SAN FRANCISCO — As restaurateurs prepare to welcome the Valentine’s Day crowd next week, OpenTable has published survey results indicating diners are less interested in the prix-fixe menus of the past and are preparing to open their wallets wider this year.
“The idea of a romantic Valentine’s Day meal often conjures up images of lavish tasting menus, enchanting small plates and prix-fixe menus,” said Caroline Potter, chief dining officer at OpenTable.
“However, our survey revealed some surprising insights into how people want to celebrate Valentine’s Day and an indication of romantic trends to come.”
Respondents said the key factors in selecting a Valentine’s Day restaurant are positive reviews (34 per cent), romantic ambience (27 per cent) and service (16 per cent). When ordering, diners said they would prefer à la carte (67 per cent) over prix-fixe (33 per cent) and are willing to spend an average of $139 per check, which is 63 per cent more than the OpenTable check average of $85 per couple.
The San Francisco-based OpenTable facilitates online bookings for more than 26,000 restaurants in Canada, the U.S., Germany, Japan, Mexico and the U.K.