How to Write a Restaurant Review
The point of writing a review is to give information about the good & bad aspects (if any!) about the dining establishment.
What should be the style of the review?
It should be in a chatty style to make it fun to read & not in a boring formal style.
What aspects should be emphasized in a review?
All aspects are important – the location, the exterior, the ambience, the decor & furnishings, the menu, the table settings, the service, and, of course, the food.
What are the ways to describe the various aspects?
* The location: Is it easy to locate with some major landmark nearby? Is it a busy commercial area? Is it primarily a residential area? Is there parking space?
* The exterior: Does the restaurant have indoor & outdoor space? If only indoor space, is there seating space outside for waiting diners? Is there any overhead awning? Is a staff member outside to take reservations or parcel orders?
* The ambience: Is the atmosphere a cheerful one or is it a dull depressing place?
* The decor & furnishings: What is the lighting system – soft/dim/harsh/garish lighting? Are the walls covered with some kind of paintings or other decorative designs? What is the seating arrangement?
* The menu : Was the menu design anything extraordinary? What is the least expensive & the most expensive item listed in the menu? What is the variety of cuisine listed? Is there a separate wine list?
* The table settings: How is the table top – glass, wood, Formica, etc? Were glasses, & table napkins already set?
* The service: How was the attire of the staff (e.g. if a festival is on-going, then the waiters could be in traditional clothes matching the festival)? Did the waiter come quickly to take your order? Did the food come to the table quickly? Was any food item not ordered brought to your table? Did the waiter hover around the table in an irritating manner?
* The food: Was it bland, spicy, salty, too sweet? What exactly did you / your group eat? Were the prices worth it?
Be creative: Basically in writing a restaurant review you should use different kinds of words when describing the decor and the food. You cannot use the word ‘nice’ and ‘tasty’ or ‘delicious’ repeatedly! To find different kinds of words and not sound like a parrot, type out your review in a Word doc. on your computer; check out other similar words by using the computer dictionary [Tools-Language-Thesaurus].
Enhance your review with photos if possible. If you have a digital camera with you, you can take photos of the food too. It is very important, however, to always ask for permission to take photos inside the restaurant. Some establishments are very strict about taking photographs and you must always respect rules & regulations. If at all you are asked why you are taking a photograph, you can simply say you are trying out your new camera! Naturally, you should not state that you are going to write a review too – then it is guaranteed that the management will go out of their way to please you & you will not get the real picture!