Hi Everyone, can you help me write a quest request

Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by pvchina, Dec 3, 2012.

  1. pvchina


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    I own and operate a small Italian restaurant, with out reservations my kitchen can become backed up so we stager our res, when we have big tables with everyone ordering different things it can also back me up.  Is there a nice way to ask large tables to only order a few items.  Like maybe a choice of 4 per table.  Many thanks. pvchina
  2. djoko verona

    djoko verona

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    Professional Chef
    Before I took over the kitchen in the hotel where I am working now it was only one dish per night ... The head chef was 72 y and tired of working full menu .. So the customer will come only if they like what is n the menu for tonight ...what is bad idea for me ..

    Try to hire so more stuff and make daily preps
    Change the menu items depends on the equipment what you have in the kitchen
    If its a small restaurant 4-5 appetizers and 7-8 main dishes should work perfectly

    Good luck

    P.s don't forget that the customers are paying for the food...so they want to have right to choose
    What to eat tonight

    Bon apetit
  3. chefbuba


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    Retired Chef
    How many is a big table?  You are running a restaurant, just because I come in with 7 of my friends without a reservation, you are not going to give me a limited offering, if you did, it would be the last time you see me in your place.  Bad for business.


    I also run a small kitchen, when it's busy I feel like a one legged man in an ass kicking contest,  people have to wait.

    I always feel that they are getting pissed off, but they come back time after time.

    If the food is good, people will wait.
  4. flipflopgirl


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    Retired Hospitality
    My hands down favorite place to go for a relaxing dinner has a prix fixe meal (can change every few days or nites, depending on what they can find that looks the best)  and never has an empty table.

    You can get a wine pairing for an additional charge.

    I have noticed (on tv) most of the sit down with menu chain places are doing the same thing (well, sorta the same ;-), only they have a share the appetizer, choose two entrees and share dessert for a set price.

    You didn't say how many covers you need to turn every nite, but maybe you could do something between the two without loosing business.

    Maybe a trial of the second one, only have everyone select an appitizer, entree and dessert with a special coffee thrown in.....with four to five choices in each category...and offer to EVERY table.

    You could place this "special" menu on a card inside your regular one.

    I can only see disaster looming if you start selecting the large parties and limiting their choices.


    * of course the short menu would be chosen from your main...so the mise would remain the same.
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2012
  5. arugula


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    You could try doing family style menu for your larger tables. Give them the option of a la carte or the family meals. Make your family meal option affordable to where your still hitting you numbers.and at the same time on the family menu only list the things you know your kitchen can tackle. Maybe large multiple bowls of fresh bread, fett alfredo or penne bolo, veal parms, garden salad and ceaser. What ever is simple and tasty. With as many or as few courses. And as much or as little food as they want. Also a nice touch is having this be a watresses only table. That way the people dinning feel there waitress or waiter cares about them because she isn't backed up having to look after other things. Which usually leads to a better tip for that staff member and your costumers coming back.
  6. recky


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    I have the same problem at my place. When there are feeding frenzies where everybody orders at the same time, people will just have to wait. I always offer a small free starter, e.g. bread with a white bean creme or bruschetta (which the waitress can do while I'm manically busy), and we try to time this starter so that people wait a little, get their starter, and then wait a little again.

    There's only two options in such a scenario: either the food quality deteriorates because the chef doesn't take the time required to cook and plate the dishes properly, or there is a longer wait. I'm sure customers will opt for the latter.

    When it comes to bookings of more than 14 or 15, however, I will talk to the caller or visitor about the fact that our kitchen is simply too small to serve that many people à la carte. I will give them a choice of 4 mains (e.g. by email), often compiled specifically for them (mainly from the regular mise, but not necessarily), strategically divided between hob, oven, grill and saladiere. They always seem to be happy about this, as they feel they get something "special".

    It's all politics, really. Of course, if the shop is busting at its seams without bookings, there ain't much you can do...