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May 3, 2012 07:16 PM

How far are you willing to drive for a good restaurant?

I'm not talking special occasion, or making a vacation out of it. Just a normal night of the week or weekend. just because its not a special occasion doesn't mean compromises need to happen!

but my question to you is, how far is too far? at what point does going out just become not worth the trip?

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  1. two hours would be stretching it....but only if there was a reservation.

    3 Replies
    1. re: fourunder

      is there a particular restaurant you have in mind that youd drive two hours for?

      1. re: mattstolz

        I live in Northern New Jersey.....any restaurant in NYC or the Outer Boroughs could qualify depending on traffic......but to name one, Peter Luger. In New Jersey, there's a place about 90 minutes away where I would drive for their Stuffed Sole...Jimmy's in Asbury Park

        When I was younger and People's Express was operating.....we used to hop on the Boston Shuttle to eat at the original Legal Sea Foods location.....the flight cost $18.

        1. re: fourunder

          Were I in Jersey, I would say, Le Bernadine, Restaurant Daniel or Per Se, but would probably hire a car, as we love our wines, and would NOT want to be driving back.


    2. Drive? If I can't walk to the restaurant from my house I don't go. The only reason I will drive to a restaurant is to have a meal with siblings which means finding a rendezvous point that works for all of us that live within 100 mile range of each other.

      4 Replies
      1. re: escondido123

        do you live in a metropolitan area? where i live, within walking distance there is a ruby tuesdays and a longhorn steakhouse. possibly a dunkin donuts if ive really got my walkin shoes on. this would really limit my eating out!

        to pretty much never.

        1. re: mattstolz

          I live in a city of 150,000 but I live downtown. There are no chain dinner restaurants in our downtown but within a 15 minute walk I can have traditional French, Italian-American, Steakhouse, Irish Pub, California Modern, Sushi, Korean plus lots of casual burger and taco joints.

        2. re: escondido123

          Wow, you must live in Central Park.

          While I could walk to a few restaurants, I would probably not do so, as there are no sidewalks around the golf course, that surrounds my home, and there IS a busy street, when the golf course runs out - and one must navigate that. I envy you, but then would not trade me suburbs for an inner-urban home.



        3. nup, don't drive to restaurants - am willing to take one bus only (not two or bus+train) unless it something super-special.
          I don't like driving because then someone has to be sober driver! It's the being aware about it I don't like, not necessarily the only having one (which I often do, I just like having the option of having a second!) and there's no need where we live.

          3 Replies
          1. re: piwakawaka

            That is why we normally hire a towncar, or bid on them, at charity auctions - we love our wines, and do not want to drive afterward.

            However, for great food, and in many places, we just get a room near-by, and that takes care of it. We have done that in Hawai`i, in the UK and also locally. In almost every instance, it has been well worth it.


            1. re: piwakawaka

              I agree about the sober driver part: if I plan to have alcohol with dinner I plan to either walk or take public transportation. I live within walking distance of a lot of good places so it's not a problem: I've been known to take the train to San Francisco (about an hour each way outside of commute hours) for lunch or dinner on occasion. Exceptions are brew pubs (my goal is to visit every one in the US) when on a road trip: I'll go up to a half hour out of the way to get to one I'm not likely to visit again soon.

              1. re: tardigrade

                We do similar, when dining out - cab, or walk. We love our wines too much.

                Now, and only slightly off-topic, we had dined at a restaurant on Maui for lunch several times, as we always were staying across the Island. I found out that the restaurant also had an inn, which was sort of a B&B setup, with cottages near the restaurant. We were gifted a stay at the Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua, across the Island. The accommodations were out of this world, but we declined the last two free days, and paid for those last nights at that inn. I was staying 20' from the restaurant. We were finally able to do dinner, and I got to dive deeply into the wine list. All I had to do was stumble to our cottage. It was worth it.

                No driving included, but only a few steps on a footpath, but I do not regret turning down those two nights for free, across the Island.


            2. An hour for sure...but it will have to be something special. On the other hand, I have traveled thousands of miles to enjoy the foods of either a specific restaurant, a city, or a region.

              1. Half an hour to an hour travel time, one way, no problem. But I live in a large city, so if something isn't walking distance or a very short bus ride away, an hour is not that unusual a travel time.