This paper investigates the paradox of authenticity versus standardisation. It examines the features that constitute restaurant authenticity and determines whether these can be standardised within an alliance of top restaurants to reap the benefits of commonalities among the restaurants. We determine the features of authenticity by examining the literature, by interviewing owners and managers of alliance restaurants, and by means of a consumer survey. The results show several discrepancies. Combining these three data sources allowed us to distinguish between essential and peripheral features of authenticity. This distinction can help to define a standard for restaurant authenticity, specifying minimum levels for essential features of authenticity.