Sometimes there's a special occasion that needs to be celebrated or you just have no desire to cook. When this happens, it's time to go to a restaurant, a place where you can purchase prepared food for dining in, take out, or delivery. Every eatery has a focus that their menu revolves around, whether it be ethnic, family, or bar in nature.
The first official restaurants were Chinese, established during the Song Dynasty. It's thought that these places grew along side theatrical stage drama. As time has progressed, dining establishments have matured in several different ways. Fast food cafes and buffet joints have risen to cater to the working stiff with very little time. These places can also include coffee bars. Average bar and grill places also aim to serve food fast, but their menus are often limited to finger foods. Family establishments usually aim to serve comfort food of various types, like southern, Mexican, Greek, or Italian cooking. Sometimes these restaurants offer specialty dining like vegetarian, sushi, fondue, or seafood to eat. Fine dining cafes elicit thoughts of exotic cuisine like French, Thai, or Indian. Some of these places require semi-formal or formal wear in order to be seated.
Depending on the area's laws, some restaurants may not be allowed to serve alcohol without a meal involved or they may not be able to serve at all. Bars have severe alcohol restrictions that allow them to serve the way they do. Fully licensed cafes can serve all they want or allow people to bring their own beverages (BYOB).