You can have the best concept, recipes and capacity but if your restaurant can’t deliver a quality customer experience over and over again, people will not come back.
Restaurants need systems to create consistency and certainty. One of the most important method for improving consistency and certainty is your preparation system.
An effective preparation system provides a way for keeping the right amount of prepared product on hand while ensuring proper shelf life and product cycle. Having an effective Daily Preparation system is one of the most important task in kitchen management because it provides the kitchen production line with the necessary amount of product to fill orders during service periods.
A clear Daily Preparation system helps control food cost and make sure your product remains at highest quality and freshness for your recipes.
we’ve identified the 6 fundamental components that make up a great preparation system. They are:
Standardized recipe book: to serve great food you need to have great recipes and Staff that know how to follow them, The Recipe book is the foundation of every kitchen and it provides a method to reach consistency in every preparation.
Organized storage space: prearranged stock room and walk-in cooler make it easier to count product and rotate it.
Everyday count procedure: Make actual, more knowledgeable decisions of what and how much to prepare or order using a daily count and setting filled-to par levels.
Daily preparation posting: Use a preparation board with forms that are easy to fill out. utilize a separate preparation list for each kitchen station.
Portion control tools and standard: Correct measure is vital to expected cost and consistent menu superiority. An additional important part of preparation is to pre-portion every time possible. Pre-portioning of menu items help speed up your service and control the cost.
Product labeling procedure : Proper label with dates and turning round of prepared ingredients support higher quality and food safety. Labels should include product name, date and time prepared , date and time it expire and by whom.
If your restaurant does each all of
these task and have this system in place chances are you have an excellent restaurant.
If this practices are unknown to you, it is not late to start right away get in
touch with us and will start implementing the system.
Valentine’s Day is fast approaching and this year February 14th lands on a Thursday, which gives you the opportunity to turn the night into one of your best sales days of the year. Here are some thoughts you might consider as you plan your Valentine’s Day program:
Promote the Day. Use your customer database
to connect with returning guests and promote the event on social media to
let your target market know about your specials for the evening.
Reorganizing your tables. remove larger tables and
bring in additional two covers.
Prepare your staff. Meet with the FOH team to
coordinate your seating plan and get your service staff on the same page.
Decide earlier if you will focus on table turn by reducing service
sequence times, or ticket averages by accentuating appetizers and
desserts. Speak these targets to your staff so they know what is important
to you and can work together as a team. Don’t adopt that your team will respond
accurately to a high-pressure night event, make sure to highlight the
details more than once, and train as necessary to allow your staff to
handle the extra load.
Consider tweaking or designing a
special menu. To
ensure that the kitchen runs as smoothly as possible, consider provisionally
freezing menu items that require extra prep, or are challenging to make.
Focus on changing the menu not only to select items with high gross profit
margins but also to balance the capacity between each of your kitchen
stations. Many managers move to a fixed price menu with upsell/upgrade
options to satisfy guests’ desires to dine up for the occasion.
Create the WOW element. Consider informing your waiters
to deliver dinner mints, a hand-written card, or small gift with the
presentation of the bill. Some restaurants are delivering fresh, misted
roses to each table, or heart-shaped balloons…get creative
Set aside some time to create a Valentine’s Day program for
your restaurant and get your staff updated with the plan to prepare for a busy
and very profitable evening. Every minute you devote planning in advance will
be compensated as you improve your guest experience for this exceptional event,
and ultimately, your bottom line.
Use this opportunity also to build customer loyalty, attract new guests and
have a more profitable February!
Unless you have a chef as
famous as Gordon Ramsey or Mario Batali, you need to constantly produce innovative
ideas to bring new customer to your restaurant. Advertising alone does not help
much cause there are millions of restaurants popping up. Being in the Food and
Beverage industry all my working life, I am always searching for new ways of
promoting my product and services. Some might not be possible to your
restaurant or business. But some have worked for me.
Can we take just a moment to talk about
this term “Mystic Marketing”?
Based on some
definitions, “Mystic” can seem to be something that mystifies, confounds, and
In many cases,
marketing campaigns which have an amazing impact relate to ordinary things. After
all food service is a simple necessity each of us takes part in several times a
day. People eat to sustain their lives. Customers choose where to eat because
of what they believe.
What do customers
believe about your restaurant? Poor reputation and poor customer feelings need
more than “marketing.”
If you are in the
restaurant business, there is more than just a product to sell. Smiles, comfort,
and quality of life are also a part of what you give. Supplying an experience
to remember (or forget?) is what will separate your restaurant from hundreds of
To this end, we
will review some Marketing Tips for Restaurants that defies the classic trends.
None of which are “traditional” since I know you are interested in something new.
Hopefully, you will have the same success that will seem “mystical” as others
This is an
excellent idea when you have a slow month after a busy month.
envelopes that has a 10% or 20% discount on meal, a free dessert or main course
or even a BHD10 gift certificate. You can put in a lucky draw bowl and let the
guest (who dines a certain amount) pick one. The vouchers are valid for the
next month (the slow month). If you are running a Chinese restaurant, you can
put the vouchers in angpow (red packets) envelope and distribute them during
the Chinese New Year period. The guest can claim their prize next month. This
will then increase your clientele on a slow month.
and pass to your staff. Have them sign on the back of the vouchers. Let them
distribute the vouchers to any one they want. The vouchers can be discount for
purchase for a meal. Give a prize to the staff that has the most vouchers
coming back to the restaurant. This makes the staff feel important and if he/
she wants to win a prize he needs to give to people that he/she knows will come
have some method of capturing email addresses
Have a monthly give away of
something fun / popular such as an iPhone.
Have the staff talk it up and get
email addresses so the customers can be notified if they win
Be sure to have opt-in entry forms
available and getting signatures is even better
Check to be sure customers have
signed, giving permission to contact them by email
Team up with one or more other
businesses to offer a bigger prize to share costs and email addresses on the
A common trend is to offer a free
product item for email address.
Fish bowls are traditional, but
they work. (have a daily drawing for a smaller prize)
Use any of the other tips to focus
on gathering email addresses.
Coloring contests, writing
contests, any kind of drawing attracts attention.
with your customers
with your customers. It can be either via a newsletter, a letter written to
them personally or paying them a visit. This is the reason you see famous
brands like Coca Cola, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Colgate spending millions of
dollars for advertising even though most people know these brands. Even a kid
knows who Colonel Sanders is. By regularly staying connected, your customers
will feel like they are an important part of your establishment and this will
encourage them to return far more often. There are a few key things to remember
when creating a newsletter. Firstly, you will have to do it on a regularly
basis but do not do it every two weeks then this will be a junk mail. A monthly
newsletter is more than enough. Keep your content interesting and add in exclusive
offers here and there. As for me apart from printing flyers and putting on cars
and in mailboxes, I sent personally signed letters highlighting our specials to
our regulars. This is what I have learnt recently from a marketing article which
says to take care of the 20 percent that give us 80 percent of your business.
The 80/20 rule. But you must remember to continuously add more names to your
list. Reason being people might shift or get transferred out. So, you will
constantly have a new list. Each letter is signed by name of the regular
instead of Dear Sir. So, they will feel that I am writing to them personally.
As my list is getting bigger, I will be buying a stamp with my signature on it
so as I can sign more letters. Bahrain is known for its diversity and multicultural
community, you will find a variety of festivals here. I visit our regulars
bringing some festive goodies to say hi and thank them for their business. When
I visit the westerner’s regulars during the festive season, I bring stolen bread
or chocolate. For the Muslim regulars, I visit them during the Eid al Fitr
bringing halwa and the Indian regulars bringing Indian sweets. This makes our
regulars feel important and we are their first choice when they need a place to
dine. You do not have to go on the day of the festival, I do it about a week
before the holidays.
That’s all for
today, give a try to the tips above or start some of the action and let me know
how you customer reacted, share your thought. To the next article.
The steward is a significant and
integral part of a well run and organized kitchen. Dishwashing is often the
lowest paid, most criticised and mocked position in the kitchen, but undeniably
important to basic running. The steward is mistreated by cooks and service
staff alike, given the dirtiest jobs and the longest hours and is expected to
show up with complaint.
The wisest chefs and owners treat their
stewards with kid gloves, giving them the choicest titbits and decent pay.
Nothing will bring a kitchen to a relentless halt faster than a busy restaurant
where the steward has gotten fed up and walked out or not shown up for work
because he was working for slave wages and has been neglected.
The Chef, the cooks and sometimes the
service staff and owners are then left trying to play catch-up with the dishes
and pots and pans along their own jobs. It creates an atmosphere of animosity.
“It’s not MY job”- and when a kitchen only has a certain quantity of
sauté pans and the cooks have to wash them as they use them on a busy night, it
slows everything down. This effect the food getting cooked, as well as it being
served and presented in a timely manner to the customer.
Treat your steward well and you will
avoid having to deal with the angry chef griping that he was there until 2:00
am mopping the floor because there was no steward to do it for him.
Treat your steward as the integral part
of a well run and organized kitchen that they deserve to be and your operation
will run like the well oiled machine it is supposed to.
Unique Selling Point (USP). Having a unique selling point
(USP) is crucial to your business’s success.
Ideally you should try and distinguish your food truck from the competition
by providing a menu that customers can only get from you. Even if you are in a market with several
similar mobile food vendors or restaurants you can still distinguish yourself
from the competition through your product and the service you provide your
customers. Find more info on USP here and how to work on them.
Competitive Advantage. Proving that your food truck
is better than your competitors is crucial; you need to determine why your menu
or service will beat the competition.
The main ways to beat the competition:
Price – where will your prices fall?
Convenience – are your planned parking locations
close to your target market?
Quality – are your ingredients high grade, sourced
locally or organic? Is your service faster or more efficient?
Market Analysis. You need to prove in this section
that a market exists or will exist for your food truck’s menu items. Some
market research is essential here. Get the help of consultant to determine your
Google – search engines contain lots of useful
information but be prepared to spend a long time looking for what you need.
Libraries – most local libraries contain trade
journals and local information you may find useful.
Social Networks – Use a service to conduct surveys
via email as well as social networks (Facebook, Quora, Twitter) to find out
what people think of your idea. A couple well written tweets in peak hours may
generate valuable feedback.
Technical & Operational Requirements. In this
section you need to cover the basic requirements your truck will need to
operate (licenses, commercial kitchen space, and parking). It’s always best to
plan the first year in detail, and then look at the next two years on a summary
Financial Information. Making profit is the most
important area to use to determine if your concept is feasible. Be very
conservative with your estimates in this section.
You will need to determine:
Revenue expectations for
Ongoing expenses for first
Cash Flow for first year
If you are finding it difficult to plan revenue and expenses,
you should speak with a consultant familiar with the food service industry to
The Bottom Line
When you start planning out your food truck and before you
invest too much time and money it is very important for you determine if your
food truck concept is feasible. Not only
with this will speed up the process of knowing to start over or to proceed with
your plan, it will also provide you with most of the information needed to
complete your business plan.
Is your food truck concept feasible? Do you have any
additional advice on this topic? Share your thoughts in the comment section or
on social media.
More often than not, fixing a restaurant takes intense focus, hard work, and a well-thought out strategy. Culinaire and beyond, we are motivated to bring this expertise near our customer to support restaurants of all types and sizes, in markets across the country and around the GCC – for many of Bahrain largest restaurant brands, as well as hundreds of independents.Our array of services and approaches can be found on our website (www.culinaireandbeyond.com) or you can get in touch with us today for a free consultation.
Make no blunder about it, the distinction between a restaurant dream and a restaurant drama is being able to profit and make a living from your hard work. You can keep criticizing the economy, or you can keep pointing your finger at your team and the industry while hoping that something will change; OR, you can call us to start your improvement plan that will help your turnaround restaurant situation, reduce cost and improve profit margin.
Culinaire and Beyond will help you get the results you want and need in a fraction of the time of other consultants.
Among some of the things that Culinaire and beyond can show you are the following:
• How to Assess your restaurant situation • How to Define your restaurant strengths and weaknesses • How to Design a turnaround and profit development strategy plan • How to Increase your turnover and profits fast for the Long-run • How to Use suppliers, products, to help you succeed • How to Create a better Menu and determine the correct pricing so you make profit • How to Determine your labor and food cost Objectives • How to Design better operational processes to improve revenue & margins • How to Fix cash flow issues, shortage and realize better Cash management • How to Hire, train, reduce turnover staff and retain best teams • How to Design and Implement Rewarding Marketing Campaigns • How to Build a culture around achievements and yield • How to Reduce Costs and Get Rid of Dead burden as fast as possible • And, much more . . .