For the first time ever, sales at restaurants and bars in the U.S. have outpaced sales at grocery stores.
But we’re not here to judge. We’re here to help.
To wit: the 13 apps that’ll help you find the perfect meal outside of your home.
Translate Chinese, Japanese and Korean menus by simply pointing your phone at them. The app also has pronunciation guides and just launched a photo food feature that provides additional context (in words and pictures) for 4,000+ Chinese dishes.
The Rotten Tomatoes of food, this new app aggregates restaurant reviews from Facebook, Google, Yelp, TripAdvisor, Zomato and Foursquare.
Food writers are the worst (well, second worst; Yelp reviewers take the cake). Instead, let the people cooking the food tell you where to go or what dishes to get.
Like restaurant food, but hate the whole dining-out experience? Allset allows you to book and order a meal before you even arrive at a restaurant, cutting down your dining time to under 30 minutes. Bonus: Besides the app, you can now use Allset via Facebook Messenger bot.
From our friends at Tasting Table: just plug in your neighborhood, cuisine of choice and occasion, and DINE delivers you ace lunch, dinner, bar or date recs in a matter of seconds. The app is caveman-easy to navigate, the photos are beautiful and you only see reviews from heavily credentialed sources (the New York Times, New York Mag et al).
Add a social element to your meals. This service sends foodies to communal tables with up-and-coming chefs in pretty much every major global city
Similar to Eatwith with a side of Airbnb, this site (app coming soon) lets you book a home-cooked meal with accommodating hosts around the world.
Find food trucks by location, cuisine or business hours (or just book one for a private event).
It’s less for the discerning foodie/boozehound and more for fun, adventurous types (or dates). Using a combo of Yelp and Foursquare, BR picks a bar for you based on desired location … and keeps it a secret until you arrive in an Uber that the app books for you.
Too Good to Go
Good for our food waste problem, good for cheap meals (at least in Europe), this app lets diners buy and consume the food that restaurants (typically high-end) throw away at the end of the day. Hopefully coming to the U.S. soon.
Off the Menu
A simple app that spotlights hidden or limited-time menu items.
A hybrid of services we already use (OpenTable, e.g.), Reserve books you tables (including some at places that normally don’t take reservations) and helps divvy up your dining bill, all right within the app.