The number one reason for diners to return to a restaurant is obviously for the food! But with shelter in place, many restaurants are only offering a slimmed down version of what's usually on the menu. Why not take some time to revisit your restaurant’s regular menu now so when the customers are ready to dine in again, you will be ready too!
The first thing to understand is how you present your menu is as important as what’s on it. Digital menus on tablets have been a trend in recent years, especially for restaurants where diners can order small dishes such as tapas, sushi and dim sum. They can add items by themselves anytime during the meal. Many are also equipped with credit card readers or contactless payment methods so everything is done right at the table. However, remember to sanitize the tablet between table turnovers or sometimes even during the meal to keep the tablet clean.
A popular menu display for casual eateries are digital menu boards. They are especially practical for restaurants with multiple outlets to ensure that the brand is presented consistently. Digital signage software is flexible so weekly specials and menu changes can be conveniently uploaded. Most importantly, digital menu boards are a great way to keep your customers entertained while waiting for their turn.
When it’s time to decide on what dishes will be on your restaurant’s menu, consider buying from local food producers. From fruits and vegetables, poultry, seafood or even beer, sourcing from local businesses is a great way to promote your brand. What’s more, buying locally supports foodservice providers in your community and can give a boost to the local economy.
It might be a good idea to encourage your chef to develop new dishes but don’t forget to calculate the food cost of each dish. Design a menu with ingredients which are adaptable to different recipes to minimize food spoilage. Have fun with new ideas but remember to keep the staple favorites on your menu so your regular customers still feel welcomed.