Sunday, August 12, 2012

The Proper Layout For Your New Restaurant Menu

The design of a menu speaks volumes to customers. It's the first step in placing orders. So the menu should make the right impression to diners. Some of the most enticing menus are designed with deliberate simplicity. This doesn't mean ignoring understated elegance. Coordinate the menu design with the menu selections and ambiance of the dining facility. The size of the menu should be manageable for customers and the typography should be easy to read. Choose contrasting type colors and font styles that afford easy reading. The layout of the menu should follow a specific ordering pattern: Beverages, appetizers, salads, soups, sides and entrees. Allow additional space for daily specials that can be inserted or clipped to the menu.
Keep It Simple
The design of a menu should enhance selections of dishes the restaurant prepares for its clientele. It's important not to overload a menu with too many selections. Customers appreciate fewer menu items than too many choices. However, offering fewer menu selections should also include the highest quality in foods served. A simple menu may be varied based upon the types of ingredients used to create signature dishes. Many salad ingredients can be used in side dishes or entrees. This is also true of fish, meat and poultry ingredients that can be combined as salad ingredients. This is one way to reduce food costs. Another way is to gauge the size of portions. Too often restaurant portion sizes are larger than necessary. When portions are too large, this increases food costs.
Have a Concept
Too often restaurant owners feel the need to throw everything they can possibly stuff into their coolers onto the menu. By trying to please everybody that walks through the door, you end up pushing your customers even further away. Why? Two reasons:
1. As I have said before, the more items on your menu the harder it is to keep the ingredients fresh and this also makes the line much more inefficient.
2. Your customers lose track of what your concept is. You wouldn't enter an Italian restaurant and expect to see fish and chips on the menu. When it does happen customers tend to forget about you when they're in the mood for a nice risotto.
Pick your cuisine and your concept and make sure they work hand-in-hand. You may only have 15-25 items on your menu but your customers will keep returning if they know your restaurant has the best recipe and freshest ingredients in town for that particular cuisine.
A Well-Rounded Menu For A Filling Meal
If there's one key issue to consider, it's insuring customers leave a restaurant with the feeling of value and satisfaction. Use only the freshest ingredients prepared freshly every day to insure value. Meals should be colorful and tasty from drinks to desserts. Review menu selections regularly and make simple changes when needed. Every restaurant offers a specialty dish which is a major attraction. Create a menu based upon this signature specialty dish and build the rest of the menu around it for customer satisfaction.

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