I like to use Open Table to make my restaurant reservations when I can. I never get put on hold by a busy host or hostess, it takes mere seconds, I get an e-mail confirmation of my reservation, and I earn money back.

Open Table has recently launched Spotlight, a Groupon-like daily deal site. The site is starting slow with restaurants in New York City and Boston, but more cities will be added.

How does it work? Users sign up to receive e-mail alerts about the deals. When an e-mail with a deal arrives, usually a 50 percent off deal like $25 for $50 worth of food at a specific restaurant, there is a time limit to buy the deal. Often, a certain number of people will have to buy into the deal, and if the number isn’t reached, no one gets the deal.

Spotlight is just getting started, and the deals aren’t daily yet, but if it catches on like Groupon has, it will be a great way to save money at local, independent restaurants. I’ll be keeping my eye out for when they add the Philadelphia region to the service. 

Robin Shreeves ( @rshreeves ) focuses on food from a family perspective from her home base in New Jersey.

Open Table's Spotlight
A Groupon-like daily deal from the restaurant reservation site.