The restaurant has become one of the most potent agents of change in altering the character of American dining. Virtually all of the new cuisines, cooking styles, and foods are first entered the American diet in restaurant settings. Mass production of food made it possible for restaurant operators to confidently make long-range plans regarding their cuisine and printed menus. Traditionally restaurants have been classified by the foods that they serve—Italian, seafood, steak—in the belief that the food served was the basis of a consumer decision process. Soul food has more to do with the dining experience than with the quality of the food. Many soul-food locations serve marginal food but evoke memories by creating or recreating images. The rise of body-food restaurants was paralleled by the rise of soul-food emporiums, although their numbers were quite limited until the rapid expansion of the middle class after World War II.