Ethnic restaurants thrive in U.S.

A steady expansion of ethnic and international restaurants have put momos (Himalayan dumplings), Hawaiian poke (raw fish) bowls, and wraps on laffa (Mediterranean flatbread) onto U.S. meal plates, thus challenging the entrenched Italian, French and Mexican offerings.

Ethnic foods have become less intimidating and more approachable to consumers, notes Jennifer Watson, senior managing director of Newmark Knight Frank’s national retail group. “Consumer palates are becoming more sophisticated, and there is also more diversity in the country,” she said.