On Our Plate: July Restaurant Weeks in Baton Rouge, Charlotte, LA, MSP, NYC + More; Taste of the Nation Tickets; Taste of the Twin Cities

foodspotting 4
Capture even more delicious dishes with Foodspotting for iPhone 4.

Happenings on and around OpenTable…

* Save 20% on tickets to Taste of the Nation South Florida on July 25. Purchase tickets today.

* Attend the 8th Annual Taste of the Twin Cities Originals on July 25. Learn more here.

* Take advantage of a 15% discount for Taste of the Nation Orlando tickets on August 10. Buy yours now.

* OpenTable for Windows 8 is out! Find out about our latest app.

* Cheers to the winners of the 2013 Diners’ Choice Awards for the Top 100 Hottest Restaurant Bars. Find out if your fave is on the list.

* We got a visit from San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee. Peep the pics from Tech Tuesday!

* Foodspotting 4 for iPhone has hit the app store!  Check out the shiny new “Food Camera” for iPhone to capture even more mouthwatering pics.

* Toronto Summerlicious is on. Enjoy $15, $20, or $25 lunches and $25, $35, or $45 dinners, July 5-21.

* Allez! New York City French Restaurant Week is hereBook now for amazing prix-fixe $17.89 meals at the city’s finest French restaurants, July 8-14.

* Mpls.St.Paul Magazine’s Restaurant Week is back in action this summer. Take advantage of $10-$20 lunches and $15-$30 dinners, July 14-19.

* Baton Rouge Restaurant Week is headed your way. Don’t miss three courses for $15-$35, July 15-20Continue Reading

Trending on OpenTable Restaurant Reviews: Lobster Rolls

lobster-roll-samsHave you shaken off the long holiday weekend yet? Neither have I, and it’s thanks, in part, to the delicious lobster rolls I ate. I am literally having a lobster roll letdown, as though every tasty bite wasn’t enough. Feeling it was part of my patriotic duty, I was sure to try both styles — the Connecticut lobster roll, served with melted butter, and the Maine-style lobster roll, which is made with mayonnaise and celery. They’re both, obviously, delicious (Because, hello, sweet lobster meat plus bread!). However, as someone who could eat Duke’s mayo straight out of the jar, it practically pains me to admit that the buttery elegance of the Connecticut-style lobster roll is my favorite. OpenTable diners held their own quests for the very best lobster rolls during their eating adventures recently. Find out which restaurants’ rolls are receiving rave reviews. 

Atlanta Fish Market, Atlanta, Georgia: “Since lobster is in season and one of the specials, we tried the lobster roll. It was fantastic, and I highly recommend it.”

Barking Crab, Boston, Massachusetts: “By far the best lobster roll I’ve had. The ‘naked’ lobster roll is a fresh-cracked lobster dressed with melted butter on a grilled hot dog roll and served with French fries, coleslaw, and a pickle. Perfect. Don’t know that I’ll ever find a better lobster roll than this! So good. Simple and delicious.”

Castle Hill Inn, Newport, Rhode Island: “My girlfriend order the lobster roll, which, I have to say, was huge. It was made with creme fraiche instead of mayo, which she enjoyed, with plenty of lobster.”

Central Park Boathouse, New York, New York: “The lobster roll was perfect. Huge pieces of sweet lobster tossed with a bit of mayo with bits of crunchy celery, lined in a soft bun. Absolutely delicious.”

DANTE, Tremont, Ohio: “Every bite was delicious. Of particular note — the lobster rolls with a creamy buttery sauce.”

The Diving Horse, Avalon, New Jersey: “A new addition to the menu (since I was there last fall) is the lobster roll appetizer, and it is out of this world. Warm roll, packed with lobster, simply outstanding.”

GT Fish and Oyster, Chicago, Illinois: This place is simply amazing – from the amazing mixologists at the bar to the sea-salt caramel and banana dessert – AND the best lobster roll west of Pawtucket. It’s one of the most exciting seafood restaurants I have had the pleasure to visit (and I was born and raised on the shoreline of New England).” Continue Reading

Everything But the Grill: Fourth of July Restaurant Dishes Help You Declare Your Independence

Tomorrow is Independence Day in the U.S. Fireworks aren’t the only fourth of July tradition. There are a whole host of dishes and ingredients that have come to define the holiday. And, thanks to the pros, you don’t have to prepare them yourself! There are plenty of restaurants open for business on the Fourth of July. And, many serve up delightful versions of the foods that we associate so closely with this national holiday. Whet your appetite with some of our favorites, courtesy of Foodspotting, and then book a reservation!

Lobster Roll

Todd English P.U.B. prepared this delish take on the traditional lobster roll.

Strawberry Shortcake

This simple dessert gets a regal update, courtesy of Gramercy Tavern in New York City.

Watermelon Gazpacho

Keep your cool with watermelon gazpacho, such as this bowl of refreshing goodness served up by The Spence in Atlanta.

Grilled Steak

No one is saying you can’t grill, but can you grill a hangar steak like the pros at Tilth in Seattle?


The Black Label Burger by  Minetta Tavern in Manhattan.
Accept no substitutes.

Housemade Hot Dog

Cooking hot dogs is easy, but making them like the chefs at Absinthe Brasserie in San Francisco? Not so much.

Grilled Corn

The chefs at Miss Lily’s in NYC kick up grilled corn with jerk mayo and toasted coconut.

Blueberry Pie

Blueberries realize their full flavor potential in this icebox blueberry pie from Hungry Mother in Cambridge, Massachusetts.


Trending on OpenTable Restaurant Reviews: Smoked Trout

trout-saladSmoked trout has fast become one of my favorite things to find on a menu, perhaps because it seems to pair perfectly with a martini. And, also, because it’s downright delicious. Turns out, I’m not alone. While most of what we diners enjoy at restaurants are smoked in-house, the recent $4.5 million expansion of fish smoker Ducktrap River in Belfast, Maine, indicates that many of us have developed a new appetite for smoked trout. Used in salads, sandwiches, spreads, mousses, and more, smoked trout is packed with protein and has a modest calorie count. Find out what OpenTable diners are saying about this smoky, salty fish dish.

*Alder, New York, New York: “Must haves: the fried cauliflower and the smoked trout and asparagus huevos revueltos.”

BIX, San Francisco, California: “Caesar salad and smoked trout salad are both worth ordering. Duck is always good there. Beautiful restaurant, traditional menu imaginatively done, reasonable service, and live music.”

Blue Ribbon Bakery Kitchen, New York, New York: “The smoked trout salad and beef marrow appetizers were outstanding.”

Blue Ridge Dining Room-Grove Park Inn, Asheville, North Carolina: “The smoked trout and smoked shrimp are the best in the world! Worth the whole trip to Asheville.”

The Bull Valley Roadhouse, Port Costa, California: “The food is unpretentious but simply delicious.The fried chicken was the best I have ever had, and the smoked trout salad was divine.”

* The Dandelion, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: “Pretty much everything we ate was unbelievably delicious. Smoked trout salad is incredibly flavorful while still being subtle.”

Dovetail, New York, New York: “We devoured the ‘put up’ starter plate — lima bean hummus, bacon marmalade, pimento cheese, and smoked trout spread — before going to the main course, which was shrimp with pumpkin seed pesto on pasta. Lots of options from small plate to gargantuan, lots of variety. Fresh ingredients prepared well, excellent service. A new favorite.” Continue Reading