My associate, Travis Summit, brought my attention to an article in the Huffington Post titled, “The 11 Untold Secrets of Menu Design”. He thought it might be interesting for our customers to read. Travis was right; it is an interesting article as it identifies ‘researched’ observations for planning and identifying food and beverage selections on a printed menu. These observations apparently were made by the Culinary Institute of America, a highly respected institution. I am intrigued by some of these observations, and will see if I can find supporting data for a future newsletter. For now, I will mention the ones that intrigued me, and I support (for a complete list please see the article)
#1: It is probably best not to use a currency designation such as a $.
Most of us are alert for costs, and a currency designation ‘is a cost’; it is a harsh reality. Numbers without a currency designation tend to be benign; we understand their meaning but in a less threatening way.
#3: It is probably best to ‘control’ the number of your offerings.
Too many selections can frustrate a customer as opposed to encouraging careful thought about what they might truly enjoy. Providing a comfortable and enjoyable dining experience should be your restaurant’s priority. Allowing your customer to peruse carefully and thoroughly your offerings and choose one they will truly enjoy adds to a great experience.
#6: Dessert selections should be offered under separate cover…
This observation complements #3; limit your offerings.
Your customers are in your restaurant for a great dinner, not dessert. Dessert should be an afterthought; a complement to the dining experience, and as inferred in the article, offering a separate dessert menu can add to revenue.
These three observations caught my attention. Some of the others identified in the article should also be considered when planning your printed menu presentation.