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09-13-2012, 11:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Manked View Post
Why do people frequently referred to cluttered menus? I'm just wondering, because I'd rather see a Sports Bar menu filled with tons of options than the ones where you walk in and they give you a laminated sheet of paper.

Maybe that's just me.
Cluttered as opposed to focused.

A focused menu for a sports bar includes "Sports Bar" type foods. Wings, nachos, pizza, burgers, club sandwiches, fries, zucchini sticks, etc. It doesn't include Lobster Bisque or Tuna Niquoise or a variety of curries, nor does it include a 30$ steak.

Menus that do well focus on the restaurant's strengths*. This creates an identity for the restaurant, and it helps prevent the restaurant from putting out sub-par food.

You can have upscale pub food if you want. But upscale pub food is still focused around sandwiches and meat and appetizers, of a high quality in terms of both cooking technique and ingredient selection. (Big Rig isn't that.)

*This isn't entirely true, chain restaurants like Kelseys do operate with a shotgun approach to menu selection - but they have other factors at work as well. And the food isn't particularly good.

e: If I were running Big Rig I'd dump the entire menu. Big Rig isn't a sports bar, it's a brewpub. They should be aiming to have upscale pub food. I'm thinking The Manx. I'd specifically be building the menu around each of the beers that are on offer. Every single item should have a single "best" recommended beer. Nothing that isn't beer focused. You make your money on the beer, you want to get your product out beyond the brewpub walls. You want everyone in the pub drinking, and you want to ideally have them pair food that will best highlight the beer's strengths.

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