutdoorsOctober 2, 2019 at 3:34 AM

      My husband works in health care centre, and I have understood the food is what they give for patients. You know, just ordinary foor: some salad, potatoes and meat/fish. If they have soup, there is also dessert. And then they have one option salad+source of protein. He said yesterday it was tuna salad. And of course there is always some bread available.

      But yes, 6 euros is rather lot for that. But my husband has a strange obsession with not eating sandwiches for lunch. It is weird since sandwiches can be relly fullfilling and rather healthy, but he has made up his mind. :)

      Delete
    2. Housewife, so he basically gets like a whole dinner for that price? Not bad at all:) But do you then eat another dinner at home?

      Delete
    3. Housewife OutdoorsOctober 3, 2019 at 5:38 AM

      Well, it is his lunch, but yes, it is a full meal he gets. And yes, he eats proper dinner when he comes home. :) And he is as skinny and fit as one can get.

      My husband very strongly believes in eating hot meals. If the food isn't too good, he just says: well, at least it was hot!

      Here in Finland people usually do eat two hot meals per day, lunch and dinner. Especially men rarely seem to have sandwiches at work. They may eat some ready made convenience food but it must be hot. Propably because making sandwiches would be too much of a bother?

      Delete
    4. We eat hot meal once a day (dinner) so it's sandwiches either way:) I do think eating warm is healthier and sometimes make a warm lunch but honestly nobody else does it so I'm like why bother?

      Delete
    5. Housewife OutdoorsOctober 4, 2019 at 5:35 AM

      I personally think sandwiches are fine, especially if made with rye or other wholemeal bread. But my husband is impossible with this: he wont have sandwiches for lunch. :) He is usually very flexible, but not in this one and only matter. :) I guess we all have our little whimsies.

      Delete
  3. While we were raising our five children we didn't eat out so much, too expensive for all of us. After all the children left home we out a whole lot more because, frankly, I was tired of cooking and cleaning up. After three years of being empty nesters, two of our children are back (one for her last year of college to save money, and the other who is recovering from an illness), and we are hosting two teenage exchange students. So it's back to cooking everyday for me.

    We did go out last night for the first time since the students arrived. I think it will be a once a month treat (for me!).

    ReplyDelete
  4. You have a very busy household, Rozy! Do the children ever help, btw?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, our daughter cooks one dinner each week, and she and our son take care of their own lunches.

      Delete
    2. It must be a bit like an eating out experience, only at home:) It's great to have someone cook for you for a change, isn't it?

      Delete
  5. Depending how you do it and what you eat, it can be economical. Breakfast is cheap, so no reason to eat out for that. I've found that it cost me at least $3 or more per serving to have a decent meal short of soup or pasta with little meat. If you want something heartier, it cost more per serving.

    ReplyDelete
  6. We eat out about once a month, although I probably add to that an additional once every other month when I go out with a girlfriend for a breakfast or coffee date.

    We have found that too often, when we go out, the food isn't any better than we can produce at home. As we are almost all pretty skilled in the kitchen, it's often worse than we could prepare at home so we are very careful about where and how often we go out.

    That said, I don't think it's frivolous. For a single person, or a couple without children, it might even be comparable in price if they cook with high quality ingredients.

    However, as your twitter spot notes, you never really know for sure what's going on in the kitchen where your food is being prepared unless you prepare it yourself.

    ReplyDelete
  7. A Texan, do you mean while cooking at home?

    ReplyDelete
  8. Elspeth, eating out here is much more expensive than eating at home, so even if you are single, you'll save lots of money. The cheapest Chinese takeout costs 16 euros for 2, it's 8 euros per person! Even if I go for organic meat, it will cost me less. There are 2 guys from New York on YouTube (I think their channel is called Brothers Eat Green) and they show what you can make for a price of 1 pizza or a Starbucks coffee or a McDonald's dinner. It's quite interesting!

    And yes, health considerations do play a role. I will add that my mother used to be a health inspector and that experience made her much less enthusiastic about eating out:)

    ReplyDelete
  9. 8 euros is (according to my trusty calculator) equal to $8.75 per person in dollars. That's cheaper than eating out here. Even in a chain restaurant you'd spend a minimum of $12 an entree per person which is (according to my trusty calculator) a little more than 10 euros.

    So eating out is just expensive in general, and yet it is rare to step into a restaurant over here without having a long wait for a table. My husband hates waiting lists and lines which is another reason why we rarely eat out unless it's takeout.

    Makes you wonder though how so many Westerners are able to eat out so much (in what is described as a stagnant economy). We know plenty of people who eat out in some capacity a couple of times per week, but we have financial goals that preclude that level of financial frivolity.

    ReplyDelete
  10. You've got to ask yourself, how conscientious do you think someone making minimum wage with a possible sense of entitlement and/or a victim mentality is, about cleanliness after toileting then preparing your food?? … I'm guessing not to concerned.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Elspeth, I think McDonald's will cost you less but this isn't really "dining out" if you know what I mean. Or you could buy a Turkish pizza/Donner or go to a snack bar which again, isn't really "dining" though you'll get enough for the evening meal. Chinese takeout is real dinner and eating out at a Polish joint will cost you around the same price (without soup or desserts). And then we have a Chinese diner close by which charges about the same. If you go out to a normal restaurant, even a budget one, you'll pay about 60 euros with drinks!

    And those are full EVERY EVENING! And then people complain that costs of living are so high:)

    ReplyDelete
  12. Robyn, yes, and then if they have it really busy they simply can't keep up with all the rules and regulations.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. just ick. I literally cannot swallow food from restaurants anymore!

      Delete
  13. We had a date night Wednesday. The first one of this particular sort in a while since all our "entertaining" food money has been spent hosting friends, family, or acquaintances.

    Anyway. We spent about $60 US dollars, plus gratuity. The first thing we noticed is that we actually had to wait for a table on a Wednesday night in October. We chose that night expecting the exact opposite experience, but the place was hopping.

    The second thing we came away with is what we usually do. The food was okay, but nothing spectacular. The service was top notch, though. We chose the place for the atmosphere and the scenery which was good for walking and talking after dinner, but still. At nearly $30 a person, spectacular food would have been nice.

    My singular data point, but it's related, so...

    ReplyDelete
  14. Very interesting, thanks for sharing! Yes, it's about the same over here, there are a couple of restaurants we like in the same price category (which isn't really that cheap), and they are always full whenever you go there. The food is OK, but I think the original discussion wasn't as much about how it tastes but whether the kitchen has high standards of hygiene, and of course it's something which we can't know for sure since we can't check:)

    ReplyDelete

No anonymous comments. Anonymous comments will be deleted.