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Feb 28, 2011 11:47 AM

chowhound vs. yelp-pros & cons?

I think both sites are useful, yet different in approach & design. Which do you find more useful & why?

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  1. In case you see this before the moderators delete it, you'll want to take this up in the Food Media and News section:

    Here's at least one previous thread:

    EDIT: I see it got moved rather than deleted.

    1. yelp seems far too random, and i don't "know" posters there the way I do here, thus having insight into their areas of expertise. On yelp everyone seems to think they are an expert. And they (sadly) are not.

      1. For restaurant info, IMHO it depends a lot on where you live. I live in the outskirts of the Los Angeles Metro area and most of the local restos here are not patronized by any or enough CHers for the site to be of much help in that regard. While I agree that trusted CHers are a better barometer than unknown Yelpers, that isn't much help if you can't find the restaurant on CH.

        4 Replies
        1. re: Midlife

          I agree with your experience...I also live in an outlying area of LA (Calabasas). I recently was interested in trying a relatively new restaurant that opened in Calabasas called Tour Eiffel. CH had zero information on it, Yelp had one review and Open Table had over 20 reviews.

          1. re: calabasaschow

            CH usually focuses on places that are noteworthy. The Open Table reviews for Tour Eiffel suggest its obscurity is deserved.

            1. re: Peripatetic

              Got to agree with you on that...based on the OT & Yelp reviews thus far.

              1. re: Peripatetic

                I get your point but CH is not of any help if it doesn't cover a restaurant at all. I wish I could only patronize places good enough to get a mention, but that's not practical for everyday needs as it covers only a very small number of places in 'homogenized suburbia'. Yelp at least gives me some frame of reference when CH comes up empty, albeit often requiring sifting through the 'jughead' posts there.

                I suspect that the underlying issue is more one of user numbers in an outlying area, combined with an overall lack of 'better' restaurants altogether, but knowing why there are no reviews doesn't help with the purpose of deciding whether to try a place. You'd really have to lof in some time looking for local CH resto reviews to capture how often one comes up empty in South OC.

          2. Living as I do in Akron, Ohio, I find yelp very handy, as there are MANY more local reviewers on that site for smaller towns, such as mine, than here.

            Like others are saying, there are often some "less experienced" eaters reviewing some places, so it's good to take the reviews with a grain of salt, but yelp can still give you a good idea of basically what to expect.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Cherveny

              agree.. I travel a lot with work and when CH fails me I go to yelp. If the person is smart enough to make their own choice based on reviews I do not think yelp is at a lower level than CH

            2. To me; Yelp is a one trick pony with not very knowledgeable trainers.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Quine

                ROFL! However, occasionally a nugget of gold can be found in the pile of scat.

                To echo what has been said before, CH is about discussion and Yelp is about 'reviews' *cough*.

                To use Yelp successfully, look for maturity, balance and relevance.
                Raving about chips, salsa and margaritas does Not a Mexican restaurant review make.