Start-up entrepreneurs will probably have to do these guides locally. Anne Karle-Zenith of Brooklyn decided to create a local restaurant guide on the Internet. Karle-Zenith, 35, and her husband Lenny Zenith, 39, took $10,000 of savings and launched tasteofbrooklyn.com last October. Karle-Zenith doesn't consider the large online and print dining guides direct competition, because her site focuses exclusively on Brooklyn and its various neighborhoods and is more comprehensive. She admits, however, that "it's difficult to make money from advertising on a content-driven site. You have to have something that goes along with your site that has the potential to generate revenue." She's currently working on a plan to turn tasteofbrooklyn.com into a marketplace guide, complete with personal Web pages for local businesses.
These businesses are only the first course in a wide-open market. So who wants to be a restaurateur?