Winterlicious starts Friday January 25

Tomorrow is the first day of Winterlicious presented by American Express. Today the City of Toronto released statistics from the latest Ipsos Reid survey results indicating that the program is a boon for business and more popular than ever with diners and restaurants.

"This year we are anticipating that over 500,000 meals will be served during Winterlicious and Summerlicious, putting $24 million directly into the city's restaurant industry," said Mayor Ford. "The 'Licious events are fantastic, with most restaurants seeing nearly a 30 per cent increase in customers and revenue."

There is a near universal agreement (95 per cent) among restaurants that 'Licious is a worthwhile event for the city. They are happy with the program, with nearly all of them of them saying that it is an important contributor to their overall business. Almost all of them (96 per cent) would recommend that their colleagues participate. Further, the data shows that customer satisfaction with the program is at an all-time high.

"Diners love 'Licious, with 99 per cent of those surveyed saying it is a valuable service provided by the City," said Councillor Michael Thompson (Ward 37 Scarborough Centre), Chair of the Economic Development Committee. "And 'Licious love extends beyond Toronto: A third of all diners come from across the GTA, with nearly 10 per cent coming from further afar. It's a great booster for our culinary scene and word is getting out!"

The average diner visits at least two restaurants each promotion and nearly 2/3 of all diners have participated in the program for over four years. More than half of diners say they would return to a 'Licious restaurant at other times during the year, and 2/3 of them would recommend the restaurant to friends and family.

The 2013 Winterlicious prix fixe promotion will run from January 25 to February 7. A total of 191 restaurants will offer three-course prix fixe (fixed price) lunch menus priced at $15, $20 and $25, and dinner menus priced at $25, $35 and $45.

Reservations are strongly recommended and can be made directly with the participating dining establishments. The complete list of participating restaurants is available at

New for this year, diners can get up to the minute information on cancellations and open reservations, with restaurants posting their availability on the site daily.

Winterlicious culinary events series The series features 14 one-of-a-kind ticketed culinary experiences featuring diverse cuisine hosted by some of Torontos finest restaurants and venues. Tickets are still available for the following events:

Hal's Kitchen What's Burning? January 31 and February 7, 6:30-10:30 p.m. Mysteriously Yours... Mystery Dinner Theatre 2026 Yonge St., 416-486-7469

Winter Grilling with Executive Chef Rob Rainford January 27 and February 3, 4:30-9:30 p.m. Gossip Restaurant, 50 Prince Edward Island Cres., 416-596-6492

Guilty Pleasures February 2, various times Drake Hotel 1150 Queen St W., 416-531-5042 ext 1

Culinary U Turn February 4 and 5, various times Origin Liberty 171 East Liberty St, Suite 100, 416-649-4567

Since the City launched Winterlicious and Summerlicious in 2003, participating restaurants have served more than 3.7 million meals as part of the program and generated more than $166 million in economic activity.

Toronto is Canada's largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.7 million people. Toronto's government is dedicated to delivering customer service excellence, creating a transparent and accountable government, reducing the size and cost of government and building a transportation city. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can dial 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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