Menu strategies that save you $$$

 In Bar & Restaurant Operations

There is no way around it: Every bar/restaurant owner is looking for ways to cut costs. No matter how good your bottom line is looking at a particular moment, you are still loath to feel like money is being wasted.

An area that owners and managers neglect when it comes to saving a few bucks is the menu. Without dramatically impacting the quality of your offerings, there are a number of ways to trim fat (pun intended) though the choices you make.

One problem we consistently see in bars/restaurants is an excess of items. Do you really need to have 80 entrees? Is your sixth flavor of jalapeño pepper an absolute must?

In most cases offering 15 or 20 dishes that you have a good track record with will be far more beneficial, particularly if they are items that represent what your kitchen does well. In short, this is the not the area to be a “jack of all trades, master of none.”

Along the same lines, analyze your point of sale records and take a look at items that hardly ever sell. See if anything jumps out at you as an easy cut.

Make sure you’re keeping an eye on common ingredients. There is no point in having a somewhat obscure dish with ingredients you don’t use elsewhere unless it’s a signature item.

Also make sure you’re training your staff that leftovers don’t always have to become a brand new special the following day. There is no reason you can’t take that unused inventory and repurpose one of your highest profit entrees. Reducing inventory will go a long way to freeing up cash in your budget.

Being the successful businessperson you are, we’re sure you look everywhere to make sure there is no budget excess. Just make sure to make a particularly close inspection of your menu in the process, and get rid of all those extra Jalapeño dishes!

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