10 Reasons to Dine Out on Thanksgiving

TDay DinnerWe fancy ourselves foodies here at OpenTable, and while many of us know our way around the kitchen, we’re huge fans of dining out on Thanksgiving Day. No shopping, no dirty dishes – no problem. Plus, no tipsy people passed out on your sofa for hours (or is that just my family?). But beyond those obvious perks, here are a few more reasons culled from at-home Thanksgiving dining disasters that will convince you to put yourself in the hands of culinary professionals and celebrate the holiday at a restaurant.

1. Dressing not typically served in a used neti pot at restaurants.

2. While onion, lemon, and carrots are often used when roasting a turkey in a restaurant kitchen, gravel is not.

3. Turkey is not presented, to quote Neneh Cherry, raw like sushi at restaurants.

4. You can trust that your mashed potatoes are, in fact, mashed potatoes – and not baby food.

5. Delicious housemade gravy will run all over your turkey rather than down the drain.

6. Your dinner is far less likely to be lost at sea

7.eaten by a dog,

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Chef Charlie Palmer on Bringing His Take on Steak to New York City, Longevity, Luger’s + More

CP-BlogThis fall, chef-restaurateur Charlie Palmer opened Charlie Palmer Steak in the Big Apple, a much-welcomed addition to Manhattan’s midtown east neighborhood. Joining sibling Charlie Palmer Steak restaurants located in Las Vegas, Reno, and Washington, D.C., Palmer and his team are ready to wow savvy steak-loving New Yorkers with carefully sourced and deliciously prepared meats (and more). Renowned for his restaurants, hotels, and food-forward wine shops around the nation, he discusses the Charlie Palmer Steak menu, how his restaurant differs from the fabled Peter Luger, what’s in chef Matthew Zappoli’s signature cocktail sauce (sort of!), and diners’ longstanding love affair with the steakhouse in this exclusive Q+A.

You’re a native New Yorker and you opened your very first restaurant, Aureole, there. You have other locations of Charlie Palmer Steak around the nation — what made you decide to bring Charlie Palmer Steak to Manhattan at this point?

I’m actually from upstate New York, a small town called Smyrna, surrounded by farming communities. I opened Aureole in 1988 here in New York City, followed by Astra (which we just closed this year and are reopening as Upper Story in the next month), Kitchen 22, Kitchen 82, Metrazur, and more. So, I’ve long had a footprint and a place in New York City. We’ve been searching for the right location for a Charlie Palmer Steak in Manhattan for quite some time, and this one landed in my lap earlier this year.

Dating back to Peter Luger, the steakhouse feels like a very New York convention. What are the challenges of this market? What do diners expect from a New York steakhouse — and how do you deliver that?

It’s true. The steakhouse, or actually the ‘beefsteak’, has been a New York tradition since the 1800s. I think the challenges are numerous, but so are the successes. There are a ton of steakhouses in this town, so it’s about standing out, serving top quality beef, and providing the best service. My philosophy on steakhouses has always been different from the Luger format. I don’t want it to be a men’s club – I want it to be a place where men and women are both equally comfortable and the food goes beyond the beef — to really thoughtful, composed seafood dishes and hearty salads.

Why do you think we, as a nation of diners, have such a longstanding love affair with steakhouses? What is the ongoing allure? Continue Reading

Chicago 2015 Michelin-Starred Restaurants: Book a Table Today!

grace blgoOpenTable is pleased to highlight the honorees in the MICHELIN Guide Chicago 2015. Twenty-four restaurants are included, with two Chicago restaurant receiving the Michelin three-star level, the highest recognition in the culinary world, and three achieving two Michelin stars. Nineteen restaurants earned one Michelin star, including goosefoot and Moto.

Being included in the respected MICHELIN Guide is a sign of excellence and quality. In the U.S., Chicago is one of only three cities where Michelin publishes an annual guide. The others are New York and San Francisco. The MICHELIN Guide New York 2015 was published October 1, and the MICHELIN Guide San Francisco 2015 was released on November 12.

Congratulations to all the recipients, including:

Three Stars: Grace.

Two Stars: L20 and Sixteen.

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OpenTable Reviews Reveal #DinersChoice Top 100 Steakhouses in America — with Slideshow

In a nod to the long and rich history of the American steakhouse, we are pleased to honor the inaugural 2014 Diners’ Choice Award winners for the Top 100 Steakhouses in America. These awards reflect the combined opinions of more than 5 million restaurant reviews submitted by verified OpenTable diners for more than 20,000 restaurants in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

Including well-established meat meccas and newer steak restaurants, the complete list of award winners spans 32 states and Washington, D.C., and includes Bones in Atlanta, Killen’s Steakhouse in Pearland, Texas, and Lawry’s The Prime Rib in Las Vegas. Texas, the top beef producer in the nation, has the greatest number of winners with 15, followed by Ohio with seven winners. California, Florida, Louisiana, and North Carolina each boast six winning restaurants, while Georgia has five, and Arizona and Illinois have four apiece. Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Wisconsin each count three honorees. Colorado, Idaho, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New York, Oregon, Virginia, and Washington, respectively, have two award winners. Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Washington, D.C., and West Virginia are also represented.

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