weeks to showcase in the space “waste that occurs at every link
in the food chain.”
For $15 a plate, customers could choose from a menu that
included “Dumpster Dive Vegetable Salad,” incorporating the
outer leaves of bok choy and fennel, kohlrabi and apple peelings,
with the liquid from chickpeas forming the base for the dressing.
There were cured cuts of waste-fed pigs, and fish collar served
with radish and turnip green salsa verde and chicken crumbs. As
Pete Wells, restaurant critic for The New York Times, said, “The
food was great, full of the surprises that happen when cooks run
into inspiration at full creative tilt.
“Now, whenever one of my children complains about dinner,
I’ll silence him by saying that I once ate garbage and liked it.”
Ezra Eichelberger, professor of hospitality and service
management at The Culinary Institute of America, wrote in
“Menu as Marketing Tool,” Mise en Place, June 2012: “One of
the restaurant chef’s most underutilized tools is the menu. Most
restaurants’ menus are just a list of offerings, but they can be
used to increase guests’ satisfaction and restaurant profits.”
You owe your guests more than a simple listing of dishes, and
this is something worth taking time and effort to fix. Pay attention to
the menu, and make sure it helps diners find dishes they truly enjoy.
Your bottom line will benefit when they come back for more.
JAN greeNBerg, AUTHor oF HUDSoN vAlley HArveS T (CoUNTryMAN PreSS, 2003), IS BASeD
IN rHINeBeCk, New york.
oPPosi Te, lef T To righ T: Menus from ocean Prime, Tapacubo and The Normal
above: Chilean sea bass at ocean Prime
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