Is Solo Dining For You?

The Lempert Report
February 22, 2023

There is a food writer and cookbook author by the name of Angelo Comsti, that has issued his 2023 trends. One of his trends has nothing to do with the foods that he's talking about. It's about solo dining. He says that eating alone is no longer a taboo as more people are finding joy in solo dining. So I guess, you know, you don't want to deal with other people, just leave me alone. Gimme food! He also said it's become totally fashionable thanks to the pandemic, and you can check out thousands of TikTok videos with the hashtags #solodate and #diningalone. What do you think? Is this gonna be a trend? Are we gonna see these hashtags, you know, grow and do something interesting? 

Sally: Yeah, I think this is really interesting. And Angelo Comsti talks about how this trend could be attributed to the popularity of a South Korean trend, called Hanbok, which comes from two words meaning alone and bap meaning food. And so this became a popular trending concept and hashtag in South Korea. And maybe that's where it started. He also talks about the pandemic that you mentioned, and now people being more willing to eat alone. On TikTok there are 9.6 million hashtags of #diningalone and 201.5 million of #solodate. So clearly it is catching on in some way. And I'd love to see how restaurants respond in creating this dining experience for them. Like is there a smaller, more intimate table or are we looking back at that trend that we saw a few years ago, you know, before the pandemic where we saw big community tables where the people that were eating alone could come and join other people at a table. I'll be curious to see how that plays out. 

Phil: Yeah, I agree with you. Because based on what he's saying, it's that, you know, I want that small table by myself away from people so I don't have to relate. And then when we look at the community table, that whole premise is, you know, I don't know anybody. I don't have friends. I don't have a date. So if I sit at this community table, maybe I'll meet somebody that is worthwhile talking to. So I agree with you. It'll be interesting to watch to see if it actually happens. You know, just by observation, I have noticed more people eating alone than probably have in a long time. And again, I would point to the pandemic as a result of that. But we'll see. Or are we just getting more antisocial and we don't wanna deal with people? 

Sally: I think it's all moms. Phil. I think moms want to eat alone. Just a theory.