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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Trends: Sushi's the Craze – But the Burger's Still King

Itar-Tass
Comcon research company recently released results of an annual TGI-Russia survey of 2,035 Muscovites' eating-out preferences, which revealed fast food -- particularly McDonald's -- is the flavor of choice.

During the last six months of 2006, the percentage of the capital's residents aged 16 or older who ate in a fast-food restaurant was 54.4 percent, while 21.2 percent ate in a cafe or coffeehouse, 20.1 percent ate from a street eatery, 15.6 percent ate at some other form of restaurant, 11.2 percent ate at a pub or beer bar, and 6.3 percent ate at some other form of bar.

The average monthly sum spent on eating out was $42, with 19.8 percent spending not less than $53, 15.9 percent spending from $53 to $19 and 23.6 percent spending less than $19. The remainder either refused to answer or did not eat out.

When Muscovites were asked where they had dined, the 10 most-often named restaurant chains were (percentage of people who named the restaurant): McDonald's (64.5 percent), Rostik's (26.2 percent), Kroshka-Kartoshka (21.9 percent), Yolki-Palki (20.1 percent), Mu-Mu (16.2 percent), Sbarro (15.4 percent), Coffee House (12.7 percent), Il Patio (12.4 percent), Shokoladnitsa (12 percent) and Planeta Sushi (9.7 percent).

Sushi's popularity shouldn't be underestimated, however.

"Japanese food has become very popular, and in the past several years, Moscow has been totally sushinized," said Masha Vakatova, communications director at Comcon, summing up the trends. "People are queuing to get inside," she added.

"The share of people who eat out is increasing from year to year with income growth. The number of fast-food and table-service restaurants will see growth in the future as well, as people get the taste of going out and enjoy atmosphere, service, etc. ... besides good food. Although service is not yet as good as in the West, unfortunately.

"It is also interesting to note that in the West, people continue eating out in their old age. Twenty-five percent of citizens of London and 42 percent of Paris aged 65 and over eat in restaurants not less than once a month. In Moscow, the share of these people is only 2.7 percent."