Consumer Attitudes Towards Fine Dining - UK - June 2011
For the purposes of this report, Mintel has defined a fine dining restaurant as follows:
- a restaurant that creates a ‘serious’ dining experience
- a restaurant that attempts to create an impeccable service experience
- a restaurant that typically hires chefs and staff from culinary schools
- a menu that features main courses most of which are more than £20.
Limited-service Restaurant (LSR)
For the purposes of this report, LSRs includes all counter-order foodservice establishments, including quick-service restaurants, pizza shops, coffee shops, snack shops, bakeries and fast casual restaurants. The common thread is that there is no table service in these venues, so diners tend to pay before receiving the food ordered.
Buffets and carveries largely work along similar lines, in that they are predominantly characterised by their self-service nature, with diners paying a flat fee and serving themselves from a selection of dishes presented in a communal area. However, both often incorporate an element of table service, if only in the form of drinks provision.
Table service is largely absent from cafeteria and canteen-style venues. Instead, diners tend to choose from a limited/fixed menu which is either pre-plated or served pre-cooked from heater display counters. A diner tends to pay at a checkout at the end of the counter row and before food is consumed. They also collect their own food and cutlery. Communal dining tables are often prevalent in these venues.
These service formats are often found in educational, medical and workplace establishments.
A food court is defined as a centralised and shared seating area for a variety of food counters serving different meals, snacks and beverages. A single or multiple operators may manage a food court. In some cases a single operator acts as a franchisee for a variety of brands. A food court is generally characterised by the self-service style of operation and the speed of delivery.
By their nature, food courts tend to be located in areas of high footfall dealing with the requirements of large volumes of consumers. Typically common locations include: retail environments such as shopping centres and outlet malls; travel hubs such as airports and railway stations; leisure venues such as theme parks and zoos; and public/staff catering venues such as hospitals and colleges.
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