"Doggie Bags"

Joined May 26, 2001
When you can't finish what you've ordered at a restaurant, what is it that you bring home? What do you do with it after you get it home?
Joined Jul 31, 2000
I bring home an empty wallet and a receipt, the receipt goes in the trash and my wallet goes to bed.

:D ;)
Joined Aug 29, 2000
I bring home only what I would regret to leave behind. This would mean a very good piece of beef or a particularly tasty dish (the most recent was lamb served with avgolemono sauce and artichokes).
Joined Aug 11, 2000
I took home a 1/2 slab of ribs last weekend for a teenage son that was not with me. Fine dining generally does not translate into a doggy bag for me.....it's usually the bistro or median priced restaurants that have super large portions. Sometimes when I'm eating from a prix fixe menu and get to dessert and have no room, I'll take home something that travels well.
Joined Mar 3, 2002
Whatever meat, fish, chicken is left on my plate goes home to my aged, toothless cat. I get to chew it up for her. <g>


Staff member
Joined Oct 7, 2001
My wife takes just about anything leftover home. The sad part is that I usually throw it away after gone from good food to a science experiment.
Joined Mar 2, 2002
Pork Tenderloin I take home. Its good cold- straight from the fridge in the middle of the night (obviously the time of day when I am at my most sophisticated) :rolleyes:

My grandmother embarrasses me. She packs up everything. Food off her plate, food off our plates, rolls, pats of butter, everything. My dad says it because she grew up during the depression. I think its possible that she might just be weird.

Joined Mar 3, 2002
Rita, if your grandmother's urge to take home everything comes from a sense of the preciousness of food, the wastefulness of others may embarrass her.
Joined Jul 24, 2001
I have a really bad experience from doggy bags. You will laugh but here the mentality is different.

I used to have a friend who had a brother who liked to show off about everything... The fact that he is a physician is not irrelavant , I think, but let's not be racists...

So, in order to show off, he had one of those huge dogs Molossus,you know, the ones that are as big as horses...

I have the bad habbit to clean my dish. So everytime we went out with him , he started " Hey hey don't forget, I have a dog that cost me a fortune, leave something for my dog"

After one hour he continued" Hey ! You don't have to eat it all!!! Don't push yourself , leave something for my dog"

To make a long story short: I hate the culture of doggy bags. I just hate it!! I have seen people ridiculing themselves for a doggy bag!
Joined Nov 29, 2001
I'll take home what translates into lunch the next day, or a comprable quantity. If I've spent good money on a restaurant meal, I reserve the right to take the balance of it home with me.

In NY and other large cities, people take doggy bags and give them to the homeless. Once at a light, I jumped out of my car (I was a passenger, not the driver ;)) and handed a doggy bag to a homeless person. He seemed extremely grateful and I felt good about it.
Joined Jun 1, 2001
The only thing I normally take home is pizza. Everything else always seems quite different after it's been shoved in a styrofoam clamshell -- mushy, unappetising. Yuck.

Normally, I order an appetiser and salad instead of an entree, or share an entree with my husband, so that there isn't anything left over. Most appetisers, especially in places with pretensions, are like meals in themselves anyway. I hate when I'm given a huge, pig-sized trough of food; I don't feel as though I'm "getting my money's worth," I feel like quantity is more important than quality.

(On an unrelated note: I also loathe those enormous charger-sized plates so many places seem to be into. Yes, it allows the kitchen staff to build Architectural Marvels out of my food -- but then why the **** don't they have bigger tables? Me on one side, A. on the other, two of those wheel-size plates, and we have to start moving the salt and pepper shakers and our drinks onto the window ledge to make room. What IS that about?)


Joined Apr 4, 2000
Some restaurants serve such huge portion you could never eat it all. I'll ask for a doggie bag often. The food is good, you paid for it, why not enjoy it the next day. It will just remind you of the good time you had the night before.
Joined Jan 11, 2002
I have always wondered how was born the use of doggy bags-whether it comes from your practical anglo-saxon mentality, or from the fact you have "your eyes bigger than your stomachs" and need to be served with king-size meals that you can't destroy all at once;)
In Italy, the custom of doggy bags is unknown and if you asked for taking away your leftovers you would be considered totally insane...maybe you could get them, but for the same reason why it's always better to go along with someone who is mentally ill:D
In any case, it seems to me a very good idea if you're supposed to give that food to a poor guy and maybe also to your dog...but I'm not so stimulated by the idea of reheating the day after something old and cold (mainly if it comes from an ordinary place)
Do you think it's because of my old-fashioned mediterranean mentality?

Joined May 26, 2001
Pongi -- you're right about the "practical anglo-saxon mentality" as in "Waste not, want not," even among those of us who are not exactly anglo-saxon. ;) There are a lot of people who think that big portions equal GOOD*. But as you can see from CompassRose, not everyone likes that (I agree with her). It's difficult, because if a restaurant thinks its customers want huge portions, they'll serve them -- even though it could be easier and cheaper to serve manageable sizes. American abundance = a lot of waste!

I sometimes eat all the vegetables and accompaniments on my plate and bring home almost the entire piece of meat (usually chicken or steak). Then at home I'll turn that slab of protein into a completely different meal for 2 people! And sometimes still have leftovers from that!

* There's an old joke about 2 old ladies at a resort hotel, complaining to each other:
First o.l.: The food here is terrible.
Second o.l.: Yes, and the portions are so small!
Joined May 1, 2001
I avoid eating at such places. I don't eat at restaurants in order to acquire tomorrow's lunch. I'd rather have a smaller portion (and pay less as well). There's more to value than simple quantity.
Joined Apr 19, 2001
I seem to remember reading somewhere (of course I can't find it!) that 'doggie bags' originally came into use in the big steak and chop houses in NYC, where they served huge chops and on the bone steaks, and people would ask for a bag, to literally take the bone home to the dog. Can't verify this, though. Sorry for the senior moment!
Joined Aug 14, 2000
It has been a very, very long time since a restaurant meal stood a chance of making it beyond it's first appearance alive :)
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