Date Night Dining: How to Pick a Winner

April Peveteaux
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Flickr: Photo by Scaredy Kat

Has this ever happened to you? You shell out $50 for a babysitter, upwards of $80 (or more!) for dinner and drinks (not to mention the precious hour of your time dodging grabby toddlers while getting ready) just to have a massive disappointment appear on the white tablecloth in front of you. That's not going to put you in the mood for some lovin' when you arrive home, poor and hungry.

 

 If you're in the same two-kids-at-home-boat as I am, getting out of the house and into a great restaurant happens rarely. You don't want to waste time on a meal that includes, "overly salty pasta" and "sub par prosecco." So next time you head out the door for a lovely dining experience, check these restaurant review sites first:

Citysearch: The gold standard in online recommendations.

Pros: Citysearch has listings for every state and many, many cities all over the US.

Cons: Citysearch has been around for so long, sometimes the pile up of reviews are completely contradictory.

Chowhound: Dedicated only to the culinary, this site is serious about good food.

Pros: If you're an urban eater, Chowhound is dedicated to the foodie in you. You'll only find recommended joints on this site.

Cons: Small town gals need to apply (your search field). Its range is smaller than Citysearch, leaving a good portion of the population in the dark.

Yelp: The new Citysearch competitor on the www.

Pros: Being the new kid, Yelp generates a lot more excitement, and a lot more citizen reviews.

Cons: Many times you have to wade through the spam from those citizen reviews to get to an accurate comment. (Also, not one single listing in Oklahoma? Come on!)

Local sites can be the best source of fun food finds. Some faves:

Hidden LA, Brooklyn Based, Off the Beaten Path's Neat Eats, Bay Area Bites, and Roadfood.


What website do you check before heading out on date night?

 

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