Tuesday, May 24, 2011

How to eat out during a business dinner and not blow your diet

We all know that desks jobs are killing us. And making us fat. So what is one to do when you have a business lunch or dinner scheduled . . . at a steakhouse?  In the legal/finance field, we have what are called "closing dinners".  A big deal closes, the lawyers and bankers get all of their fees, and the lawyers take the bankers out to a big, long dinner to celebrate.  We have one tonight at Del Friscos in Charlotte.

Work dinners can be delicate.  You don't want to be the loser that orders a salad, dressing on the side and that's it.  You'll look silly to both your co-workers and clients and that type of order will inevitably cause you to be the center of attention/conversation for at least a moment.  And you don't want that, especially if you're on the bottom of the proverbial totem pole. But you don't want one night out for WORK (i.e. not with your man) to contribute to weight gain.  I mean, a romantic dinner out with your husband or your girlfriends is one thing.  Work is another.

So, we've got to go in with a battle plan, folks:

(1) Step 1: Look at the restaurant's online menu and analyze your choices.  I'm going to have to order a cocktail, an appetizer, an entree, a side (it's one of those steakhouses that serve sides family style, a la Capital Grille) and possibly a dessert if everyone is ordering one.  Those are none negotiable.  So, we have to evaluate our choices and make the healthiest decisions.  My plan:

App: Oysters on the half shell
Entree: 8oz filet mignon
Side: Asparagus (probably has butter but it's the least harmful of all of the side choices)
Drink:  Club soda/sparkling water and MAYBE a glass of wine.

Dessert: Wild card (not sure if anyone will order and the dessert menu is not online)

(2) Step 2:  Avoid the bread plate.  This will be tough.  I crave the carbs.

(3) Step 3: Execute battle plan.  Don't get swayed by what other people are ordering.  For me, this will also be tough.  I'm one of those "Oooo, that sounds delicious, I'll have that instead" people.  I can also be swayed by specialty cocktails that taste like they don't have alcohol but really do.

I've laid out the plan.  Let's see how it goes.

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