The Zagat Survey was established by Tim and Nina Zagat in 1979 as a way to collect and correlate the ratings of restaurants by diners for their first guide, covering New York City.

At its height, in 2005, the Zagat Survey included 70 cities, with reviews based on the input of 250,000 individuals with the guides reporting on and rating restaurants, hotels, nightlife, shopping, zoos, music, movies, theaters, golf courses, and airlines.

The guides are sold in book form, and were formerly only available as a paid subscription on the Zagat website.

As part of its more than $150 million acquisition by Google in September 2011, Zagat's offering of reviews and ratings became a part of Google's Geo and Commerce group, eventually to be tightly integrated into Google's services.

Google relaunched Zagat's website on July 29, 2013, with an improved interface, but cut down the site from 30 cities to nine. They released a searchable database of reviews from the other 21 cities in the following days while they worked on expanding to include more cities in the new site.

Regardless, Google's acquisition and integration of Zagat provided it with a strong brand in local restaurant recommendations and ample content for location-based searches. As of 2019, the Zagat book is now in print for 2020.

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