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Cost of eating out in London drops for first time since 1997

09 September 2009 by
Cost of eating out in London drops for first time since 1997

The average cost of eating out in London has declined for the first time in more than a decade, a restaurant survey has found.

According to the 2010 Zagat London Restaurants survey, the average cost of a meal has fallen by 0.4% to £40.39 this year, marking the first drop since 1997.

The Zagat survey includes ratings and reviews of more than 1,100 restaurants in London and the surrounding area as voted for by over 5,500 restaurant goers. It found that 41% of those polled eat out less as a result of the economic downturn.

Tim Zagat, chief executive and co-founder of Zagat survey, said: "Londoners' dining habits have clearly changed. Quite simply, they are being more careful with their money.

"But although they're eating out less, our surveyors still take out or eat out 43% of their weekly lunches and dinners, an indication that dining in London is a part of the culture, a part of everyday life- even in these difficult times."

The Zagat survey's awards recognised a number of establishments and Gordon Ramsay and his two top female chefs Angela Hartnett and Clare Smyth had the greatest success.

Hartnett's Michelin-starred Murano, which opened in last September, was named as Best Newcomer, while Ramsay's three-Michelin-starred flagship restaurant, where Smyth is head chef, took the honours for top food (held for nine out of the last 10 years).

Wagamama retained its title of most popular restaurant, while Raymond Blanc's two-Michelin-starred Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons in Oxfordshire won the award for best service.

Gordon Ramsay beats Marcus Wareing to top spot in Zagat London restaurant guide >>

Zagat restaurant guide business could be up for sale >>

Angela Hartnett's Murano is London's best new restaurant, says Harden's >>

Pub meals now cheaper despite food inflation >>

By Gemma Sharkey

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