Caine confirmed the ending is real: http://herocomplex.latimes.com/2012/...s-final-scene/
The actor is also quick to dispel any ambiguity about the film’s ending. Asked about the scene in which Alfred spies Bruce Wayne and Anne Hathaway’s Selina Kyle sitting together at a neighboring table in that restaurant — a shot that suggests that Alfred’s wish for Bruce has come true, that his former charge has found a companion to bring him some measure of inner peace and happiness, enabling him to finally leave behind his self-appointed role as Gotham’s unofficial protector — Caine is quite emphatic.
“They were there,” Caine said. “They were real. There was no imagination. They were real and he was with Anne, the cat lady, and I was happy ever after for him as I told him during the picture.”