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The Margin: This 27-year-old spends $1,000 a week at restaurants — and just $36 on groceries

And you thought you blew too much money dining out.

A Bon Appétit story about a 27-year-old tech professional who spends around $1,000 per week eating in restaurants has sparked quite the social-media frenzy. Commenters have criticized the restaurant budget as being overly excessive, but as one also noted, “Mixture of emotions here, but envy is certainly of them.”

In the story, the tech professional, who is based in Washington, D.C., but not identified by name, shares that her annual salary is $225,000 and that she has $400,000 in savings. In other words, she is someone who would generally be considered in a comfortable position for her age and can afford to dine out regularly.

And dine out regularly she does. “I love cooking, but I haven’t done it much recently. Packed work days don’t leave much time to eat, let alone cook,” she told Bon Appétit.

Her recent meals and food-and-drink items ranged from a $459.54 spread for two at a high-end Japanese restaurant (she paid for herself and her boyfriend) to a $13.33 to-go breakfast from a bakery, consisting of a pistachio croissant (“my usual”) and a matcha rhubarb sparkling lemonade (“my favorite summer drink”).

And the tech professional’s budget for groceries? A mere $36 a week.

On social media, many have had a field day critiquing the professional’s pricey lifestyle and dining habits. To say nothing of the fact she still lets her parents pick up her cellphone bill.

One commenter did, however, note all this spending might be just what some restaurants need to stay afloat:

While most Americans obviously don’t spend $1,000 per week on restaurants, they do still dine out regularly. A pre-pandemic survey found that those in the 25-34 age bracket spent $95 per week on dining and takeout. The same survey noted that dining has become about much more than food — that is, respondents cited socializing with friends and family as their top reason for eating in restaurants.

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