Advice Guy

An industry expert answers questions on improving restaurant operations

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Latest Articles
Q.

Once we have to put calorie counts on our menus, how do we retain those customers? The food hasn’t changed; it is now just awareness.

A.

Menu labeling—for calories in particular—has been around at the municipal level (most notably in New York City) for some time now, and in 2010 federal legislation was prop

Q.

Who is responsible to pay when a customer orders a glass of wine or cocktail, takes a drink, then says they don’t like it? There’s nothing wring with it, they just don’t like it.

A.

In this question, let’s distinguish between right and wrong; good business and bad business.

Q.

We are charged for any and all ticket mistakes: unused butters, extra napkins on tables, food tickets left in window or food taken out of window without a ticket and not separating utensils. Is this legal?

A.

I’ve gotten this question a few times over the years, so it seems time to revisit.

Q.

What is the “ideal” percentage for administration? I was told that administration should represent 5 percent of sales.

A.

Since our piece on

Q.

I have music in my restaurant several times a week. I am starting to get quite a few people coming in wanting to listen to the music and only ask for water or bring in ice cream from a shop down the road. I don't want to charge a cover or ask folks if they plan on buying anything from our food or drink menu as they walk in. It is getting quite popular and this is happening more and more. Any advice? Thanks for your help.

A.

Continuing our series on mooching, it’s lovely that yo

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