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Old Yesterday, 09:29 AM
 
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On Friday night I'll drive by chain restaurants like Chilis, Outback, and Olive Garden and the parking lot is packed. I haven't eaten at any of these places in over a decade because the food isn't good and it's overpriced. Who eats at these places when there are so many locally owned restaurants that have better food for the price?
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Old Yesterday, 10:35 AM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mirotek View Post
On Friday night I'll drive by chain restaurants like Chilis, Outback, and Olive Garden and the parking lot is packed. I haven't eaten at any of these places in over a decade because the food isn't good and it's overpriced. Who eats at these places when there are so many locally owned restaurants that have better food for the price?
With a chain restaurant, you know what you are (should be) getting. With others, it may or may not be better. Also, a chain restaurant may be set up better for kids - eg more high chairs, etc.
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Old Yesterday, 10:42 AM
 
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And, plenty of people simply aren't adventurous eaters and have no problem with that. It may not occur to them to try anywhere new (or, frankly, with how much eating out costs these days, they might not want to try a new place they might not like and waste the money and possibly their weekly/monthly "eating out" budget on somewhere they didn't even like, so they stay with places they know already), or they may not like foods from other cultures (which, depending on the area, may comprise a lot of independent restaurants). They may be with a group and it's easiest to agree on somewhere like that because it's a "known quantity". They may have picky-eating kids.
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Old Yesterday, 11:00 AM
 
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Because they’re more predictable than one-of restaurants. Still vary from place to place, but the basic menu and type of food is the same everywhere in the US.
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Old Yesterday, 11:44 AM
 
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I wonder if it's an age thing too. I'm in my 30s and don't know anyone my age who eats at those places. My parents and grandparents love them.
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Old Yesterday, 11:53 AM
 
289 posts, read 108,767 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mirotek View Post
I wonder if it's an age thing too. I'm in my 30s and don't know anyone my age who eats at those places. My parents and grandparents love them.
Funny, you posted in April that you were in your 40s! Do tell us how you got younger!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mirotek View Post
In my 20s, I could drink a half a bottle of vodka and feel mostly decent the next morning. In my 40s, I have two cocktails and start to feel like I've had too much to drink. The next morning I wake up with the worst headache. And this is with top shelf alcohol and not college bottom shelf junk.

Does anyone else experience this? Many of my friends sip on whiskey or beer almost every night and don't complain of a hangover, so I'm wondering why it seems to affect just me.
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Old Yesterday, 01:50 PM
 
19,663 posts, read 5,312,442 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mirotek View Post
On Friday night I'll drive by chain restaurants like Chilis, Outback, and Olive Garden and the parking lot is packed. I haven't eaten at any of these places in over a decade because the food isn't good and it's overpriced. Who eats at these places when there are so many locally owned restaurants that have better food for the price?
We have two local restaurants within a 30 minute drive and they are ridiculously over priced.
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Old Yesterday, 02:01 PM
 
Location: Buenos Aires
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mirotek View Post
I wonder if it's an age thing too. I'm in my 30s and don't know anyone my age who eats at those places. My parents and grandparents love them.
Those places always have plenty of younger people in them too.
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Old Yesterday, 02:17 PM
 
Location: Elsewhere
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mirotek View Post
I wonder if it's an age thing too. I'm in my 30s and don't know anyone my age who eats at those places. My parents and grandparents love them.
And I am in my 60s and don't go to those places if I can help it. I am fortunate to live in an area with a wide array of food choices and independently-owned restaurants.

You never know. I have a friend who wanted to meet for lunch. I am ok enough financially that I will spring for a good quality restaurant. She is straight-up rich. Won the lottery once, inherited money from her husband's family, then she got more when he died. There is a wonderful Italian restaurant right in her town with delicious, innovative dishes, meat, fish, or vegetarian. You're not going to find tired old fake Italian dishes like fettuccine Alfredo there. Nice atmosphere, too. I suggested meeting there.

No. She loves Olive Garden. That's where we went. I think I had scampi, which was OK, but geez. We live in NJ where you can't swing a cat without hitting a real Italian restaurant.

Another friend of mine loves Red Lobster. WE LIVE SIX MILES FROM THE OCEAN AND YOU WANT REHEATED FROZEN FISH????? She likes the biscuits. You can buy the mix at ShopRite, c'mon.

Re the latter, I admit I was pleasantly surprised that the Red Lobster had three specials of locally-caught fish on a handwritten menu tucked inside the corporate printed menu. I guess they realized they have to compete with real seafood places in the neighborhood.

Ended up trying Applebee's twice. Ugh both times. I suspect it's good for people with kids, though, because I saw a lot of young families.

I do think consistency is the draw for a lot of people. They know what they are getting, so less risk with the money you have to spend for a dinner out.
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Old Yesterday, 06:42 PM
 
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I really used to like Chili's.. Back in the 90's.. They've really gone downhill.


Why anyone would go to Red Lobster.. Other than the cheese biscuits.. Applebees.. Nope.

I took my mom out today and our go to place, mainly because she won't eat meat other than fish (She does the pescatarian thing) is a local 'fish camp' style place. Here in the south.. Combine a color, and a nautical term, and you have a seafood restaurant.. Silver Bay, Blue Ocean, etc, etc. They're generally massive amounts of fried seafood, though I had the grilled salmon today which was quite good..

If I'm out of town.. I refuse to go to a chain restaurant. I want to go someplace local.

When I lived in the DMV area.. There was a chain, since closed down, called Chesapeake Bay Seafood House. That place was friggin amazing. Back in the early 80's, when you could get all you can eat crab legs for like $20. You certainly had to like Old Bay seasoning to like the place, tho.
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