“Will You Be Dining Alone?”

Many of us feel it’s still a taboo to dine out alone in the UK, but in this age of computerised gadgets, when people only ever half listen to a conversation often while looking at a screen, could this still be true?

dining-aloneMost people do usually have friends they could ask, although this is probably where the taboo started, the awkward fear someone appears lonely. However nowadays this could often not be further from the truth. Many people would love to escape to a communication free zone, for just a couple of hours, where nobody expects anything of you, and you can simply enjoy a meal and the ambiance of your surroundings. If it works for train carriages then why not restaurants?!

With this in mind, a new solo eatery in Amsterdam recently opened up specifically for this purpose; no Wi-Fi connection and with only single tables and chairs for solitary dining. Eenmaal is a temporary restaurant in Amsterdam that claims to be the world’s first restaurant catering purely to solo diners. No couples, no families, no groups of chattering friends allowed. It may be the first of many new restaurants of this nature, and a revolution in the dining experience.

There are many that think it’s a trend following on from ‘no reservation dining’ establishments that has led to this spur in dining alone, and while this could be partly true, it’s also a reflection on the contemporary make-up of our lives, and it is after all the demands of our lifestyles which make these changes happen.

Our busy lives never allow us just to stop for a minute, and take stock for ourselves, to tune out and tune in to just the here and now can be so refreshing.

Restaurateur Russell Norman speaking to the Independent in April stated “I think more and more places are welcoming solo diners because they make up a very significant percentage of the restaurant-going public,” says the restaurateur behind London’s Polpo . . . “The stigma that used to be attached to dining alone has now gone and we are comfortable in our own company or with a newspaper or a novel.. We positively encourage people to come in solo.” 

While a recent review on trip adviser for the Retro Bistrot says it all really.

‘I attended on my own for a jazz dinner and was warmly welcomed by both the staff and band coordinator. Without writing lots of superlatives I simply had an amazing evening of sublime music, beautiful cuisine and caring service. I will without doubt return and recommend you try the cuisine at the very least if not a jazz dinner. . .Simply sublime’ 5 of 5 stars.

Trip adviser has recommendations for dining alone in London so why not give it a go.

And of course we will welcome you with open arms at Retro Bistrot at any time of the day or evening. Our popular jazz evenings are on the final Tuesday of every month if you like music and a sense of communal entertainment.

Drop in, phone or book ahead via our reservations page: http://www.retrobistrot.co.uk/reservations/

We look forward to seeing you soon.

The Retro Team

PS:  Naturally we don’t discriminate against anyone wanting to bring a friend or five…!!