LOS ANGELES — California Pizza Kitchen, Inc. was recently named the "#1 Most Recommended Casual Dining Chain" restaurant in a newly created Recommendation Index research study, introduced by marketing firms Zocalo Group and M/A/R/C Research. California Pizza Kitchen is a leading casual dining chain featuring a line of hearth-baked pizzas and a broad selection of pastas, salads, appetizers, soups, sandwiches and more.

The list was compiled after surveying more than 1,000 frequent casual dining customers in the U.S. about which brands they most often recommended positively and negatively, and the specific attributes they look for when making their recommendations. Online conversations occurring organically on Twitter, blogs, forums, video sites and other discussion venues were also examined and included in the overall analysis.

"We are honored to be recognized and chosen as the most recommended casual dining brand by consumers in the United States," said Larry Flax and Rick Rosenfield, co-chief executive officers of California Pizza Kitchen.

The company led the Casual Dining Restaurant category with an Index score of 4.57, which represents the number of people positively recommending the brand for every one person with a negative recommendation. The average Index score in the C.D.R. Category is 3.01.