BUSINESS: Could Your Restaurant Patio Be Boosting Your Revenue?
If your cafe, bar or restaurant has an outside seating area, you’re probably just grateful for the extra space… but, is it working as hard as it could be? Here are four questions to ask yourself if you’re serious about maximizing the commercial opportunity offered by your outside space.
DID YOU KNOWS…
Who Do You Got?
The James Beard Award nominees list has been released and it looks like a copy-paste job from last year. 56 of the 110 nominees were repeats from 2018. There were 32 women nominated this year, a few short of last year. Here’s the full list of nominees.
The Most Stressed Countries
Given the economic hardships brought about by the financial crisis, making ends meet has become increasingly difficult in Greece. Unsurprisingly, that has made life incredibly stressful for much of its population and Gallup found that 59% of Greeks are under a lot of stress. The U.S. is also firmly among the world's most stressed countries with 55% of the population responding that they had experienced a lot of stress the day before the research was conducted.
Is Pumpkin Beer to Blame?
Weyerbacher Brewing sold 55% of its majority stake to a private investment firm. It also filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, citing pumpkin beer as the company’s Achilles’s heel. The company’s president and COO said that market saturation of pumpkin beers, but it wasn’t the only reason for the brewery’s downfall.
YOU MAKE ME SICK
Why it matters to you: Avoiding these common health code violations should be a top priority of your restaurant operations.
It’s safe to assume that none of you want to be responsible for a guest falling ill. Unfortunately, with the CDC reporting 128,000 cases of foodborne illness each year, it appears we call have some work to do to improve our hygiene execution. While sometimes it’s externalities that cause illness -- like with recalled ground beef -- you need only review the experience of Chipotle in 2015 to learn how bad execution causes serious problems. That’s why this list of 10 common health code violations by restaurants is particularly relevant to you. All of us can afford a few minutes to be reminded what the various points of exposure you have to combat in your operation.
Some of them are simple -- like the time and temperature issues. The length of time food is outside the food safe zone (between 40 – 140 degrees) is crucial because that is where bacteria can grow. Other aspects of sanitation that are commonly cited by health department officials include how food is stored and issues of cross-contamination. These were both the most cited violations against Chipotle as they navigated their own health violations nightmare. The good news is that after reading this gentle reminder, you can re-dedicated yourself to building the systems that promote their proper execution and avoid your own nightmare of making a guest ill.
[Source: Toast POS]
DAMNED IF YOU DO
Why it matters to you: McDonalds UK straws are paper and people hate them.
Sure, 99% of the world’s scientists agree that climate change is real and that humans have something to do with it. So, you would think a move by McDonald’s in the UK to paper straws would be applauded as good corporate citizenship. Unfortunately for McDonald’s, their paper straws have turned into a soggy fail and that’s not sitting well with the very same guests they thought they were serving by prohibiting plastic straws. Complaints range from, “it melted into my shake” to, “shouldn’t it last more than one or two minutes in the liquid?”
While you can’t blame McDonald’s for trying, you can blame them for failing. A company of that size should have better tested their products and understood their constituency. A little market research would have explained that many people drink their accompanying fast food beverage long after they finish their meal. As a result of McDonald’s fail here, guests will be less accepting of a paper straw solution and might even favor their own convenience by continuing to demand plastic straws.
If you have any doubt that plastic straws are contributing mightily to the pollution we are releasing on land and sea, just look at this image for clarification. Or read this brief article on the impacts of plastics on sea life throughout the ocean. BTW, that’s same sea life we depend on for sourcing food for our menus. You can dismiss this as more propaganda against individual rights or conveniences, but we maintain that it’s our responsibility in the restaurant industry to be good stewards of our environment -- and it appears our business might even depend on it.