Labridge's Country Inn/B&B Chef Search

Joined Oct 6, 2001
I separated this out from the Hotel Cook thread because I thought it was a good topic, and ok, near and dear to my heart, and there are several aspirings here on the board.

If you want a partner who is willing to take a stake in the Restaurant - they need to know what they are committing to -- is it just the restaurant or the Inn and the Restaurant combination? Inns actually have a pretty good success rate, so that could help out in bargaining. The downside -- Inns/B&Bs have a high burnout factor -- 7 years is pretty standard. I think Inns with a restaurant are 5. You may know better -- I can't put my hands on the industry study right now -- our own construction has got my office a little discombobulated - or however you spell it!! (If you haven't seen one, it's pretty interesting!)

If breakfast is a key part of the restaurant (and I'm going to treat it as if it were)

In the quest for a partner: I think the mystery basket concept is a good idea, BUT -- I think you need to not just concentrate on dinner. We all know how to deal with a dinner mystery basket and if you are working with a new grad, we've been trained how to work within those parameters. I'd work with a breakfast/brunch oriented basket. Ask for a sample breakfast/brunch menu. Those tend to be the concepts that scare many people. Most folks have not had to come up with breakfast dishes or many breakfast dishes. Or maybe that brings up the next round of questions.

Are you a B&B/Inn with a wonderful restaurant as an amenity that is also a draw to the public; will you tend to maybe be open more seasonally as traffic to Boone changes?

Will you offer "standard" restaurant type breakfasts? multiple courses to B&B guests? will breakfast offerings change daily? have daily specials so that Mr. Green, guest lecturer at ASU doesn't have to eat the same thing each morning? will there be options on there so that special diets can be accommodated? -- and believe me -- guests will ask and base a decision on whether to stay on breakfast -- many of our guests stay because I will accomodate the Vegan, the Atkins, Pritkins, Weight Watchers name it! One association board I am on many of the complaints we hear about inns is that special needs are not accommodated.

Is your B&B open to children of all ages or is it age restricted? Is your restaurant open to the public for breakfast? If it is how will you handle those people who did not want to interact with children in a public setting? not worry about it or offer breakfast in the rooms?

Will you offer room service breakfasts? A lot of places don't pull it off successfully -- can your chef come up with successful alternatives that can hold and be transportable -- and better still still be good because Mr. C is still in the shower.... even though he wanted breakfast at 8:30 sharp . Still a consideration. It makes an impact that stays.

You've said that you won't be full all the time -- can those breakfast dishes be made to utilize the same items from dinner to keep food costs in control....Using left over croissants from breakfast to make a light and flaky bread pudding (sounds like an oxymoron I know) Cashion's "Eat" in DC's Adam's Morgan makes the absolute best!

Dinners and the Restaurant are important but don't neglect the breakfast concept in the quest. The TTIA (Travel & Tourism Industry Association) believes that the B&B industry is well poised for travel in the upcoming months. People are looking for smaller, more intimate settings. They want to be pampered. Now - I know I tend to get the foodies - but breakfast is a primary factor in why people choose the place they choose.

Not that I have any strong feeling about this subject or anything...
Good luck-lynne
Joined Jul 2, 2001
Great post Lynne, it had alot of valid points and since he is starting a B & B breakfast would be a large part of what they do it would make since to gear the test towards that. As in any of our positions testing and retesting is a large part of our program. We invest large sums of money each yr. to make sure we train our employyees to be the best they can be.
And I like the use of left-over idea and may try to incorparate it into our testing program somehow.

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