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Southern food tops this year’s trend

The South will rise again, at least, on the New York City restaurant scene. According to the 2012 Zagat guide to city dining, Southern food tops this year’s trends, thanks to newcomers like...

india Updated: Oct 07, 2011 11:51 IST

The South will rise again, at least, on the New York City restaurant scene. According to the 2012 Zagat guide to city dining, Southern food tops this year’s trends, thanks to newcomers like chef Marcus Samuelsson’s Red Rooster and The Cardinal, an East Village eatery dishing up okra, smothered pork chops and fried green tomatoes. Other trends include on-site gardens providing roof-to-table ingredients.

Last month, Google Inc. bought the 32-year-old Zagat. This edition is the first New York guide since the takeover. Tim Zagat, who founded the company with his wife, Nina, said readers won’t notice the difference. “The survey was largely completed before the deal closed,” Zagat said. The survey is also the first since NYC’s letter-grade system for sanitation forced every restaurant to post an A, B or C in its window. More than four out of five surveyors said they approved of the grading system. Zagat said that creates “a huge pressure on the restaurant to maintain their high grade.”

The most popular restaurant was Le Bernardin, chef Eric Ripert’s French seafood temple. Surveyors said its “starchy” service, “reverential” crowd and “civilised” milieu combined for an “unforgettable” experience. The top decor prize went to Asian fusion restaurant Asiate and Per Se took the honours for best service. The guide is indexed by categories including Gluten-Free Options, College Centric, Critic Proof, Hipster, Offbeat, Quick Bite, Stargazing and Tough Tickets. A total of 2,111 restaurants were reviewed by 41,604 surveyors.

The average price of a meal out in New York rose more than four per cent to $43.46. Food trucks were also on the rise. Diners gave the thumbs down to coupon discount providers. And nearly two-thirds frowned upon texting, tweeting or talking on cell phones while dining, reveals the guide.



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