Your menu is what you sell and how you make your money.

Boeing builds and sells jets. Crate and Barrel sells furnishings and home goods. Samsung makes and sells TVs, appliances and processing chips. Each of them invests a large fortune to ensure they sell the best stuff in their respective markets. All of the design, management and site selection expertise in the world will not help you if you don’t put food and drinks on your menu that people prefer…and are willing to pay for. Sure, sometimes a great location can offer you some cushion but that won’t stop the complaints from rifling through online review sites, limiting your profit potential and expansion possibilities. Design, management and a good location are indeed critical, but the most important thing you can do for your business is create menus and assortments that people want to shop. Our chefs, mixologists and gourmet retail experts are ready to help you launch menus that get noticed, win new customers…and keep them.

craft cocktails

The days of bars slinging sloppy free-pours and hawking pre-mixed, worse-than-well brand batch cocktails (think Margaritas as On the Border) are, happily, coming to an end. To compete, at a minimum, you need a beverage program that features fresh squeezed juices, house-made mixers, and quality liquors. If you’ve worked hard to build a following for your food and service, but your bar program is not up to snuff, we can help you turn your bar into the profit center you imagined it would be. Make your bar the local favorite, while complimenting and enhancing your food offering. All of this while generating 76% to 82% margin.

Two cocktails sitting on a bar

lunch | dinner

Whether one all-day menu or two menus separated by an item change, Lunch and Dinner need to be developed first to consider what your customers need THEN to what you’re capable of delivering (equipment, facility, staff, management, and competition). To satisfy your audience, some menus need to capture the latest trends in cooking methods, ingredients or region of origin. Others need to be more traditional, requiring familiar foods to be prepared perfectly (nothing like a fresh, bright, crisp, chilled shrimp cocktail). We can work with your chef to create new items, reimagine your existing items or set out to create something completely new to train to a new staff. Regardless of whether your service is fast casual or full, never forget that your food menu must thrill your customers, which can never be left to chance.

bread | buns | bagels

The secret to great bread and great profit is to make your bread in house. Fresh breads take advantage of relatively inexpensive ingredients, but by the time you buy it wholesale, much of the profit has been surrendered to your bread vendors. A $12 gourmet burger with a good outsourced bun will yield about a 68% margin. But that same burger with a GREAT bun, made in house, will yield a 73% margin. And if you weave in some other scratch baking the additional profit across your other items will far outpace the labor cost incurred.  Most important, your burger will simply be better, which is really the point.  We can create custom breads for your restaurant – including bagels, burger/hot dog buns, ciabatta, scacciata, pain au lait, sourdough, etc. – then teach your staff how to make it, using minimal equipment in minimal space.

gourmet market | grab-n-go

If you are (or are looking to create) a gourmet market, coffee shop, convenience store, or hotel amenity, we can help you rationalize your assortment to minimize labor and maximize profit. Stand-alone markets can be heavy on labor cost if not carefully conceived, and they usually forgo the profitability afforded by scratch cooking. Your items must consider sourcing and volume buys. Inventory management requires careful attention and organization. Merchandising must tell your customers a story and instigate impulse buying beyond sustenance shopping. Will you benefit by offering flowers? Is your operation capable of adding prepared grab-n-go? Are gift chocolates appropriate or retro candies…or both? We can help you create a market section for your restaurant or hotel lobby or create a hybrid retail and home-meal-replacement gourmet market. We can even help you dream it up. You supply the gumption.