Do Restaurants Hike Their Prices After Good Reviews?

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What would a rave review of an acclaimed critic do to a restaurant’s menu prices? Send them skyrocketing?

Reuters finance blogger Felix Salmon, with the assistance of New York magazine intern Ray Rahman, tracked the price changes in restaurants reviewed by two trusted critics: The New York TimesSam Sifton and New York’s Adam Platt. It turns out the answer falls a bit flat: there is very little correlation.

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It varied at most places; prices of some dishes went up while others went down. The only pattern he noticed was that the few places that had obvious price-raise after the reviews were the ones that got mediocre reviews, not the raves.

A key takeaway from this study: menu prices can’t be the marker of a good restaurant. It’s part of the marketing strategy that doesn’t say much about your dining experience — except the bill.

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