Is Fine Dining Dead?

Is fine dining dead? To hear some restaurateurs tell it, the whole concept went out the window when the housing market went south and the American public began to realize that they could no longer afford to go out to eat; at least not at fine dining establishments. However, a new survey was published recently by Restaurant Rx which seems to dispute that assertion.

Fine Dining is Evolving, Not Dead

Some make the claim that fine dining has gone the way of vinyl records, i.e., something a handful of connoisseurs still appreciate but that the masses, even those who could afford to care, have passed by. Yet others still claim that fine dining is alive and well. The only thing is that fine dining has been changing dramatically over the past few years.

Food Quality? Why Would You Even Ask?

One of the key points the study made was that food quality is really not even on the table as a definition for fine dining today. It’s simply assumed that it’s going to happen – of course we’ll see fine dining. However, the things those respondents to the survey still look for and define as part of the “fine dining” experience as opposed to casual dining is service and VIP treatment for their time in a restaurant. In other words, as always, it’s all about the experience – about being pampered and getting a wonderful experience.

Personalized Treatment Expected

Another thing respondents said they expect from fine dining establishments is the personal touch. They want to see that the waiters pamper them and cater to their needs. However, that said, respondents to the survey still noted that they would tend to favor restaurants based on the cuisine that was offered and whether they happened to enjoy it. They responded that they expect to dine repeatedly in restaurants that are “favorites” and will choose their favorites based on the food more than anything else.

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