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Restaurant vs. Cafe: What Are the Differences?

What are the differences between Restaurant vs. Cafe? Both serve you coffee, and more or less both present food to your hungry stomach. So, next time you want to eat out some delicious food, which one you should you choose? A cafe? Or a
restaurant?

Well, the answer is not as simple as I described above. Cafes and Restaurants are entirely different, and there are various aspects that we can look at to have a clear idea about restaurants vs. cafes. Let’s find out!

Origin: Cafe vs. Restaurant

The word café from French roots is the base of the cafe, which they got from an
Italian term. This Italian café came from Arabic Qahwa and Turkish Kahve. All these
words mean coffee.

So, back in the late 1600s in France, cafes were all about serving coffee and other
cool drinks like beer, hot chocolate, and lemonade. They have many choices for tea,
coffee, and other drinks.

But “restaurant” means any place that sells food and drinks. So, back in 18th century
France, they called places that sold soup and other “restoratives” on their menu
restaurants. So, nowadays, restaurants can be all about different kinds of food, how
fast they serve it, how fancy it is, or just being super unique.

Restaurants Have More Variety Than Cafe

Due to their primary focus on beverages, many cafés do not provide extensive food
selections. The food and drink offered on a cafe’s menu are usually secondary to the
coffee.

That’s why you won’t find a full menu in most cafes, but instead, items like
sandwiches, salads, and other light fare. Cafes also typically sell pastries, cakes,
and other sweets.

However, you may get a wide variety of foods at restaurants. Even specialty
restaurants serving only one type of food typically offer more menu items than a
café. A restaurant’s menu may include starters, soups, salads, entrées, desserts,
and drinks.

Cafes Are More Casual than Restaurants

The amount of formality is another distinction between a cafe and a restaurant.
Cafes are typically more relaxed and informal than restaurants. Customers place
their orders at the counter, pay for them, and then pick up their meals and drinks
whenever they’re ready. The atmosphere and table settings in cafes are usually less
formal than in restaurants.

Table service is the norm in restaurants; diners are seated and attended to by
waiting staff. Restaurant table settings and decorations are generally more complex
than at cafes. Diners at some establishments may be asked to observe dress codes
or make advance appointments.

Cafes Are Cheaper than Restaurants

The cost is another aspect that sets a cafe apart from a restaurant. Due to the fewer
menu options and lower-quality foods offered by cafes, they are typically less
expensive than restaurants. Because they require fewer personnel, inventory, and
space than restaurants do, cafes also have reduced overhead expenses.

Restaurants typically charge more than cafés because they have a wider selection of
meals and utilize better ingredients. Due to the need for more personnel, resources,
and space than cafes, restaurants also have greater overhead costs.

Cafes Are More Social than Restaurants

One thing that sets cafes apart from restaurants is the vibe and social scene. Cafes
are way more chill than restaurants because they let you hang out and chat while
you sip your drink. Cafes usually hook you up with free Wi-Fi, newspapers,
magazines, or board games to chill with while you’re there. Oh yeah, cafes usually
have their gang of regulars who are tight with the staff.

Restaurants aren’t as social as cafes because they focus on getting your food to you
quickly and efficiently. Restaurants usually have crappy Wi-Fi or none, so they don’t
want you to hang around forever after you eat. Restaurants usually have many
different people coming in who don’t know each other or just the staff.

Cafes Are More Flexible than Restaurants

Cafes are way more chill than restaurants when catering to different customer
needs. At coffee and tea joints, you can usually customize your drink by throwin’ in
some syrups, flavors, or other toppings. Many cafes these days have vegan,
gluten-free, and organic options on their menu for people with special diets. Dude,
cafes are open 24/7, serving peeps from early to morning

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    Maria Ljungström

    Maria Ljungström is the founder and writer at Inredningsvis.se. She is an expert in interior design and has worked as a home stylist with a solid background in interior decorating. Maria likes to offer tips on how to make your home beautiful and luxurious affordably. With Inredningsvis, she has participated in several well-known media outlets such as Expressen, DN, and has written for GP Bostad.

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