Customers at BJ's Restaurants are ordering more appetizers and drinks, Dunkin' Donuts patrons are picking pricier sandwiches, and full-service restaurants are seeing more traffic, as consumers tired of recession-era spending cuts start to splurge again. "This has been a long, drawn-out recovery, and for most people alive today, it’s the longest they’ve had to conserve financially ... As their prospects improve, some pent-up demand is being released," economist Russell Price said.

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