Do you own or manage a restaurant? There’s a lot to keep track of while attempting to make it a smash hit. You need to keep supplies in stock, keep your staff happy, keep your customers happier, design an authentic and memorable dining experience to generate return custom and market, and promote yourself! Sounds exhausting, right? But ultimately rewarding, because otherwise why would you bother? But one thing that can hold a restaurant back is a bland, boring menu. Unless you’re appealing to a particular demographic (that enjoys two for one deals) then you may need to look at how to curry some flavour and spice up your menu. Let’s unpack this a bit more.
Get Your Supplier Right
In order to create a menu that pops you need great hospitality supplies in Melbourne. You’re spoiled for choice here, as the hospitality wholesale industry can be cutthroat and competitive. Loyalty sometimes pays, but so does shopping around for a deal. Head out to markets, wholesale conferences and other places where you can find some interesting and new ingredients to rejuvenate your menu. If you’re pushing a particular cuisine you may need to import your goods as well so finding a great importer here is the key to success.
Diners get bored easily, especially foodies. If someone has worked their way through your menu and is getting a bit over it that’s a customer that you may lose to the competition. As a good rule of thumb a menu is good for about six months or so. Any time after that and it runs the risk of becoming stale. But wait, you cry! If I remove a crowd pleaser from my menu then I’ll face ruin. This is not necessarily true, as eateries that innovate and push the envelopes attract rave reviews which, in turn, attract paying customers in droves. But if there is one dish that you feel you’ll regret shelving you can always keep it on the menu, surrounded by some future favourites.
Fresh Blood in the Kitchen
Once you have found a great chef you may hesitate before letting them go, but hear us out on this next spicy tip. Installing some new staff in the kitchen may mean that your business improves as they bring fresh ideas and their experience from previous jobs to the bear in your restaurant. If you’re absolutely loathe to sack a good chef in order to bring in some new ideas then send them on for further training in the cuisine that you want to push. This way you both retain skilled and loyal staff and your business gets the boost of some new directions.
Cater for all Sorts
This may make some people mutter and grumble but it is 2018 after all and different diets and dietary preferences are a dime a dozen. Vegetarian. Vegan, Keto. Gluten free. FODMAP. The list goes on. While we realise that you absolutely cannot cater for every man and their dogs unique dietaries it’s worth having at least two vegetarian dishes on the menu, one vegan and a couple gluten free. Every customer that leaves your restaurant prior to ordering because they can’t eat there is dollars that are falling into someone else’s bank account.
To Stir it All Together
Make sure that you have your hospitality supplier right so you have the ingredients and tools to do the job. Consider a major menu overhaul every six months or so to keep your customers coming back for variety (the spice of life, after all). Get some new kitchen staff with fresh ideas in, or train up your existing crew in new techniques and cuisines. Finally, ensure that you cater for some of the many different dietary preferences that exist these days. Bon appetit!