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Casual dining goes back to the bar

Casual-dining chains, many of which originated in the fern bar era of the late-'60s and '70s, are placing a renewed emphasis on their higher-margin bar business as dining-room traffic and food sales continue to slide.

This week, P.F. Chang’s China Bistro unveiled a new happy hour promotion in 27 states that offers drinks between $3 and $6 between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. In November, Ruby Tuesday completed a revamped beverage and bar program, including signature cocktails and

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