Photo source: Metro ServiceDiners are often delighted at the caliber of food and service at independently owned eateries. ■ Metro service Dining out is a great way to celebrate life’s milestones or simply reconnect with friends and loved ones. Research firm NPD Group found that, by the end of 2015, restaurant visits by consumers increased by 700 million compared to just five years prior. While chain restaurants invest heavily in advertising, independently owned restaurants do not have those same resources. Multi-unit chains also have more pull with suppliers and might be able to negotiate better deals, or can spread operational costs across various locations. Too often diners are not aware of

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