The Key To Finding A Restaurant's Best Dish Is Eating Everything Family-Style

You've just heard about an amazing restaurant that you want to experience and you even get a few mouthwatering menu suggestions to take along with you. But once you start browsing through the menu, full of descriptions that all sound equally tempting, it can be easy for your eyes to glaze over with decision paralysis. Dining out at an unfamiliar spot can be a risk. But it can also lead to happy discoveries, once you finally find your favorite dish, although it might take a few return visits to find "the one." As your party explores the menu, there are bound to be several unique appetizers, entrees, and depending on who has room, desserts up for grabs you can sample at your leisure.

To expedite this whole process and minimize the regret that comes with wasting money on food that doesn't jive with your taste buds, eat with friends, and eat everything. "I'll have one of everything, please," sounds a little wild if you're ordering for one, but bring a hungry group that doesn't mind sharing, and you're sure to find your favorites in no time. This way, your group can order even the most unfamiliar items with less risk, and probably find a few hidden gems to savor on your next visit.

Instead of making safe choices like the California roll at a sushi restaurant or a simple chicken sandwich, try stepping out of your comfort zone and embracing the weird. We've got a few tips for the adventure-seeking foodies out there.

Order a few dishes the restaurant might not be known for

Bypassing the restaurant menu mind tricks that might persuade you to choose one dish over the other, your first step when choosing your family-sized spread of food should be to trust your gut. If something sounds good to you or features ingredients you love, go for it. Another straightforward approach is to ask your waiter for recommendations. However, instead of asking them what their personal favorites off the menu are, ask what dishes are popular or, better yet, what culinary creations the chef is renowned and praised for. 

You can also follow the rule of opposites when ordering if you're feeling particularly bold. If you're at a pizza joint, try the wings. Grab a juicy slab of grilled salmon at a steakhouse, or seek out a noodle-based dish at a seafood restaurant. Ask yourself what options don't sound appetizing at all or feature ingredients you've never tried before, and instead of doing a hard pass, give it a go. If there are seasonal delicacies listed that won't be around for long, or even meals you'd never even think to create at home, those could also be worth throwing into your table's buffet.

With so many flavorful options to try and extra mouths to feed, grazing on meals family-style can really take the pressure off a new restaurant experience. The more the merrier.