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Portion control when dining out


Raynickben
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The Dallas Morning News has an article today about strategies to keep your diet in line with the enormous portions often served in restaurants. We've all seen the nutritionists say that a healthy portion of steak should be the size of your fist but when we order said steak in restaurants the whole cow comes out.

Too Much on our plates by Michael Precker also quotes area restauranteur's feelings on sharing plates.

Amore's Mr. Hall says he was concerned about the trend toward larger portions a few years ago, so he began offering half-order sizes for most items at his three Snider Plaza restaurants.

"We were reluctant to do it," he says. "We thought it might have a negative effect on our sales. But it seemed to help business instead of hurting it." Still, if you want to order a full portion and split it, no problem – with one condition. "We'd rather bring it out on one plate and let people divide it up themselves," Mr. Hall says. "I hate to mess up the presentation."

Please Mr. Hall, mess up the presentation. I'd rather have that then mess up my clothes portioning out the caesar salad!

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I *usually* have the will power to have them bring a doggy bag right at the beginning, if the portion is too big. Which, is oh, 95% of the time.

Now, eating Big Spicy Noodles or Green Curry with Eggplants at Thai Nipa, all bets are off, I'm going till I lick the plate clean. I have yet to have the willpower to stop. But I don't bother to order fries with a burger anymore, there just isnt enough room. Most the time, I have to split the burger in half and save it for later. Its a real problem, its so easy to just eat until there's no food left on the plate. Thats why I try to have it removed from the plate before I start.

More and more, I find myself ordering an appetizer as an entree, or an appetizer and splitting an entree. Its really getting out of hand!

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Almost as bad as the overstuffing is the waste that follows from the restauranteurs' tendency to try and awe the diner with a huge portion. How many french fries, baskets of bread, tortillas etc. are going in the trash each night?

Nam Pla moogle; Please no MacDougall! Always with the frugal...

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Presentation? I don't understand see what huge size portions have to do with presentation. Plenty of restaurants serve beautifully styled food in small portions.

I think some restaurants try to compensate for poor quality of food with larget quantity. In many cases I'd be willing to pay 75% of the price for 1/2 the portion, but I suspect that this would lower the margin on the dish.

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I think some restaurants try to compensate for poor quality of food with larget quantity.

Excellent point!

I will never forget the one and only time I went to a certain Mexican establishment which requires you to raise a flag when you want MORE.

More of that fine slop sir? Uh, no.

Regardless if I am in a fine dining establishment or a noisy family restaurant with the kids I always get a sinking feeling when the server puts a massive plate overflowing with food in front of me. My initial thought is "I'm going to be wasting some money here" and the second thought is "why didn't I just order two appetizers" and my third thought is "can this be reheated?". It requires too much thinking!

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It amazes me that as increasing numbers of people -- and their doctors -- have become more conscientious about what we eat, food purveyors continue to increase the portion size on your plate. I only hope that the trend toward half portions will expand -- even at 75% of the full size price. Better that than the inevitable expansion we would all experience if we ate every bite on those overloaded plates.

How many of us can sit down and eat a pound and half of food at one meal?

It has become less appetizing to order an appetizer when you know you won't be able to finish the main course.

If I do order a regular meal, as opposed to a half portion, or smaller choices from soup/salad/appetizers, doggie bags are it for me when the food just goes on and on.

Judith Love

North of the 30th parallel

One woman very courteously approached me in a grocery store, saying, "Excuse me, but I must ask why you've brought your dog into the store." I told her that Grace is a service dog.... "Excuse me, but you told me that your dog is allowed in the store because she's a service dog. Is she Army or Navy?" Terry Thistlewaite

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Its everywhere, its everywhere!! Our lab meeting gets "catered".

We got box lunches from Schlotzsky's, this time. I had ordered a *small* sandwich. What I got was some supersized deal. It was huge!!! I had to immediatly wrap half in the deli sheet and put it in the fridge. It came with cookie and chips. Half a sandwich, half a cookie and a whole bag of chips later :blush:

I was stuffed. I can't fathom eating that whole thing anymore. 10 years ago, I'da scarfed it all down. Gotta love gettin' older! Its hard to get over the mindset of clearing your plate, or "getting your money's worth". Especially when its free... go FIGURE! But regardless, it really is hard to have all that food and not just keep picking at it.

One way I justify the "getting my money's worth" is taking home the stuff that will reheat, and giving myself a stern talking to for the rest. "Is it really getting your money worth if you have to go buy a size larger wardrobe? Hmmmmmmmm??. "

Usually works for me, usually..... :hmmm:

I know it aint gonna work for me tonight. I'm trying out a new lebanese place in Ft. Worth. New to me, anyway. I can't WAIT!!!!.

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