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BUSINESS
December 12, 2012 | By Tiffany Hsu
You've got gifts covered for your significant other, your best friend and your mom. But what about the mailman? The gardener? The poor, neglected schoolteacher? That's where tipping comes in. Compared to last year 88% of Americans plan to tip the same amount in 2012, according to a new survey of 1,719 people from Zagat. Nearly half do it to express their gratitude for services. Four in 10 tip to reward hard work and valuable help. Ten percent of Americans tip out of obligation, while 1% are pressured into it out of fear of backlash.
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BUSINESS
August 20, 2010 | By Sharon Bernstein, Los Angeles Times
With consumers and businesses keeping a lid on expenses, more and more small and mid-size restaurants are throwing in their dish towels and closing up shop. Southern California lost nearly a thousand more restaurants than it gained during the 12 months that ended in March, representing a net 2% drop that was twice the national average, according to the New York research firm NPD Group. Nearly all the closings were among independently owned restaurants: small, family businesses that just couldn't hold on as customers held back.
BUSINESS
December 29, 2010 | By Sharon Bernstein, Los Angeles Times
The bubbly may sparkle on New Year's Eve at the nation's restaurants, but business itself is expected to be essentially flat ? despite signs the economy is improving. Nationwide, restaurants are expecting a 1% drop in patrons Dec. 31 compared to last year. That's about the same amount of decline in business for all of 2010, according to the NPD Group. Todd Johnson, general manager of Lawry's the Prime Rib in Beverly Hills, said his restaurant is offering patrons a champagne toast at midnight, but no extravagant party.
TRAVEL
February 12, 2012
If you find Yelp and Urbanspoon - let alone Foodspotting - to be too much work when you're searching for great restaurants in a new town, try a robot. Name: Alfred Available for: Android, iPhone, iPad What it does: This app analyzes your likes and recommends restaurants based on your previous favorites. Cost: Free What's hot: You don't have to spend ages in its initial quiz for Alfred to figure out what you like. ("Hi. I'm Alfred!
NEWS
May 1, 2013
Jonathan Gold, the Los Angeles Times' Pulitzer Prize-winning restaurant critic and self-proclaimed “belly of Los Angeles,” is selecting his 101 favorite restaurants for a special section to be published in The Times on May 23. And if you're lucky, you could get an advance peek and a sampling from some of those hot spots. On May 21, The Times and Gold are hosting Bite Nite, an intimate tasting event with more than 20 selected restaurants. A limited number of tickets are available, and they will be sold only to Times members, starting May 8. Lunchtime with Mr. Gold The featured restaurants cover the rich variety of food in Los Angeles and include Alma, Chichen Itza, Corazon y Miel, Cut, Guelaguetza, Hart & Hunter, Jitlada, Ink, La Casita Mexicana, Lucques, Meals by Genet, Mozza, Sqirl and  more.
FOOD
July 18, 2007 | By Russ Parsons, Times Staff Writer
WHEN chef Christopher Blobaum was opening Wilshire restaurant in Santa Monica, he wanted to do the right thing, both culinarily and environmentally. He buys much of the restaurant's produce at local farmers markets and sources meat and fish carefully. He uses solar-heated water for dishwashing and low-output fluorescent lighting. The deck out back is made from recycled lumber (and is built in a way that preserves the property's existing mature trees). Tables are set with woven vinyl Chilewich placemats that can be rinsed and reused instead of white linen tablecloths that need to be washed and bleached.
NEWS
December 12, 2012 | By Jay Jones
Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay will open two restaurants next week along Las Vegas ' ever-glittering Strip. Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill launches Tuesday at Caesars Palace , and Gordon Ramsay BurGR will open Dec. 22 at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino . With Ramsay, a Scot who grew up in Stratford-on-Avon, at the helm, the Pub & Grill promises the feel and flavors of an authentic English eatery. It will be a restaurant serving dishes such as lamb T-bone and Cornish chicken and a pub with 36 beers on tap and 24 more in bottles.
BUSINESS
June 22, 2011 | By Sharon Bernstein, Los Angeles Times
Call it sticker shock. Deborah Jourdan just can't stomach the menu at California Pizza Kitchen anymore. But the problem is not the price or the food. It's the calories. "I looked at the menu, and it said there were 1,100 calories in a plate of pasta," the 22-year-old North Hollywood resident said. Salads can run 1,400 calories or more. Pizza? Up to 1,500. That was earlier this year, and she hasn't been back since. "I don't think I'd go back there now," said Jourdan, eating a salad and a cookie at Panera Bread in Burbank, "because I'd be afraid there would be nothing for me to eat. " It's a scenario that worries restaurateurs across the nation.
TRAVEL
June 5, 2011 | By S. Irene Virbila, Times Restaurant Critic
Remember when it seemed preposterous that a French three-star chef would sign on for a restaurant in Las Vegas? And it turned out that not one but four highly decorated French chefs eventually launched Vegas outposts? Even in these rocky economic times, Vegas is sprouting new restaurants. As long as visitors keep rolling their bags up to hotel reception desks, Vegas keeps building. Latest entry? The Cosmopolitan, and in its wake a starry collection of restaurants from well-known chefs and restaurateurs.
BUSINESS
November 17, 2011 | By Tiffany Hsu, Los Angeles Times
Instead of battling supermarket crowds and cleaning gravy-drenched kitchens, 30 million Americans will rely on restaurants this year for at least part of their Thanksgiving meals. The National Restaurant Assn. said 14 million people will eat their holiday dinner at restaurants, while 16 million will get takeout for all or part of their feast. But restaurant eating on Turkey Day is expected to be down this year. The association forecast that 6% of people across the country will have the big meal at eateries, compared with 11% last year.
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