I find that if you are a food lover, it's better to eat out alone. The reason is because I love to order the odd stuff like steak tar tar, foi gras, tongue meat, whole fish with the head attached, etc... If I take people with me to a restaurant and they see what I order, they often think it's abnormal because they are too Americanized and main stream and the dining experience is not pleasant. Also when I eat delicious foods, I want to savor the moment and not be distracted with conversation. If I am at a restaurant like McDonald's or something generic, having friends with me is fine because I don't care about the food and it's not important.