We don’t know about your area, but in Denver it seems like there has been a recent explosion in the number of new restaurants. From our personal observations, the increase seems to be tied to more and more low to mid cost restaurants opening; i.e. Chipotle, Panera Bread, Noodles & Co and Garbanzos.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics the average American household spends $2678 or approximately 40% of our food expenditures away from the house. Yes, you read that correctly, 40%. Now we are all aware that food typically prepared away from home costs more than what we can buy and prepare for ourselves.