I love helping friends and family find great restaurants. People will ask for help with specific situations like, “My family is in town and I want to take them out for a nice dinner but somewhere not too expensive” or “What are some great cheap eats in the Mission [in San Francisco]?” I find existing restaurant review websites a poor solution for these cases. They all score places in an absolute way, rather than situationally. What is a “4.5 star restaurant”, what the heck does that even mean?
More often than not the appeal of a place will vary based on your situation: a delicious, hole-in-the-wall noodle shop is perfect for lunch with friends, but the wrong fit for dinner with the parents. I’ve always wanted to create a recommendation engine that dispenses with absolute ratings and allows the user to say a little bit about their situation, and have the ratings tailored to that situation, so that all kinds of places can be considered “great” depending on the context.
This doc is for people who want to quickly jot down impressions of restaurants, bars, and cafes that they visit, and use that data to power customizable recommendations. It works best with collaborators, if you share the doc with your friends so they can all contribute their favorite places, but it works great individually as well. When somebody asks you for a recommendation, share the doc and let them indicate their situation, be it a sit-down dinner for a special occasion or a quick bite in a new neighborhood, or use it yourself to discover new places based on your friends’ ratings.
Engineering at Coda