The data start in 1880 and run through 2013. Based on my visual reading of the chart, discussion of Chinese restaurants appears to have peaked in the 1940s (!). German restaurants are the biggest loser over time, with plunges during each of the two World Wars; French falls more steadily. American and Japanese go up slowly but consistently. The big winner: Italian restaurants go up by far the most in discussions, starting in about 1940, and never stop rising.
The Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune show broadly similar patterns, though the absolute level of discussion for Mexican is much higher in Los Angeles. For the Western world at least, Italian cuisine is the major winner from globalization.
It is in the 1890s by the way that restaurants are discussed more often in The New York Tribune/Herald than are saloons.
That is all from Krishnendu Ray, The Ethnic Restaurateur, which is intermittently quite interesting. Here is the Google Books page.
Originally posted on Marginal Revolution – click to see comments and suggestions.