Welcome To The New Infatuation feature image


Welcome To The New Infatuation

Ratings are back.

Welcome to the new Infatuation. As you can probably see, we just completed a gut renovation of our brand and website, and we’re thrilled to invite you to our housewarming party. Oh, you didn’t bring a gift? It’s fine.

Today’s upgrade is much more than a fresh coat of paint. You’ll find the website works faster, is easier to read, has improved filtering and discovery, and in our humble opinion, is a pretty solid Covid-era glow up.

But rest assured, the remodel you’re seeing today isn’t a total knockdown. All the Infatuation features you know and love are still here: the honest reviews and guides, the trustworthy takes, the “Perfect For” categories that help you find the right restaurant for any given situation.

Speaking of features you know and love, a big one is back: restaurant ratings. There are thousands of newly updated ones for you to start perusing and debating us on right now.

In June 2020, we made the decision to pull numerical ratings from The Infatuation, and to pause giving out new ones. It was necessary: restaurants were operating in an entirely different and rapidly changing reality. Our ratings no longer felt accurate or helpful. But over the past year, as we envisioned The Infatuation of the future, we made the call that we wanted to have ratings again. This decision was made for you, the reader and restaurant-goer. While there’s much more to a review than its rating, we believe ratings are the best way to help you quickly and easily find the best restaurants.

Given all the changes restaurants have gone through, we knew our old ratings, from 2020 and earlier, weren’t all going to be helpful or accurate. So every rating you see on The Infatuation today is based on or verified by a visit that happened during the past year, most of them during the second half of 2021 or later. We’re launching with well over 2,000 new ratings, with more being added daily. Not every restaurant is rated yet, because there is some limit to hours in the day and to the size of our stomachs, but we’re working on it. Close observers may notice some restaurants have the same ratings and reviews as before–in those cases, we revisited a restaurant and found that what we had to say previously still stands.

As we ventured out to assign new ratings, we did it with the insights and perspective gained during the past two years. We revamped our “ratings FAQ,” which you can find linked as a pop-up on every review, to ensure that all readers understand what our ratings signify. We also did a thorough audit of our ratings and reviews at each step of the process, ensuring that we were covering restaurants across a broad spectrum of cuisines, price points, and neighborhoods–consistent with our commitments to diversity, equity and inclusion. You’ll find the top-rated restaurants are simply places we love, be they takeout-only spots, family-owned small restaurants, or popular new places.

Restaurants are still finding their way through a strange and difficult time, and we’re keeping that top of mind as we rate them. We’re aware of the supply chain and staffing issues that restaurants still face, among other challenges. Our ratings are all about how strongly we recommend places, determined by our expertise, context, and instinct (not by a rigid rubric), which gives us the space to take the realities of the moment into consideration with each review.

Ultimately, our renovation is still a work in progress. Over the coming weeks and months, we’ll be adding more features, relaunching our app, and of course, rating a ton more restaurants. Today is just the housewarming. And really, it’s fine that you didn’t bring anything. Go help yourself to some snacks.