You order a well-done steak on a first date. Will the romance go up in flames?

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steak cooking over live coals
Photo: David Silverman/Getty Images (Getty Images)

If you’re on a promising first date with someone, you may want to avoid ordering steak if you want things to go well. In a survey of 2,000 participants, 53% of them said they wouldn’t date someone who preferred their steak cooked differently than theirs. Sure, that’s a mere 3% past a coin flip, but hey, sometimes you only get one chance!

People reported on the meat survey (best kind of survey), which was conducted by OnePoll on behalf of JBS USA, a meat processing company. The survey was nationwide, but it had some interesting regional findings. First, apparently 59% of Northeasterners judge potential romantic partners on their steak doneness—but they also judge everyone else, even platonic acquaintances. (I secretly judge people on their steak preferences, too.) Another thing: a majority of Midwesterners will reportedly eat whatever’s served to them, no matter how it’s; however, if given the chance, three out of four Midwesterners would prefer to take over grilling duties at barbecues and picnics.

A few other interesting tidbits from the survey: Northeasterners eat steak more frequently than individuals in other regions (about seven times a month compared to the national average, which is five times a month). My question: people eat steak that often? That seems like a lot of cow consumption. Northeasterners also eat around 16 ounces a month, compared to 13 ounces in the South, 11 ounces in the American West, and 10 ounces in The Takeout’s neck of the woods, the Midwest.


What’s really interesting is what people considered their favorite beef dishes. Three dishes tied for first place, at 32% each: bulgogi, stroganoff, and Philly cheesesteaks, which are all intriguing answers. I did not know that stroganoff was so popular on dining room tables, but one thing is certain: Americans are united by beef.