Chicago-based multi-concept operator Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises (LEYE) is launching its first restaurant week promo to drive traffic at its dozens of restaurants as they struggle amid the pandemic.
Cities and states around the country have hosted restaurant week promotions for years, offering deals on three-course lunch and dinner menus to entice new customers and reward loyal diners, typically during the slow season.
It is more unusual, however, to see an individual restaurant operator offer such deals systemwide.
LEYE’s Restaurant Week promo will run from Sept. 28 through Oct. 4, with three-course lunch, brunch and dinner menus available for dine-in and carryout at more than 30 participating restaurants in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs. Prices vary depending on the concept, with three-course lunches starting at $24 and three-course dinners starting at $35. Diners can also add on optional beverage pairings.
Diners are offered a choice of appetizers, main dishes and dessert.
At Quality Crab & Oyster Bah, for example, the Restaurant Week dinner menu includes a choice of chilled seafood or New England clam chowder; seared sea scallops, fried chicken and ribs, or Alaskan king crab legs; and peppermint ice cream with hot fudge for dessert.
Independent operators, especially those that focused primarily on dine-in business pre-pandemic, have been especially hard hit in recent months. One third of operators surveyed by the James Beard Foundation and the Independent Restaurant Coalition said it was doubtful they’d be able to remain open through October.