Category Archives: Quick Tips

No longer accepting new clients

O’Dell Restaurant Consulting has stopped accepting new clients as of July 12th 2016. The success of my other company, Friend That Cooks Personal Chefs, means that it requires 100% of my time moving forward. Existing clients with retainers will still be able to use their prepaid time.

I am going to leave this blog up as a resource since it gets 400+ views a day and because my articles are referenced on dozens of other sites, books and magazines. Our primary website will be coming down.

I welcome you to comment on articles and ask questions if you like. I will still monitor the blog and interact as needed.

Thank you for your support and interest in what I have had to say over the years as a food service consultant, and good luck to all of you.

Brandon O’Dell

O’Dell Restaurant Consulting

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Reading suggestion – The Chef's Commandments

I just finished reading my pre-publication, review copy of The Chef’s Commandments: Maximize your kitchen’s profitability by J.A. Mendez from Pineapple Publications. Good read.

To be honest, I have to tell you that I was interviewed for this book, and the publisher used some of my blogs and articles for content, so I may be biased. Either way, I suggest picking up a copy of The Chef’s Commandments for yourself. The author, Antonio, has done a great job of packing a lot of useful information about operating a successful restaurant into a 138-page book that only takes a few hours to read.

 Pre-order your copy here.

Antonio’s book delves into food cost control, marketing, menu creation, safety, sanitation and even managing employees. While it isn’t an “in-depth” study of any one of these topics, it does a lot to focus you in the right direction, so you know what areas of your restaurant or food service you should be looking at to obtain more profit.

 At $15.95, this book is a steal.

 Chefs Commandments cover

 

I almost forgot. This book is the first of a series, so keep your eyes out for the next installment in The Chef’s Commandments: Happy Cooks, Happy Customers – A chef’s guide to employee management.

Quick tips – Update your menu often

You can greatly improve your cash flow by adopting a policy of smaller, more frequent price increases instead of waiting for a year or longer before raising prices a larger increment.

Use this simple example to catch my drift:

Chicken tenders $5.99 from January 2008 – January 2009
Price raised to $6.99 after January 2009
4000 orders of chicken tender sold during whole year
$23,960 in sales for year

Chicken tenders $5.99 from January 2008 – March 2008
Chicken tenders $6.29 from April 2008 – July 2008
Chicken tenders $6.49 from August 2008 – October 2008
Chicken tenders $6.79 from November 2008 – January 2009
Price raised to $6.99 after January 2009
4000 order chicken tender sold during whole year, 1000 order per quarter
$25,569 in sales for year

By not waiting to raise the price, you gain an additional $1,609 in profit for the year off one menu item. You also help mask the price increase by doing it incrementally. Your customers are much less likely to notice $.20-$.25 increases compare to a $1 increase.

O’Dell Restaurant Consulting Weblog moves to new address!

Hello everyone. Thank you for tuning in to the web log for O’Dell Restaurant Consulting. We have decided to move our blog from WordPress to our own web host! Please make note of the new address. You can follow links on the top right of the page to subscribe to this new address.

http://blog.bodellconsulting.com

We hope to see you at our new address. All new content will be coming to that address, and not to this one, so don’t miss out! Please join us there.

Sincerely,

Brandon O’Dell

Quick Tips – Keep your menu simple

Large menus have a lot of downfalls. Large menus require excessive prep, cause long ticket times, are hard to educate service staff on, need too much storage space, and generally drive down the profitability of your restaurant. Keep your menu as small as you can, focused on your concept, and easy to produce.

Quick Tips – Use color on your menu design

A great way to make your menu stand out, and to draw people to certain items, is through the use of color. When you add color to your menu, use the color scheme you’ve chosen for your restaurant. Use other colors to highlight, surround, or shade menu items you want people to notice. Color icons are a great way to tell more about a menu item, whether it’s spicy, a customer favorite, or a great value.

Quick Tips – Get some signature menu items

A good way to make your food stand out, and to communicate what your food is all about is by creating a signature item in each of your menu categories. These items should be your highest gross profit earners, and the centerpieces of your direct marketing efforts. They help define you and your restaurant. You don’t need “a bunch” of signature items either. The more items you have that claim to be “special” or “signature”, the less special each of them are. Save your other great, creative ideas for your daily or weekly features.

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