January 2010 Blog Posts (133)

Top 3 Areas for Reducing Food Costs

This is a follow-up to a series of articles I've been posting on controlling food costs in your restaurant. The focus and time required to manage cost can seem daunting, so this week I just wanted to list a few key areas you can start with and can grow from there. Next week we will be talking about recipe costing.

The Kitchen:

- Reward staff when food costs are met

- Implement a meal plan, which allows your staff to eat at discounted prices to keep them from… Continue

Added by Jim McGinty on January 21, 2010 at 7:14am — No Comments

My Top 5 Jobs Beginning With Number 5

Over the past 3 decades I have had plenty of jobs. Some not so good and others not bad while a few were memorable. It is no coincidence that the jobs I stayed with the longest I liked the most. All except for one I worked with over a year.

I like to think of my career working in dining rooms and bars in similar terms to that of a professional athlete. When you start out you are learning on the fly then you begin taking in all you have learned from others and begin to have some… Continue

Added by Steve Nicolle on January 21, 2010 at 4:59am — 2 Comments

Taking Mental Anchoring Up A Notch

I wrote about this yesterday, and got to thinking that I wanted to take the anchoring idea a step further. During the past decade my company has researched the sales velocity and check averages of thousands of restaurants. This isn't just a sampling, but we have developed a menu matrix for these restaurants, so we've looked at every item they've sold over a 1-3 month period and matrix that with selling price and food cost. And the one thing that is hardest to sell on any menu is the most… Continue

Added by Mark on January 20, 2010 at 11:30am — No Comments

From My Window: Overheard at the Fancy Food Show this week...


Added by Michael Albert on January 20, 2010 at 8:45am — No Comments

Great Start to 2010!

I sure hope your January is going as well as our January. Already, it seems to be just what we intended it to be - a fast start to a great year at FohBoh. It’s year three for us, and we are ready for action. And it seems others are too. It’s a new, fresh year and we feel the energy and excitement in the conversations we have. In the first two weeks of 2010, we already able to announced two major partnerships for FohBoh:

California Restaurant Association selected FohBoh as their… Continue

Added by Michael L. Atkinson on January 20, 2010 at 7:26am — 4 Comments

Bring people together - the need has never been greater!

Danny Meyer has done it again! Mailalino, his newest, Roman-style restaurant in the Gramercy Park Hotel, received two stars today from The New York Times' Sam Sifton who points out:

"Yes, the impetus for change here was Mr. Schrager’s hotel. But it is Mr. Meyer who has brought New Yorkers to the room, to the view, back to the neighborhood. His restaurants have almost always done this in some way. They encourage their customers to appreciate what sits outside them, to rediscover… Continue

Added by susan holaday on January 20, 2010 at 6:01am — 1 Comment

From One Chef (former) to Another: Get Real

From a Yelp Review in Portland OR

Since our table was quite long we could not converse with everyone at once. I made a visit to the other end of the table after dinner but before dessert to thank people for coming. One guest had ordered salmon and it was too under-done for her liking. She sent it back to the kitchen requesting it be cooked longer. The chef sent it back, saying that is how salmon should be cooked, refusing to cook it further. Needless to say, the guest did… Continue

Added by Jeffrey J Kingman on January 20, 2010 at 2:00am — No Comments

Yelp & Urban Spoon Comments

Guest Experience Staff Training

I'm researching a study of the restaurant industry, using Yelp and Urban Spoon as the main viewframe. While I've written in the past about how operators could use these two sites to their advantage, I feel compelled to share a different observation tonight.

Does your team need a refresher on what makes great experience for customers? I bet if you spent one hour with an all-staff meeting, asked them to all bring their laptops in for… Continue

Added by Jeffrey J Kingman on January 20, 2010 at 1:15am — No Comments

Why I joined FohBoh.

I've worked in many restaurants throughout the course of my career, each one as different as the next. Like most of you, I have steadily worked my way up the ladder, starting as a cook in a panini shop in San Francisco's Financial District, and ending up as a fine dining server at a top-rated restaurant on the San Francisco Peninsula.

I won't say that I've seen it all, but I've seen a lot.

Here's what I know. If done well and with intelligence, waiting tables can… Continue

Added by Michael Biesemeyer on January 20, 2010 at 12:30am — 6 Comments

The Real Cost of Social Media - by Danny Brown

excerpted from The Real Cost of Social Media - by Danny Brown

Social media is free. Social media is inexpensive. You don’t have to outspend your competition. Social media saves time. Social media will save your business thousands, if not millions.

These are all quotes I’ve seen from various voices recently. Each one pretty much agrees with the other – that social media is a great… Continue

Added by Jeffrey J Kingman on January 19, 2010 at 11:07pm — No Comments

How to Increase Footfall in your Pub Despite Competition

I was recently asked my advice by the owner of a small town center pub in Yorkshire, England (at http://www.thebarblogger.com/askbarry) about what to do to increase footfall in the premises despite the presence of a large chain pub on the same street that had dropped their prices considerably.

Here are the strategies I gave… Continue

Added by Barry Chandler on January 19, 2010 at 9:15pm — No Comments

Sign of a Bad Service Experience

Ok, I couldn't wait to share this one. I am a service hound, so serve me over-cooked Salmon, but please, give me good service. Bad, or in this case, no service, is unforgivable. I guess this customer was just tired of waiting.

Added by Michael L. Atkinson on January 19, 2010 at 4:16pm — 4 Comments

Haiti; how you can help now, and help later too

FohBoh intends to work with Share our Strength to help facilitate a foodservice industry response. Many of you, lead by Jeffrey Kingman, want to help with this disaster. Until this can be organized, I encourage you to visit SOS for information by clicking here.

If you would like to make a donation to these efforts, SOS has set up a fund where 100% of all donations… Continue

Added by Michael L. Atkinson on January 19, 2010 at 3:02pm — 1 Comment

Mental Anchoring, Do It And Get Higher Check Averages

A number of years ago I came across some research done by American Demographics. And at first blush it seemed more amusing than anything. According to the research, the one time people are most likely to spend the most money at a restaurant is the day they buy their home. The thinking is: “I’m already $300,000.00 in debt. What’s another hundred bucks?” So they order a more expensive food item to celebrate.

All by itself, that bit of… Continue

Added by Mark on January 19, 2010 at 2:09pm — 2 Comments

A little history, a little Mardi Gras, and a couple recipes too!

In addition, the Eiffel Tower Restaurant in New Orleans and Mardi Gras 2010

Join Drick Perry from Drick’s Rambling Cafe as we celebrate Mardi Gras, he is covering Mobile, AL while I cover New Orleans

Before we get to the omelet recipe, let me indulge you with a little New Orleans restaurant and Mardi Gras history. In 1981, engineers determined that the restaurant perched 562 feet on the third level above the Champ-de Mars in Paris weighted too much and was causing the… Continue

Added by Cajun Chef Ryan on January 19, 2010 at 9:16am — No Comments

The easiest meal in the world! – Adobo Filipino Style

So, being that yesturday was Monday and I usually come home in a half coma, and being that I am STILL moving into boyfriends 1000 square foot apartment from my 2800 square foot house, I decided I needed to make an easy throw together meal. Bring on the Adobo! Now this is no Mexican Adobo that most people are used to seeing (or eating) nope this adobo is a filipino recipe my sister in law gave me that is equally ROCKIN and EASY to make.

Here goes:

You will need the following for BASIC… Continue

Added by Kelly on January 19, 2010 at 7:56am — No Comments

Social Technology

Tasti D-Lite has launched what could be called "Eat & Tweet".

A lot of folks in the business world still don’t yet quite understand social-media ROI [return on investment],” Amos said. “You can measure every… Continue

Added by Paul Green on January 19, 2010 at 5:37am — No Comments

Only in Ireland Would You Find a Bar Like This…

Whilst walking through the countryisde of Kildare in Ireland recently I stumbled upon one of the most unique bars I had ever seen.

What you’re seeing here is a 40 foot long container complete with Murphy’s Irish Stout sign, two picnic tables on the roof, a ladder on the side to climb up and out of view are a number of beer kegs lying around! There’s even an overturned patio heater up there for when it gets cold!!!

Where… Continue

Added by Barry Chandler on January 18, 2010 at 10:18pm — No Comments

How a Bar Has Used Oysters To Attract Customers for Seven Generations

Moran’s Oyster Cottage in Clarinbridge in the west of Ireland is one of the most famous oyster restaurants in the world. Seven successive generations of the Moran family have run the restaurant which counts U2 among their happy customers!

I met with Michael Moran, a world champion oyster opener, who runs the family business and asked him what brings customers back again and again. Oh, and I tried the Oysters too….of… Continue

Added by Barry Chandler on January 18, 2010 at 10:14pm — No Comments

How to Increase Sales in Your Liquor Store/Off License

Based on a question posted at http://thebarblogger.com/askbarry I came up with four strategies for a business to improve sales when selling alcohol for consumption off the premises.

Want your own personalized video response to a problem you are having in your bar, restaurant or hotel business? Post your question in the comment box… Continue

Added by Barry Chandler on January 18, 2010 at 10:12pm — No Comments

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Social Wine Club for Craft Wineries


Restaurants may feel the pinch of pricier coffee later this year

Prices for arabica coffee futures hit a 26-month high amid a drought in Brazil, which produces a third of the world's coffee  -More

McDonald's rules out all-day breakfast in push to simplify

McDonald's breakfast menu accounts for 25% of the chain's U.S.  -More

Easy ways to use 5 uncommon spring greens

As light, crisp greens arrive at farmers markets and grocery stores, chefs are finding creative ways to add them to spring me -More


Posting a job or finding a job starts here at FohBoh. Call us about special $25 posting packages to syndicate across all major jobs boards.

National News

National Restaurant Association Offers Training DVDs on Harassment Prevention, Social Media Use, and Customer Service

The National Restaurant Association has released three new DVDs that offer best practices in dealing with harassment and discrimination, customer service training, and the first of its kind video guide on the use of social media.

Yum! Brands Reports First-Quarter EPS Growth of 24% Excluding Special Items

China Division System Sales Increased 17% with Operating Profit Growth of 80%; Yum! Reaffirms Full-Year Guidance of at Lea

Souplantation & Sweet Tomatoes Certified As Nation's Largest 'Green' Restaurant Chain

National Group Salutes Country's Only Large Restaurant Group to be 'Certified Green Restaurants®'

National Restaurant Association and EatStreet Release Online Ordering Guide

The National Restaurant Association and EatStreet have released a free educational guide focusing on online ordering and emerging restaurant technology trends.

Boyd's Coffee Launches Single-Cup Coffees For Retail And Foodservice

The coffees come in a variety of roast levels and include organic and Rainforest Alliance Certified™ options: French No. 6®, Red Wagon® Organic Coffee, Good Morning™, Hi-Rev® (delivers more caffeine), and Lost Lake™ Decaf Organic Coffee.


If you are looking for capital to start or grow your restaurant, create the next 501c3, develop and launch the next app for the restaurant industry,or want to help your peers in some meaningful way, we want to know about it.


TED: Hamish Jolly: A shark-deterrent wetsuit (and it's not what you think) - Hamish Jolly (2013)

Hamish Jolly, an ocean swimmer in Australia, wanted a wetsuit that would deter a curious shark from mistaking him for a potential source of nourishment. (Which, statistically, is rare, but certainly a fate worth avoiding.) Working with a team of scientists, he and his friends came up with a fresh approach — not a shark cage, not a suit of chain-mail, but a sleek suit that taps our growing understanding of shark vision.

TED: Michel Laberge: How synchronized hammer strikes could generate nuclear fusion - Michel Laberge (2014)

Our energy future depends on nuclear fusion, says Michel Laberge. The plasma physicist runs a small company with a big idea for a new type of nuclear reactor that could produce clean, cheap energy. His secret recipe? High speeds, scorching temperatures and crushing pressure. In this hopeful talk, he explains how nuclear fusion might be just around the corner.

TED: Sarah Lewis: Embrace the near win - Sarah Lewis (2014)

At her first museum job, art historian Sarah Lewis noticed something important about an artist she was studying: Not every artwork was a total masterpiece. She asks us to consider the role of the almost-failure, the near win, in our own lives. In our pursuit of success and mastery, is it actually our near wins that push us forward?

TED: Matthew Carter: My life in typefaces - Matthew Carter (2014)

Pick up a book, magazine or screen, and more than likely you'll come across some typography designed by Matthew Carter. In this charming talk, the man behind typefaces such as Verdana, Georgia and Bell Centennial (designed just for phone books -- remember them?), takes us on a spin through a career focused on the very last pixel of each letter of a font.

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