You wrote: “Completely disagree - either one is willing to explore another country (culture, food, nature etc) or shouldn’t go at all.”
An anecdote. A few years ago we were in Barcelona and I had scored a res at Tickets Bar, one the the Adria brothers places. It was one of the best and fun meals we’ve ever had. But as frommtron said above we were “just eating.” Dang good eating. Here’s part of what I wrote on CH at the time: "From what we could tell a lot of the diners were visitors or transplants from other nations. "
I recently saw an article that Kenny Shopsin had died. Now his place is IT
Kenny Shopsin died - there's no way it can be the same
At the opposite end of the spectrum was a lunch we had at Jean Georges. All about the food. FANTASTIC food but just food. The people all looked alike. We could have been anywhere.
There’s the guy in SE Asia and then there are the people who only eat at high-end places. I continue to try not to pity the latter ones, having finally dealt with the former.