Chez Nous wins out over Chez Panisse

Admittedly, it’s an unfair headline. Chez Panisse, Alice Waters’ fabled restaurant and the birthplace of California’s food renaissance, is probably weathering the economic storm quite nicely, thank you. But a story in Wednesday’s Business section of the San Francisco Chronicle confirmed what many already suspected: grocery stores are faring better than restaurants in this recession.

Why? More people are cooking and eating at home, evidently. While grocery prices are rising, restaurants are raising their prices, too, just to keep their heads above water and an already expensive dining experience is only becoming even pricier. But even grocers are feeling the pinch. While discount retailers Costco and Wal-Mart are seeing strong sales, according to Chron reporter Victoria Colliver, high-end chains like Whole Foods are seeing troublesome declines in their bottom line.

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