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Do you keep a list of restaurants you've visited?

I confess to being somewhat of a dataholic. I use "HandyShopper" (great free software) on my Palm to keep a running database of both "wishlist" restaurants I want to visit as well as "checking off" the ones I've visited, with a rating of 1-5. So far it's showing 139 restaurants visited (Philly area only) with 47 on the wishlist.

Bride of the Juggler keeps a paper restaurant journal with notes and ratings.

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  1. Sadly no. I've had hundreds of wonderful meals and other than my home town and the city I work, I barely can remember the names of any place I've been unless I look them up in some kind of city-related list. No, wait except for Las Vegas. I remember every single meal I had there. However, once I remember the name, I do remember the meal and whether or not it was favorable or not. It's just I'm terrible with names - be they people or venues.

    1. I started keeping a 'paper' journal only in the last five years (as I hit my 30s) and regret not journaling sooner. Journal usually consists of quick notes, the receipt (not the credit card receipt, but the other when I'm paying), menu (when available) and the occasional torn wine label.

      With the corks I've saved from restaurants, I've made into trivets.

      1. Not lists per se, but my dad collects restaurant matchbooks, although they aren't offered at many places any more. About three years ago I started collecting restaurant business cards -- about 75% of the places I go have them. If they don't, I get a take-out menu or try and keep a receipt. I'm always surprised when I go to a back woods truck stop type place hundreds of miles from anywhere and they have a card when I ask. I'm sure I have several hundred from just the last three years plus the occasional ducking into a place I've been to in the past when I happen to be walking by. It's a great reference when I'm posting on here -- I can quickly include the address, phone and web site in my posts. I wish I had started earlier, especially growing up and during college when I ate out a lot more -- I'm sure I would have thousands.

        2 Replies
        1. re: MSPD

          How do you keep/catalogue your matchbooks? Does your dad have a way to file/display them? I'm very curious. A friend of mine made a gift for her boyfriend who also collects matchbooks--she made a display case of a shadow box and put his favorite ones in it.

          1. re: Non Cognomina

            The matchbooks are mostly framed in shadowboxes but he also has a large square coffee table that has 5 sections with removeable glass tops. The matchbooks -- about 500 of them -- are set inside about two inches under the glass. As an aside, he was in the Navy for 32 years so he had the opportunity to eat in a LOT of different places.

            I've been trying to think of a fun way to someday display the business cards, but for the next few years, they'll just accumulate in those Day Planner style business card holder notebooks.

        2. I keep a small wishlist in my day planner (I'm day planner obessive tho') and I admit, I highlight my Zagat when I've been to a place. Say what you will about the reviews, it's a decent reference guide to have... :)

          --Dommy!

          1. I just started. I add them in my calendar as I go.