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Jan 18, 2012 10:32 PM

wrapping up the leftovers

I never used to take home food that was left over. Then on occasion I would have a place wrap it up and I would give it to the first homeless person that asked for change. Most often I would forget it in my car and it would stink the car up. In any case, lately I have been asking restaurants to give me a doggy bag. It is so good to have some good stuff hanging around in the fridge. For example, just a ferw minutes ago here is what i had. Oh , I hope it isn't a crime to mix foods from different places in one plate. I had Ebi Shinjo ( shrimp croquette) and fried chicken from EN, porterhouse from Wolfgang, pork belly stew from 456, and risotto with pig feet from Hakata Ton Ton and lechon kawali from Maharlika.. I must say it was delicious. I topped it off with a Perugina chocolate with almond bar and chamomille tea. I am no longer embarrassed or feel weird about take out. Just some of the mixtures of foods make me think I'm pregnant. Yes I'm a man but well, I may be pregnant. Do you like leftovers?

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  1. I have no problems taking leftovers home.....but when dining out it is not my intention to go strictly to a place that serves over-sized portions so I can bring leftovers home.. If the food is bad....I leave it on the plate to be disposed of.

    4 Replies
    1. re: fourunder

      I love leftovers but if the food is good enough, there usually arent any! That said, I let the situation be my guide. At a business dinner ... no. But if there is half a bottle of good wine, I will either send it back to the kitchen for the chef, or take it with me. In more casual situations, its cool. I draw the line at bringing my own containers, however. I have a friend who does this consistently (makes me wonder what else is in that backpack-sized purse of hers) and sometimes its downright embarassing.

      1. re: Cheflambo

        I'll admit to bringing containers for one example only.....not for the purpose of leftovers, but when I venture into NYC Chinatown for Dim Sum Brunch Sometimes when plans are made for a family gathering, life gets in the way and some members cannot attend and request items be brought home. In such cases bringing the containers for transporting home is better than using the flimsy styrofoam often provided.

        1. re: fourunder

          I won't ever bring a container. i once saw someone bring a zip lock lined bag to a wedding and take home a bunch of smoked salmon. I have taken home food that was left over a lot lately, mostly because I over order. I only take the dishes that taste good. Sometimes if i am eating alone, I tend to over order, because I want to taste a lot of different things. So there are usually leftovers. Business dinners usually not, but if I know the people really well, then I might , lately.I used to take meat home for my dogs.

        2. re: Cheflambo

          growing up, my family used to have dinner at mama leones in nyc. we barely put a dent in the huge chunk of swiss cheese that was part of the complimentary antipasto. while i thought my father was going to crawl under the table when my mother pulled a plastic bag out of her purse, he was hard-pressed to argue with her logic: "they're just going to throw it away":)

      2. I have no problem with someone bringing a container for their leftovers, it’s one less used that will go into a landfill  (but then again, I’m the person that brought basil to a restaurant to put on my Insalata Caprese)

        I’m not a big eater… but I like to order a variety of different things at some of the places which we go out to eat. Even getting two apps for dinner sometimes is too much for me, so I wrap it up. (come to think of it, I probably SHOULD bring my own containers)

        When I worked at one place, there was a couple that ordered takeout on a regular basis, and they’d show up every week with their own containers for us to pack their food in… not leftovers mind you, take out, full dinners. That’s 104+ containers that didn’t wind up in the trash, right! (literally, they were there EVERY week with very few exceptions)

        MY problem is that the leftovers get stolen by middle of the night refrigerator raiders, so sometimes I get cheated out of the reheats for lunch the next day.

        Higher end restaurants, the portion sizes are generally more my style, so I don’t have more than a bite or two left on the plate… I don’t ask to have that wrapped to go.

        1. Oh my gosh. It's never even crossed my mind to bring my own leftover containers!

          I love leftovers, and I love reusing things; sometimes in creative ways, sometimes just stuffing my face with them the next day (or two). I almost never intend not to finish my food. I try not to over-order because I know my tendency is to clean my plate, regardless.

          But yeah, I'll take leftovers home. There are some situations where I won't do that-- a business dinner, a very high-end restaurant with multi-course meals, if I'm not going home right after dinner, or if I'm traveling and staying in a hotel.

          I guess it's a matter of how much I like the dish, what I'm doing right after dinner, and how much is left. I'm not going to ask a waiter to wrap up a single ounce of meat or two lonely ravioli to take home. I try to be mindful of the plastics as well as the waiter's time.

          1 Reply
          1. re: egit

            The bringing-own-containers debate has been done on CH. I don't but mostly because I don't always plan ahead; really, many times I scrape my own leftovers at the table anyway, wouldn't it be sensible to put them straight into the container(s) I'll store it in? How sensible is it to use a styrofoam container for 30", then send it to a landfill for 30+ years? I need to put a small bag with a couple of containers to live in the car.

            I wouldn't bring home from a biz dinner but have brought home from all degrees of restaurants. I can re-purpose leftovers like a genie, and I love to. My husband loves the report on how many more meals/snacks we get out of the food.