Whether you’re itching for something to do in your home city or visiting a new place, you’ve probably run a search like “best spots to eat.” Up until now, Google would offer up a few top-rated spots from Zagat and Google Maps, but the search giant is expanding the feature to show picks from top critics and reputable publishers.
“Starting [Thursday] in the U.S., when you search on your Google app for the best spots to eat and drink, you’ll have access to reviews from top critics and best-of lists from reputable publishers,” Ronnie Falcon, product manager at Google Search, writes in a blog post.
It works like this — if you search for a term like “Chinese restaurants” in Google’s app, you’ll find yourself staring at a list of top-rated spots and a map with these locations listed. Click on one, and you’ll be greeted with the familiar Google Maps-style result that offers the restaurant’s website, menu, number, directions, hours, and more. Scroll down a little and you’ll see two new sections: “Critic reviews” and “On these lists.”
“Critic reviews” gives you a quick blurb of a review from various sites like Google-owned Zagat, or Eater, CBS Local, and UrbanDaddy. You’ll get a link to the review if you want to read it in-depth, but there are no ratings shown here.
Below that, “On these lists” shows a multitude of articles that the restaurant is mentioned in — these can range from posts like Zagat’s “8 must-try dumpling spots in NYC” to Thrillist Media Group’s “Chinese food near New York.” Clicking on these will bring you to those respective websites.
Further down below, you’ll find photos of the restaurant and Google reviews from your average Joe — but these have been there for a while.
The feature should be available for you to try now in the Google app, and note that not all restaurants will show “Critic reviews” and “On these lists.”