Why Should we Have To Know The Difference Between Cafe

When it comes to having food outside, usually two places come to our mind that is either a Cafe or a restaurant. The purpose of both the places is to serve quality food and ambiance however it totally depends on the mood of the customer for what they are craving. Usually, people do not pay attention or are unaware of the fact that restaurants and Cafes are two different places. The target audiences for both entities are different. So without delay, let’s dig into some major differences between a Cafe and a restaurant.

What is a Cafe?

A Cafe is a small dine-in place that sells light meals and drinks. Usually, Cafes are also called Cafeterias, snack bars, and buffets. In the Cafe, the menu revolves around coffee, tea, drinks, and mocktails, in addition to some light snacks like cold sandwiches, baked muffins, pizza, and other snacks. There are no formal dining tables, cutleries, or waiters in the Cafe. The environment is quite cozy and funky sometimes.

What Is a Restaurant?

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A restaurant is a bigger setup to cater to a large audience at the same time. Restaurants are also called fine dining places where the chef cooks food on the premises offering numerous courses such as appetizers, soups, salad, desserts, and main courses. There are formal dining tables for small and large families. Waiters are there to serve everything from water to tissue papers. The environment is quite formal with a light Terence 

9 Important differences between Cafes and Restaurant

1. Cafes have a smaller menu as compared to Restaurant

Usually, people visit a Cafe to have something light along with coffee or something to drink. Cafes have a smaller menu that serves sandwiches, baked items, pastries, pizza, and other light items. Different types of coffees, teas, and mocktails are served in Cafes.

Restaurants, on the other hand, have a proper menu that starts from appetizers, sliders, salads, soups, main course, desserts, mocktails, and hot beverages. Even if the restaurant offers a certain type of cuisine has a lot to offer in terms of starters and main course.

2. There is a huge difference in the ambiance

The ambiance at both the food eateries has a huge difference. Cafes generally have a relaxed environment where pop music and remix songs are played in the background. People come here to relax during their lunch breaks from the offices and to catch some easy and quick bites with coffee. University students love to hang out with their gang at the Cafes to have some relaxing time after the classes.

Restaurants have formal environments with proper arrangements. Most people come here for formal dinners, parties, and get-togethers. They come here to sit down for a few hours and enjoy their meal. A variety of food is ordered depending upon the guests who have come along and spent time with their loved ones

2. Cafes are a smaller setup as compared to restaurant

Most Cafes are located in the malls, central business districts, and at localities where people from the offices and universities can reach easily them. The setup of Cafes is not so big which usually caters to are few dozens of people at a time. A 90 or 120 sq. yard, single floored setup is seen in the case of Cafes.

Restaurants need bigger spaces as they cater to 50-100 people or more at a time depending upon the space. There could be multiple stories if the square yards are less in terms of a restaurant setup. Also, proper space for the kitchen at the restaurant is required by the chefs to prepare meals. The storage room for all the ingredients and freezers for the meat also takes a lot of space.

3. Restaurants are more expensive 

Restaurants are considered to be an expensive place to dine in. just because it offers large space and many types of food. Also, the rent, electricity, ingredients, and pay of the chefs and waiters make the cost add up to the menu. 

On the other hand, Cafes are typically smaller setups with limited things to offer. People mostly stop by a Cafe to get some quick snacks and coffee, so that makes the bill less compared to a restaurant. 

4. Furniture and sitting arrangements vary at both the places

In Cafes, the furniture is not that formal. We see comfortable sofas, center tables, coffee tables, paintings, and funky chandlers. The arrangement of the furniture is mostly random. Also, the furniture does not match each other.

Restaurants pay a lot of attention to the dining tables, cutlery, paintings, and sequencing of the furniture. The theme of all the furniture is the same. Mostly all the tables are of the same type, color, and comfort. 

 5. Restaurants serve you whereas you serve yourself in Cafes

When we step into a restaurant, we are expected to be received by a waiter who shows us the table. After the order is placed the food is served hot and fresh right from the kitchen to the table. The dirty dishes are also taken by the waiter followed by a bill presented on the table. At restaurants tipping the waiter who served you is considered mandatory. It is also a token of appreciation and a kind gesture

The experience at the Cafe is very different, generally, we place an order at the cash counter and pick it up then and there. We find the table on our own and pay the bill at the cash counter. At the Cafes, they offer a recycle bin to throw away the trash on our own. Usually, people do not tip the working staff present in the Cafe because it’s all self-service kind of a place.

 . 6 Formal menu cards vs menu on the screen

At the restaurants, the waiter hand you over a formal menu card which has all details of the every dish offered. Along with the description of the dishes the prices are mentioned.

In Cafes, the menu is mostly seen on the walls or the screens near the cash counter so that the customer selects it then and there and pays it right away.

7A Cafe offers a working space

Most Cafes allow customers to sit and work as long as they want. Many freelancers and university students gather at the Cafes to work or study. 

Meanwhile, restaurants are meant to have family dinners, gatherings, celebrations, and office meetups.

8. Cafes have an outdoor setups

Cafes have outdoor roadside sitting arrangements for customers who want to enjoy the weather.

Restaurants have a closed air-conditioned set up in order to make the ambiance quiet and formal.

9. Most Cafes allow smoking within the premises

Due to the relaxed ambiance of the Cafes, smoking is allowed there. Usually, people smoke when they have coffee and a light snack. To provide utmost satisfaction, some tables are reserved for smokers so that nonsmoker does not get uncomfortable. 

Restaurants have a separate smoking area and people are not allowed to smoke in the dining hall.


We assume that the difference between a Cafe and a restaurant is pretty clear for you to decide on your next dining out place.


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