Seven Tips to Make Canadians’ Valentine’s Day Restaurant Reservations Even Easier

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, love is in the air and Canadians are making plans to celebrate with that special someone. But how can you ensure your dining experience is the best it can be, when everyone is rushing to make a reservation for your favourite restaurant?

At OpenTable, we love helping diners discover and book the perfect table, and we also love helping restaurants provide excellent hospitality experiences that keep guests happy and coming back. So, to help Canadians get the best dining experience this year, we’ve put together seven tips to make your Valentine’s Day one to remember:

Beat the rush: While some diners make Valentine’s Day restaurant reservations more than one month in advance, half of all reservations in Canada are booked after February 7 and 10 per cent are made on February 14*. Book early, or consider dining out on Friday or Sunday night instead. Valentine’s Day falls on a long weekend for many Canadians this year, making the choice easier.

Make your requests: Do you have a preferred seating location or a favourite booth? If so, don’t be afraid to make your request when you book. While you may not get what you ask for, putting your requests in early gives you an advantage over other diners.

The more, the merrier: If you dine in a group, you may better your chances of being seated on Valentine’s Day. Most restaurants get fully booked for tables of two, but have larger tables and booths available.

Go early or arrive later: Booking the first or last tables of the evening can also improve your chances of being seated. So sit back, relax and enjoy that glass of wine.Continue Reading

Vote for Canada’s Best New Restaurant

Screen Shot 2014-09-29 at 12.39.05 PMAirCanada’s enRoute invites you to choose the 2014 People’s Choice Award for Canada’s Best New Restaurant. Cast your vote and enter for your chance to win a trip to the gala event in November. Food writer Andrew Braithwaite will narrow down the list to his top 10 in the November issue of AirCanada enRoute magazine. Eligible restaurants must have opened between June 2013 and June 2014 to be considered for this year’s list, with intelligence gathered from a panel of the country’s leading food professionals.

The 30 nominees for Canada’s best new restaurants 2014 include:

Ayden Kitchen & Bar

Bar Buca

Black Pig Bistro

The Blacktail Florist

Byblos

The Chase

Cinara

Farmer’s Apprentice

Fat Pasha

Le Serpent

Luckee

Wolf in the Fog

Woodwork

Continue Reading

Restaurant Week Season Continues: Boston, Calgary, Chicago, Louisville, Seattle + More

PDM2014Does winter have you feeling down? Cheer up with restaurant week savings in a city near you. 

* It’s finally 502 Restaurant Week in Louisville. Order up delicious dinners for $50.20 per couple or $50.20 per person through March 5.

* Annapolis Restaurant Week has arrived. Don’t miss $15.95 two-course lunches +  $32.95 three-course dinners through March 2.

* Bet on Atlantic City Restaurant Week!  Take advantage of $15.14 lunches + $33.14 dinners, March 2-March 8.

* Sink your teeth into Calgary’s The Big Taste. Enjoy steals on meals at the city’s best restaurants, March 7-March 16.

* Chicago Chef Week blows into the Windy City in a few weeks. Book now for three-course $22 lunches + $44 dinners, March 16-March 21.

* Count us in for Dine Out Boston. Save with $15, $20 + $25 lunches and $28,$33 + $38 dinners, March 16-21 and March 23-28.

* Downtown Cleveland Restaurant Week continues. You’ll love $15 lunches + $30 dinners through March 2.

* Denver Restaurant Week is on in Mile-High City. Get on board for gourmet dinners for just $30 through February 28.

* Support local during Dine Around Seattle. Book a table for delicious prix-fixe meals, March 2-27 (excludes Friday + Saturday dinners, Saturday lunch, + Sunday brunch).

* Maryland’s Frederick Restaurant Week is almost upon us. Enjoy $15.14 + $20.14 lunches and $30.14 dinners, March 3-9.

* Hudson Valley Restaurant Week springs up in New York shortly. Make a reservation for $20.95 lunches + $29.95 dinners, March 10-23.

* It’s hip to eat out during Las Vegas Three Square Restaurant Week. Hit the open tables for $20.14 or $30.14 lunches + $30.14, $40.14, or $50.14 dinners, March 7-14.

* We’re mad about Minneapolis-St. Paul Restaurant Week. Book for $10-$20 lunches + $15-$30 dinners through February 28.

* Dine, drink, and discover during New Mexico Restaurant Week. Reserve for gourmet prix-fixe menus through March 2.

Continue Reading

EpiPens on Every Menu; Bartender vs. Mixologist; Restaurant Traffic Is Up; + More

EpiPenDining news from around the world and the web…

* Don’t mix up a bartender with a mixologist. One professional reveals why he prefers to be known as the former not the latter. [MarinIJ.com]

* An EpiPen in every restaurant. One city is taking measures to make dining out safe for food allergy sufferers. [The Spec]

* What’s in a name? A great deal because when it comes to restaurants, confusion can reign. [Philly.com]

* Five things restaurants should 86. According to the funny folks at Cracked, so, perhaps, take it with a grain of salt. [Cracked.com]

* Dining out is in. It’s always been in for us, but restaurants are now busier than ever. [USA Today]

* Celebrity chefs make great food. But maybe not all of them make the best spouses. [ExpressContinue Reading