Stocks Darden Restaurants Inc

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    Grab the crayons and the kids' menus, families are dining out again. Restaurant visits from families or parties with children this past summer rose after three years of declining traffic, according to market researcher NPD Group.

  • Longhorn Restaurant

    Darden Restaurants, the operator of LongHorn Steakhouse, Olive Garden and Red Lobster, has never been one to look for a short-term pop from using discounts to lure diners into its restaurants, but that strategy can sometimes be tough for investors to swallow. As consumers begin dining out more, Darden's competitors have been easing off the discounts, and they've been seeing a big boost in their average check. This means it's not so easy for Dardent to outshine its rivals, and Darden's shares are taking a hit as a result. Chairman and CEO Clarence Otis defends the company's peformance in the latest quarter.