- Part 1 - A Table for One, please
- Part 2 - What can you expect at a Table for One?
The experience you will have with a table for one will depend on the restaurant you choose and even the country you are in.
Some countries after all place more emphasis on eating as a social activity, so you sitting in the corner with your one plate of food is frankly weird. But since eating alone is a growing phenomenon, especially in the West, some restaurants are starting to embrace the solo diner.
Some restaurants even actively encourage solo diners by seating you by a bar area where you can casually enjoy a meal close to, but not actually with, other diners.
While this type of restaurant does exist, more so in bigger cities, you are more often going to be seated at a normal table for two while your server clears away the second set of cutlery. In many way this is a good thing. You get a whole table to yourself and you can spread out and not have to worry about where to balance that extra side dish.
On the other hand, you can get funny looks from other diners from time to time. They will be trying not to stare, or at least trying not be caught staring. But if you catch their eye, you can see them thinking. “Has he/she been stood up? And they are going to eat dinner anyway! Is he/she a weirdo, coming into a restaurant like this with no friends or colleagues?”
Ultimately there are going to be people that think it is just too weird to get a table for one and dine in a restaurant alone. And they won’t do it.
The choice of whether you decide to dine solo is really up to how you feel about it. Do you think it is weird? If you do, chance are you won’t even try it. But for some people the choice of dining with family/friends or dining alone doesn’t exist. So their choice comes down to, are they going to be brave enough to ask for a table for one, and put up with potential funny looks. If they are, then they get to enjoy a meal out in a restaurant, like anyone else.
And why shouldn’t they? After all, why should a single person, or a person away on business, or someone who just wants to get away from it all, not be able to experience the undeniable pleasure of looking through a menu, ordering a meal, hoping it is as good as it sounds and then enjoying the meal itself.
Eating out is one of life’s pleasures. Don’t deny yourself this pleasure just because of needing a table for one. If anything, you might enjoy it more.