There’s been a lot of talk in the industry lately about unfair restaurant reviews. An unnecessarily cruel review – especially if written with the intent to inflict harm – can cause real damage to the people who put their heart and soul into their business, not to mention the reputation of the restaurant in question.
Because Eat Out is a platform that’s about uplifting the industry, we want to shine a light on the great food writing out there, to encourage high-quality, fair and balanced reviewing in the online world, which is so often blighted by trolls and bullying.
To this end, Eat Out is on the hunt for the first-ever winner of our Best Reader Reviewer award. We’re looking to elevate a food lover who shows talent and knowledge, and who writes consistently fair, useful reviews.
The winner will be announced at the Eat Out Mercedes-Benz Best Everyday Eateries celebrations in October, along with the restaurant winners of all our other categories, which are determined by ratings by readers and critics. (Read more about the Best Everyday Eateries here.)
It neither raves exclusively about the positive points nor rants only about negatives. A good review will give credit where credit is due, but also mention any areas for improvement.
Writing reviews online can feel like posting something into the void, but it’s important to remember that you’re still talking about people – living, breathing, fallible human beings, just like you. Some reviews might contain points of criticism, but the feedback needs to be constructive and decent. Eat Out does not tolerate hate speech, trolling or personal attacks.
The review needs to be precise and useful. Being specific about your dining experience arms the reader with vital information, and helps them to judge whether they would enjoy the restaurant themselves.
It covers all the bases
For some people, food is the most important factor. For others, it’s the vibe, or the service. A review that mentions food and drink, service, and atmosphere will be most helpful.
A lot of information needs to be packed into a small space. Long-form reviews have a place, but shorter, to-the-point reviews are more useful to people who are trying to make decisions about where to eat.
If you’re keen on entering for this award, write a review of a restaurant you’ve visited recently and post it on our site. Even better: write reviews of two or three restaurants. Your chances of winning will improve if there’s more than one review to showcase the consistency of your work. Also remember that for each review posted on the site, Eat Out will pledge a meal for a hungry child through Rise Against Hunger SA (formerly known as Stop Hunger Now SA). All reviews posted during the Best Everyday Eateries awards period, between 1 October 2016 and 31 August 2017, will be eligible for the Best Reader Review award. Judging will be conducted by Eat Out editor Abigail Donnelly and the editorial panel.