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How do you like to dine...booth or table?

I'm a booth chick..

Had friends refuse the booth and only want to sit at a table...even if it is in the middle of the room, vs the booth, against the wall, seeing all but still secretive to some degree and who doesn't just love the feel of naugahyde!

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    1. re: ipsedixit

      Ha...are you thinking of the post with the hoggy, one cup of Joe screenwriters, alone, taking up precious booth space?

      1. re: Beach Chick

        :-)

        I, too, am partial to booths.

        Although I do hate to be the "bitch" and get stuck in the middle and nature calls ...

        1. re: ipsedixit

          I love to sit in the middle! Rarely do I get up during the meal.

    2. depends how many of us are there? do I need the ability to make a clean break and sneak away for a few minutes (say for a smoke) and not be shoved in next to someone worse than an airplane seat (I have claustrophobia bad) or is it just the 2 of us? clingy relatives with abandonment issues or pals?

      3 Replies
      1. re: hill food

        To me, there is nothing worse than a small booth.
        I want a booth that seats 6 comfortably without anyone touching..
        It is a drag when you have to excuse yourself and your in the middle...especially, if your wearing shorts and your skin sticks and makes for not a pretty scene.

        1. re: Beach Chick

          I have been in places where the booths are in the middle so each side has 2 exits, and I have seen cool circular high-backed ones seating 6-8 with 3-4 openings, sort of like your own little private dining room.

          but I think I prefer a wall lined with a long banquette fronted with small tables and chairs, it's sort of the best of both worlds. easily adapted to various #'s (2-4-6 etc.) if you want a chair you get a chair, if you want the defensible sensibility of your back against the wall, you can get that too.

          1. re: hill food

            My poor father needs his back to the wall and to sit in a chair so the banquette are a nightmare for our family.

      2. Tables for me....booths are too small....and i really dislike the moron sitting behind me pressing or banging on the banquette seat.

        1. my waistline has exceeded the capacity of many, but not all booths. other than that I don't have a strong prefernce most of the time. I like the freedom to move my chair a bit and wiggle around a bit that a table provides, but the booth gives a nice sense of privacy.

          there used to be a restaurant here with those large wicker 'peacock' chairs. sort of the best of both worlds, so long as the waiter was attentive.

          1. Booth. Tables are bulls-eyes for elbows, handbags, hips, trays, etc. attached to passersby making contact with my head, back, shoulders, arms, etc. I don't know about you, but I prefer to not be under attack while I am eating.

            1. Booth please. I lack adequate personal padding for most chairs at tables.

              1. Table. I prefer to sit closer to the table than most booths allow (even though I'm tall) and also prefer the better support of most chairs.

                1 Reply
                1. re: CanadaGirl

                  ^^^ this. I always feel like my food is too far from me and the table is too high when I sit at a booth .

                2. It the booth is roomy enough for four then I like a booth. But I usually find they are too cramped, so with more than three I go for a table. I just like the room!

                  1. Booth if I fit in it. Some are narrow on one side and wide on the other. Tables are nice if the chairs are comfy and you are next to a wall or in a corner.

                    1. My favorite diner has "half booths", one person on each side of the table. I like that arrangement alot--especially if I'm dining alone.

                      My favorite upscale restaurant has counter seating at the open kitchen. Lots of conversation with the chef and his staff; and other diners, all-in-a-line. Most convivial.

                      1. Always a table. I'm a fat man and booths are just so damned uncomfortable for those of us who are "of substance"

                        1. Table definitely. The one in my kitchen.

                          1. In a group, btwn handbags, coats, shopping bags and the occasional laptop a booth shared by more than two people is too crowded for my tastes. But if it's the only option offered and we don't have time to wait for a table, booth it is and we joke about how cramped we are before large plates of food even arrive.

                            If I'm eating alone, I prefer a booth because I can eat, work and sprawl w/out bugging anyone else.

                            Depends on the place and the dining companions.

                            1. While I prefer a booth for the cozy and slightly separated feeling, they aren't all created equally. It's nice to be able to adjust your chair so you are comfortable at the table. But, my elderly aunt is often my dining companion, and booth seating is often so low that her little self practically has her chin at table level. But she still wants the booth!

                              1. Alone or with family/friends, a cozy booth. Business meal or acquaintances, a table where I can look into everyone's face and get up at will.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: tcamp

                                  It's the same for me. I like the coziness of a booth when I'm with people I enjoy being cozy with. Otherwise, a table is more comfortable for me.

                                2. Table is my first choice. I like a straight backed chair for back comfort. Too many booth seat cushions are worn and/or have sprung springs and no support.
                                  Furthermore, if we are 4 people, I do not enjoy the server passing food over me and clearing dirty dishes across my space if I am seated at the aisle.
                                  and. there'll be no little b*stard either kicking the wood beneath the seat or standing up on the bench, turniong around and staring into our space. If I wanted to dine with little kids, I'd bring them, I don't want to share someone elses.

                                  1. Booth. I wish more restaurants had them.

                                    It avoids traffic and gives a little more sense of privacy.

                                    If someone brings a child to sit in the adjacent booth and the little moster repeatedly kicks the seat or stands up and peers over the top, I have no qualms about getting up and asking the adults to control their offspring. If they still don't stop, I've been known to move to another booth.

                                    1. I prefer a table. I'm short and I can reach my food plus have back support at a table!

                                      Once I was at a very nice restaurant which actually offered a pillow to make booth seating easier. Perhaps I'll bring my own in a few years when I age to a greater degree of crotchetiness!

                                      1. Back pain dictates where I sit. Always. We must sit where I am able to easily get up to walk around frequently. I also must use a lumbar support so must choose chairs/booths with sturdy/comfortable backs. There are places where I cannot eat as a result. For example, there are fantastic places in Croatia where there is bench seating. Can't do that. :(

                                        1. It completely depends on how comfortable the booth or table is at the particular restaurant. I have some that I refuse to sit at their tables because the chair is completely uncomfortable and others where the booth is such that it kills my back because of the weird angle.

                                          1. Loving all your responses.
                                            I've had my share of lil' brats kicking the booth..weird booth angles..too close..too far away..too short on the seat..woobly too..overall, I'll still opt for one over the table..
                                            Banquettes are great..
                                            There is a great French bistro in SD but their chairs are so horrid that I refuse to go there anymore.
                                            For me, I want a seat that is as comfortable as the food is good.

                                            1. Depends. When I'm alone (usually in truck stops) I usually sit at the counter in order to engage in conversation with my fellow drivers. When I'm out with my wife I prefer a booth.

                                              1. Uncle Bob will not eat at anybody's booth!! ~~ If ya don't have a table...I'll wait.....or leave.

                                                1. Hubby & I are definitely booth people. Simply more comfortable, more room, & a safer spot to park purses/jackets, etc.

                                                  In addition, I have serious back & knee problems, & booths are definitely easier on me than hard-back chairs.

                                                  1. Chair, unless all the booths in the row are empty, and you can never count on that, so chair.

                                                    I especially hate booths that have children standing in them. Do adults stand up and get schmutz from their shoes on the seats? Why do they -- and the people working in the restaurant -- let kids do it?

                                                    1. I'm claustrophobic and will only sit in a booth if I can be on the outside.

                                                      1. My husband and I prefer the bar over either table or booth if there are just the two of us. Otherwise a booth is better because we can sit next to each other.

                                                        1. Table! I'm much too damn fat for most booths, my purse is too big to sit on the seat with us and gets lost in the (scary) abyss under the table, and I grow weary of leaning over for the salt and dipping my bosom in a plate of biscuits and gravy....although many of my dining companions seem to find it fairly amusing when I do so.

                                                            1. Much depends on the nature of the booth and the sort of tables available. There's a restaurant we go to a lot that has chairs only at one long table, and if we're a mob we'll get that. But the rest of the seating is all booths. They're comfortable enough, but if I'm sitting opposite another potbellied guy we'll both suffer, and for some reason the tables are well above tummy-button height, which makes me feel like I'm eight again. This comes in rather handy when I'm sipping one of their lovely margaritas, as I can have the straw in my mouth and still be looking my companions in the eye, but there's no way to eat without putting one's elbows on the table. So I would say that in most cases I prefer a chair and table of comfortable height, and the ability to get up if necessary without bothering anyone. If it's just me or the two of us, though, a nice oldfashioned booth has its charms.

                                                              1. Table. Do I really need a reason?

                                                                1. Table for me, please. Much more intimate, conducive to good eating habits and comfortable. I like being able to move my chair around a bit and the all around formality of a table. To me, eating in a booth is like eating at a table in font of a couch.

                                                                    1. Well - I'm looking for a recommendation.... My date and I always have to squeeeeeze into our seats!! I know we need to lose weight, but where, oh where, can people go to eat that actually has "roomy" seats???? No one has said anything about that in this thread. Pls help!

                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                      1. re: bluehaze516

                                                                        Harters mention size and the need for a chair not booth way back in Dec 2012. BUT, as he is in England, I don't know that his recommendations will meet your needs.

                                                                        Always look at restaurant websites and see if the chairs in the pictures have arms. No arms, then there is a chance you will be more comfortable than being restricted by arms.

                                                                        Don't be afraid to call ahead and ask about the chairs. Tell them there is a member in your party with mobility issues and you need to know about chair width, arms, etc. As soon, as you play the mobility card, they get very accommodating. It's not a lie, you don't have to be handicapped to have mobility issues.

                                                                        1. re: bluehaze516

                                                                          bluehaze, when I'm going somewhere new I almost always scour the internet for photos, just to know what I'm getting into. I know, I know, I should lose weight...but if I am spending twenty bucks for my pasta, I think they can provide me with something better than a spindly plastic chair.

                                                                        2. I'm all legs at 6' 8 " . Where ever I fit . I struggle with that little table for two.

                                                                          1. Table, generally. Bar if solo or with one other person at many places.

                                                                            1. It depends on the kind of place we're visiting, but I take after my Mom and am mostly a booth person.

                                                                              1. I was once at an ethnic restaurant, at a table, when a commotion erupted at a nearby booth. Turns out a cockroach had emerged from between the seat and the back. I'd never thought about the increased likelihood of vermin making their homes in booths vs. free-standing chairs and tables. I just read something about people getting bedbug bites in movie theaters. If they can get into theaters on people's clothing and bags, they can get into eateries, too. Again, booth seats being more likely to harbor them than chairs. Booths touch walls, which are also home to pests, more often than tables do.

                                                                                I have mobility problems. I can't readily slide across a bench seat or stand up on one leg while the other is still trapped under the booth table.

                                                                                1. Definitely a table with decent chairs. I don't like most booths.

                                                                                  We were at a Texas Roadhouse last year with the extended family. They had large booths and somehow I got in first. They added a table and two chairs at the end of the booth. There were five people between me and the end, plus we were crowded. I'm not normally claustrophobic, but I started to get a little panicky and had to get out.