MetaFlavor: Probably The Best Way To Search For Restuarants Near Your Area

logoI know that there are actually many services on the web or even an iPhone App that shows food lovers the nearest restaurants nearby. Meta Flavor brings it to a higher level which offers complex but useful features such as searching for your favorite food in a particular area, a menu of the dishes and price listings, an amazing advanced search that filters your results and many more!


Touted as the “Deliciously Smart Search”, it boasts over 4 million flavors, 100,000 menus, 2.5 million photos and 615,000 restaurants in their database. According to the site, it says that the founder of this impressive Web tool is Dr. Hansoff – a world renowned researcher and a Nobel Peace Prize Winner. It further explains how it works “While you browse menus, look at delicious food, rate restaurants and dishes Meta Flavor works in the background. We map out the associations between the food, flavor, and ingredients represented by our restaurants, your unique tastes and community preferences. This results in us having the ability to give you smart recommendations.”

Powered by Google Maps and Flash, you can basically search for any food you want, be it pizza, sushi or coffee ice cream. To find restaurants located nearby, enter the specific location for example Long Beach, CA. You will then be presented a map with dots representing a restaurant related to your search query. By clicking on it, it will shows you a thumbnail of the restaurant and full address.


Here’s the best part. Unlike other compliment services, users can get directions of how to head to that place and find out how well the overall performance is (categorized into food, service, ambiance and value). Another interesting feature which Meta Flavor offers is a menu and prices accompanying with each dishes. There are even reviews and photos written or uploaded by other users. Besides all these, you can narrow your search by selecting the range in miles from a location using a slider and a useful filter system that lets you browse restaurants which matches your needs or wants.


Even though, many would think that Meta Flavor looks prefect, but actually there are quite a few downsides which I would like to talk about it. First of all, since the site is powered by Flash, it works quite slow for me. Also, it currently doesn’t support international restaurants (only in the United States), probably it’s due to lack of ability and the difficultly to compile all the information. But at least the folks there should expand the reach to other popular cities like London, Madrid, Beijing, Taipei, Moscow, etc. If they do so, an increasing number of people will use it especially tourists who are unsure of the specialties of a particular city.

So what’s my take? Well, I’ve tried out Meta Flavor and the experience is really cool, especially I love playing around with the filter system and find out how much each dish costs as compared to other restaurants. I suggest you to try it out. You’ll definitely love it.

Maybe they should implement their wonderful idea on the popular iPhone by creating an app for food lovers to search their favorite food near their area easily and fast. Most likely, it would attract thousands of downloads!