Monthly Archives: March 2010

  • The Benefit of Comment Cards

    It's common knowledge that the economy hurt businesses of all kinds, particularly the restaurant industry. Going out to eat or out for drinks is a luxury that most of us had taken for granted until we became short on money. Some restaurants however, managed to stay afloat during tough economical times. Their key strategy? Stay in touch with the clientele. The easiest way to keep guests coming back (even when money is tight) is by making them happy and letting them know that your management or corporate team is listening. How do you do that? Easy - comment cards. There are a number of things you should be asking your guests when they visit you and once they leave. Guests that have a great time in your restaurant love giving reviews, but guests that had a terrible time love it even more. The goal is to make everyone happy and to get guests to come back. Here are a few things you should be keeping track of on a regular basis.

    Wait Time

    This is absolutely crucial to how well your venue does. Wait time in the valet loop, on the phone for to-go orders, at the host stand, in the bar, and at the table should be minimal. Nothing annoys a hungry guest more than waiting longer than necessary, especially when it's very obvious that it could be prevented. - Questions to ask: Would you like the first available table (smoking or non)? Would you like to sit in the bar area (if seating is first come, first serve)? Would you like your soup/salad out first or with the meal? Are you going to want another glass of ____ with your entrée?

    Greetings

    It's not uncommon that some of your staff won't want to work on a Friday or Saturday night, but their expression and tone shouldn't advertise that. Making sure that your staff understands that guests can read even the smallest gestures will likely make them more aware of their interactions with guests, and they will ultimately make more money for themselves and your venue. - Questions to ask: Is there anything I can get you while you're waiting? Would you like a chair while you wait? Would you like a menu to look at until your table is ready?

    Bar Service

    If you're fortunate enough to have a busy venue, then you're already doing something right. However, making sure that your bar staff works quickly and efficiently will help to guarantee continued business. Guests are easily annoyed if they don't get a drink fast enough or if their bill isn't presented to them before their table is ready. - Questions to ask: Are you going to be having any more beverages at the bar? Were you satisfied with your drink selection? Can I suggest a beverage to go with your meal?

    Cleanliness

    Guests want to dine in a fashion where they feel like they are being taken care, and that doesn't mean they just want quick service. Making sure their dining area is clear of clutter, spot-free, and organized can make their experience more memorable. Just make sure not to neglect other parts of your restaurant, such as the waiting area and restroom. These are the first and last two places that most people see in your venue and you would be surprised at what an impact the cleanliness of these two areas can have on your guests' experience. - Questions to ask: How would you rate the organization and cleanliness of the restaurant? How was the presentation of our venue?

    Manager Presence

    Other than fixing mistakes as soon as they happen, a manager should make an appearance at the table almost immediately and preferably with a great solution. However, managers shouldn't only make themselves available when there's a problem. The more often a good manager communicates with his or her guests, the more likely those guests are to return and give a good review. - Questions to ask: Would you like to let the manager know about your great experience? How often do you dine with us? Would you like for me to have my manager come over with a customer appreciation coupon?

    More questions to consider:

    - How would you rate your...appetizer? Beverage/alcoholic beverage? Salad or soup? Entrée? Dessert? Overall meal? Assistance in selecting menu items? - What was your favorite food item? - How was the overall presentation of the food? - What was your favorite part of your experience? - Would you recommend us to others? - How can we improve our business/service? - Do you plan to return? For more information about restaurant management, foodservice industry tips, or questions about our products please feel free to email us at: info@missionrs.com laurenb@missionrs.com
  • Cocina de las Americas: 2010 Paella Cook-Off

    Paella


    Mission Restaurant Supply is a proud sponsor of Cocina de las Americas: 2010 Paella Cook-off Presented by H-E-B. This event is a charity event and proceeds will go toward scholarships for culinary students at CIA San Antonio.

    What to Look Forward To

    Chefs from all over the country and Latin America will be participating in an "Iron Chef" style competition at the Pearl Brewery on March 14, 2010.

    Guests at the event will get to try the famous Spanish dish of paella, as well as hams and cheeses from Spain, delicious wines, and a number of different tapas that will be made by San Antonio chefs and CIA San Antonio students. Those in attendance will also be able to enjoy live music and entertainment during the event.

    "I'm honored that my friends and fellow chefs from around the country and Latin America will join me in bringing a level of culinary prestige to San Antonio and highlight not only its rich culinary landscape but the CIA's newest campus," said Chef Johnny, executive chef of True Flavors. "...one of my goals has been to develop a culinary event that will benefit aspiring local chefs who face touch social and economic hardships."
    Chef Johnny

    Ticket Sales

    Tickets for the event will be sold online for $40 (21+) and $20 (21 and under). Tickets will also be sold at the door for $50 each.

    Chefs Competing in Cook-Off

    Local chefs
    - Bruce Auden (Auden's Kitchen & Biga on the Banks) - James Sanchez (Acenar) - Jason Dady (Bin 555) - Andrew Weissman (il Sogno) - Josh Cross (Oloroso) - Renee Fernandez (Azuca)

    Other chefs
    - Roberto Santibanez (Truly Mexican, NYC) - Waldy Malouf (Beacon Restaurant, NYC) - Rick Moonen (Mandalay Bay, NV) - Jhojans Priego (Villarica, Veracruz, MX) - Ben Ford (Fords Filling Station, LA) - Jeffery Axell (Grand Hyatt, TX) - Smoky Waters (Taco Cabana, TX) - Brian West (Las Ramblas, TX) - Jeff Balfour (Hotel Valencia, TX)

    Hope to see you there! Come support the culinary community and students of San Antonio!

    What: 2010 Paella Cook-Off Presented by H-E-B
    When: March 14, 2010, 11:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
    Where: Pearl Brewery
    Price: $40 (21+ presale), $20 (21 and under presale), & $50/person at the door

    Directions to the Pearl Brewery here: http://www.pearlbrewery.com/pages/location.html
    More information about CIA San Antonio: http://www.ciachef.edu/sanantonio/
  • Equipment for the Avid Entertainer


    Hosting events at your home is a great deal of fun, but it can also be much more stressful than you imagined. As long as you're prepared with the right kitchen and catering equipment (and perhaps some assistance) you will be able to effortlessly entertain your guests.

    Polar Ware T8971A - Serving Tray, Hammered Stainless Steel Serving Tray

    Make Sure You Have the Basics

    Most of us already have the basic supplies needed to host a party, but there's always something that we seem to forget. It's likely that you already have serving spoons, forks, and platters, but have you ever thought about getting tongs and nicer trays for presentation? Purchasing dressier serving utensils and platters is an inexpensive way to take your party up a notch. Also make sure that you have a blender for frozen drinks (either alcoholic or non-alcoholic) and a crock pot or roaster for preparing slow-cooked, easy meals.

    Sitting Down for a Meal

    Nothing is worse than not having matching dinnerware, flatware or glassware at a dinner party. Purchasing dinnerware for a large gathering can get pricey, but the good thing is that you can reuse your plates and silverware for years to come and you can even sell some of it if you feel like you don't need it anymore. At Mission Restaurant Supply, we have more than ten different color options for our dinnerware and numerous sizes, shapes, and prices. Don't forget to make sure that your glassware is fitted for the occasion as well. Look into purchasing numerous beverage glasses and wine glasses, and maybe consider stocking champagne glasses for special occasions. If you want to save a little money, you can even purchase plastic glasses and plates.

    Thunder Group SLRCF0833GH - Rectangular Chafing Dish

    Keeping It Hot & Fresh

    Guests will usually want another helping of your food, especially if you're a great cook, and they should be welcome to it! Making sure that the food stays hot and fresh can be tricky if you don't have numerous crock pots or oven space. An easy solution to this problem is to provide chafing dishes so that the quality of your food is just as impressive as when it was first prepared. Chafing dishes are extremely easy to use and clean. All you have to do is fill it with the bottom of the dish with warm water, light a chafer candle (or fuel cell) below it, and place your pans of food into the chafing dish.
    Buffet Enhancements Inc. 1BACF35 - Chocolate Fondue Fountain


    If You Insist...

    If you want the best entertainment for your guests, then you definitely need to check out some of these cool items:
    1. Margarita machine: one of the hottest commodities at blow-out bashes. They come in a number of different sizes and they are super easy to clean.
    2. Popcorn machine: these are great for kids or themed parties. Providing a popcorn machine is a simple way to add a little flair to any event.
    3. Chocolate fountain: an incredible addition to special events that adds another little touch of class.

    Did You Know That at Mission Restaurant Supply...?

    1. Serving spoons can either be perforated or non-perforated, plastic or stainless steel.
    2. Platters come in more than 10 different colors and numerous different sizes.
    3. Tongs come in more than 10 different colors and styles.
    For more information on necessary kitchen equipment, quotes, consultation, or design ideas, please don't be afraid to contact us
       

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