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Restaurant/Cafe/Coffee Shop Approach


beatlesfan77
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I did a search of this forum and couldn’t find anything on this. Has anyone here ever done a successful restaurant approach and got a date from it?  When I say restaurant approach I don’t mean hitting on the servers. I’m referring to you dining there and you see another diner you would like to meet. For example, I went for brunch this morning after doing an errand. I was sitting at the counter and there was a woman sitting at the counter as well but she was far away eating by herself. How would you suggest that I approach a situation like this?  Another example would be me sitting alone and I see a woman I’m interested in with a group of female friends. How would you approach that situation?

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What if you creep them out? Or what if they’re not single? 
 

I mean you have to weigh those two variables. 
 

I’m someone personally uncomfortable depending on how the guy approaches me. If he is agressive and too straight forward I get scared. That happened to me at the gym once. 
 

If the guy is more warm and gentle and friendly I will feel more like reciprocating. 
 

So it’s all about how you yourself will approach them. 

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First you have to smile, be friendly and say hi to people in general. That applies to everyday life going about your business. It helps to be a regular.

However trying to pick up women like that is a bad idea. It comes across as creepy.

Join some groups, clubs, sports, volunteer. Regularly mingle with people so you can have some small talk before lunging in asking for dates or numbers.

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Whenever I'm dining alone or at a coffee house alone, the very last thing I want is to be approached by a man. I go there for some relaxing peaceful alone time.

And be very careful approaching groups of women. I know when I was younger and out with my girlfriends and a man tried to approach us, some of my more "outspoken" friends would denigrate the poor guy, demanding to know why he thought we were there looking to pick up men. Most of the time we just wanted to have fun "girl time". 

I would not encourage this. I would focus more on meeting women at events or while participating in a group activity.

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2 minutes ago, boltnrun said:

Whenever I'm dining alone or at a coffee house alone, the very last thing I want is to be approached by a man. I go there for some relaxing peaceful alone time.

 

I totally agree with this. I am single and I don’t even want to be in a relationship anymore, so no, I don’t want men to approach me when I am having a coffee / lunch.

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Yes, people approach each other successfully in the wild like that on a regular basis. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that.

Most important is that you are able to strike up conversations easily with people and come across as a friendly, easy going kind of a person AND so long as you read whether your company is welcome or not quickly and accurately. 

So start with a friendly comment or question and gauge from there if she is interested in chit chat or looks annoyed. Also, be prepared that even if you do get into a fun conversation or banter, you might end up finding out that she is just friendly and otherwise has a bf.

My personal do's and don't's and what has worked in terms of getting me to engage in a conversation are:

Do comment on something relevant around you or some big local deal/event that is the hot current topic.

Do pay attention if she is happy to respond and carries the conversation forward or if you just get a curt response that shows she doesn't want to be bothered but is just being civil.

Do walk away if you get the vibe that she doesn't want to chat.

Don't immediately start hitting on her or trying to flirt cold. Do get a conversation going first if she is willing/interested.

Don't use pick up lines or weird/creepy questions like "so where is your husband at?"

If you are having some fun chat/banter then you can at some point say something like you really are enjoying her company and the chat and would she be interested in getting a coffee/drinks together some time? Be prepared for the "oh sorry, I'm in a relationship." 

 

 

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I would not unless she looks over at you and is approachable. Years ago when my son was an infant I was sitting in a grouping of couches with coffee and a gentleman nearby started chatting with me - it was obvious he was just being friendly and we had a nice conversation.  In that context -if the woman just has coffee and is not on her computer or phone - and it's a situation where it's a grouping of couches like that then I think it's ok but I'd err on the side of being quiet if her response is unenthusiastic.  

I would absolutely not approach a group of women.  They are together to chat.  To catch up or network.  It will look like you're trying to eavesdrop.

Edited by Batya33
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11 minutes ago, Batya33 said:

I would absolutely not approach a group of women.  They are together to chat.  To catch up or network. 

My friends and I actually had men pull up a chair and sit down at our table. Really ballsy. When we said something, they actually said something like "well, you're at a bar. You're obviously here to get laid." Unbelievable. Sadly, I have lots of stories like that.

OP, I'm sure you would never do something like that. But I mention it because experiences like this are what cause women to be borderline hostile toward men approaching them. It's very difficult to weed out the nice, respectful men from the entitled sexist a-holes. 

It's also why I caution against it. You might approach a woman in a completely polite manner, but maybe yesterday she encountered an entitled sexist a-hole. It's not you personally, it's just that she's tired of bad experiences. I know I was. You might wonder why you're met with such hostility. I'm trying to explain why that might happen, that's all.

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I can say it won't be easy from my experience. My first few encounters were disasters. By nature I am not that kind of person who talks much. Got my first and very best close friend in a similar encounter. I was nervous at first but somehow I managed and introduced myself. Oh boy when we started talking it was amazing and we have lot in comon. So by my advice go for it. 

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You should have saddled up to the counter yourself. Some eat there to socialize or at least be around people, rather than sit at a table alone. 

It's always a hit or miss tho no matter where. Some want to be left alone, some want to say hi. Gotta have a warm smile and a gift of the gab...just give it a go. 

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Kinda. But our restaurants(kafana) are more open type. Meaning that you seat to eat and drink but you usually come with friends and nothing stops you to socialize, go to other tables and maybe introduce yourself(better if you already know somebody on other table to do it for you), even dance if there is music and dancing involved. Most are younger so its kinda expected to approach if you want something. Even if they have somebody(if its a group of girls there is a high chance that they are either single or not serious about somebody or else boyfriend would be there somewhere usually) its not bad to just approach and talk because you dont know unless they tell you. So its kinda encouraged here because, well, its basically a bar with probably better menu that average bar and it serves exactly for socializing of that kind. So if you regularly mingle, its not unusual to ask for phone number and contact for something more. 

If you mean traditional restaurant, then no. That is usually for lunch here, think nobody is there to meet somebody, they just want to eat good. If you were both at the counter you could have tried to send her drink and see what she says. If she accepts it you could at least approach to talk a bit. At least here its a viable approach when you were at the counter and want something like that. Ask waiter to tell her that gentlman asks what she drinks, when she looks you smile and wave and tip the guy after for doing you a favor. Got to warn you that here they usually dont turn the drinks but that doesnt mean that they want something lol. But its a nice not-so-direct way to approach. 

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Good afternoon or evening everyone!  I appreciate all of your responses and perspectives.  It sounds like there is a 50/50 opinion on whether or not to go for it.  I can see your point to those who said that if a woman is alone she probably wants to have time to herself and not be bothered.  Then I also agree with try more meeting people in a group setting such as the clubs or volunteering.  I guess all in all it just depends on the situation and how everyone is feeling at the time.  

One time I did buy a woman at drink at the bar who looked like she was sad.  She waved hello to me and that was it.  Never talked to me or came over to my table.  Another friend of hers walked in and they left together.  That was the last time I did that.  

Another time at a different bar I saw a woman at the bar who I thought was attractive.  I actually left my seat at the bar and walked to her section and attempted to strike up a conversion with her and her friend.  Also bought them a round of drinks and sat with them.  We had a good conversation and I did get her number.  Tried following up and she ever responded.  So I just chalked it up to experience and moved on.  

Other posts of mine I mentioned that I did try Meetup groups.  Went to a couple of social ones that were at different restaurants, bars, and clubs.  With those a lot were pretty much in a clique already or if I did talk to others and had a great conversation, it never went past the event itself.  What really killed me was going to those events and some people spend most of the time with their face buried in their cell phone.  You want to ask those people how come they even bothered and just stayed home? 

In all of those encounters where I talked to people, I never tried stupid pickups or creepy lines and always attempted to come off as genuine.  I ask them questions about themselves and if they do not ask me questions back then I know they are not interested.  Very much like a game of tennis.  A great game will have the players hitting the ball back and forth.  Not just one person doing all the serving.  

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Its definitely possible, but I think it’s good to first read their level of attraction towards you and their openness to talking, before approaching.

It also depends on the vibe you give off, for example, I have this funny friend in Slovakia that would just go up to ANY group of girls and make some joke and be funny and was never a problem, actually he would say “oh do you mind if I join you? By the way this is my very good friend who is visiting from another country!” 🤦‍♂️ 

So having a funny friend that can break the ice helps! 

 

 

 

Edited by mical
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If I have my face buried in a book or my tablet or I'm intently watching the football game or Nascar race I am not open to someone busting in trying to start a convo or flirt. But if I am looking around the room, that means I'm open to talking to someone. Or I'm looking for my friend lol. 

It's vital to get some kind of read before approaching.

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10 hours ago, beatlesfan77 said:

Another time at a different bar I saw a woman at the bar who I thought was attractive.   I did get her number.  

Don't pick up women in bars. Use the clubs, groups and volunteering approach.

If they see you as a person, a friendly guy,etc., it's a lot better than every other guy in a bar who does this.

Especially asking for numbers. Who knows, they'll probably give you the number of the local pizza place because this type of pickup tactic is so overused.

 

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10 hours ago, beatlesfan77 said:

Good afternoon or evening everyone!  I appreciate all of your responses and perspectives.  It sounds like there is a 50/50 opinion on whether or not to go for it.  I can see your point to those who said that if a woman is alone she probably wants to have time to herself and not be bothered.  Then I also agree with try more meeting people in a group setting such as the clubs or volunteering.  I guess all in all it just depends on the situation and how everyone is feeling at the time.  

One time I did buy a woman at drink at the bar who looked like she was sad.  She waved hello to me and that was it.  Never talked to me or came over to my table.  Another friend of hers walked in and they left together.  That was the last time I did that.  

Another time at a different bar I saw a woman at the bar who I thought was attractive.  I actually left my seat at the bar and walked to her section and attempted to strike up a conversion with her and her friend.  Also bought them a round of drinks and sat with them.  We had a good conversation and I did get her number.  Tried following up and she ever responded.  So I just chalked it up to experience and moved on.  

Other posts of mine I mentioned that I did try Meetup groups.  Went to a couple of social ones that were at different restaurants, bars, and clubs.  With those a lot were pretty much in a clique already or if I did talk to others and had a great conversation, it never went past the event itself.  What really killed me was going to those events and some people spend most of the time with their face buried in their cell phone.  You want to ask those people how come they even bothered and just stayed home? 

In all of those encounters where I talked to people, I never tried stupid pickups or creepy lines and always attempted to come off as genuine.  I ask them questions about themselves and if they do not ask me questions back then I know they are not interested.  Very much like a game of tennis.  A great game will have the players hitting the ball back and forth.  Not just one person doing all the serving.  

People use their phone as a safety net or distraction. That sounds like a lousy meet up. I’ve only been to ones where people made an effort and had a wonderful time. I’m not sure if it depends on your city or the average age of the group. I stay away from the meat market type ones where individuals are so obviously on the prowl or just looking to get drunk. 

Different individuals will feel differently to being approached because we all have differing comfort levels and past experiences. If I had a terrible experience it’ll likely influence how I interpret someone approaching me in the future. I have the mindset that these are all public spaces and others have a right to mingle and engage with one another (even strangers) provided it’s respectful so no, I don’t think it’s inappropriate at all. 

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On 1/28/2022 at 12:26 AM, beatlesfan77 said:

How would you suggest that I approach a situation like this?  Another example would be me sitting alone and I see a woman I’m interested in with a group of female friends. How would you approach that situation?

If it's not coming naturally, don't force it.

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I don’t use my phone as a safety net or distraction as a rule and very often I’m conducting business.  If I’m sitting at a restaurant it’s a private business. Im a paying customer. Im entitled to my space where I chose to sit. Just like if someone on a plane decides to put their stuff or body parts in my space - that’s not ok without my permission.  I’ve certainly mingled at cafes. And definitely when sitting on a park bench or at the playground with my child. But if I’m eating breakfast at Starbucks on the way to an appointment and getting some time to relax and eat and check email no I don’t want to be disturbed and I think I have a right to not be disturbed. I’m paying in part to have a space to sit and consume what I paid for.  
It’s ok to approach but be very selective and feel out the situation.  I have a friend I met who I struck up a conversation with as we sat on a park bench and our children played.  Because it’s expected at playgrounds to socialize and chat.  
But when a person trying to get me to convert or buy something or photograph my child approached me I firmly told them to go away and it was inappropriate to be approached.  No exact science unfortunately. 

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