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  • How to create an event to remember
    take an event and make it a shared life experience for a group of people takes a company that can think outside the box Substantial preparation and meetings orchestrating the minute to minute scheduling of the smallest details is necessary to pull off a great event When this is accomplished it is seamless from start to finish and the experience is exceptional World renowned POP Kollaborative has taken the art of event management to the next level POP is a life experience agency focusing on the broader process of creating new life experiences for their clients I had the opportunity to sit in on one of the information sessions at POP Kollaborative As company president Ken Kristoffersen said while enforcing the importance of being innovative in achieving the vision through the details Creativity takes a lot of money Innovation takes a lot of thought It was clear that this innovation helped POP to win three Star Awards at the 2013 Canadian Event Industry Awards including Most Outstanding Event Over 300 So what is it that sets these award winning functions apart from the typical office holiday event Could the details not be left to a hotel s banquet manager or a conference center s catering manager While there are hotels and venues that can accommodate large functions and can often handle the major elements required to host a good event they cannot match an event management company in the attention they can give to the smaller details In most venues the Banquet Manager or Catering Manager has more to focus on than just one event There are budgets to do staffing levels to take care of in house functions outside functions and a number of other factors depending on the venue With an event management company there is an event

    Original URL path: http://restaurantcentral.ca/Howtocreateaneventtoremember.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Nine ideas to decorate your restaurant for the holidays
    decorations and make sure that everything is in working order Then assess what you have Do your decorations look like they came from 1980 Do they look like they came from the dollar store Do they match your restaurant s brand identity Do you have enough products to make a statement If not it might be time to dump these decorations and start fresh 2 Clean before your decorate Make sure your restaurant sparkles before you begin putting up your holiday decorations Dust all your fixtures clean the windows and make sure all your walls ceilings and floors are spotless Assign each staff member a section of the restaurant to speed up the process 3 Select a theme Before you begin decorating make a plan for your restaurant While red and green are most common for Christmas and blue and silver for Hanukkah these colours might clash with the existing colours of your operation Look online for different themes or take a trip to your local arts and crafts store for more ideas Like branding all your decorations should have a cohesive flow matching the themes and colours of your restaurant 4 Use natural elements There is no need to spend thousands on dollars on new fancy decorations Use natural elements such as evergreen branches pinecones or berries with candles Spray paint these items according to the colours and themes you selected Buy a real Christmas tree so the tree s natural fragrance will alert your customers senses 5 Wrap it up Wrap empty boxes empty soup and tomato cans or other items in your kitchen with colourful wrapping paper and place them in different areas of your restaurant as well as under the tree Place the wrapped packages at different heights to create more depth 6 Use candles and

    Original URL path: http://restaurantcentral.ca/holidayChristmasdecor.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Allergies 101: Taking steps toward a safer dining experience
    and your staff can minimize the risk of accidental exposure provide information to help food allergic diners make informed menu choices and lessen the possibility of an allergy related incident in your establishment Recognizing the symptoms Despite your best efforts anaphylactic reactions do sometimes occur and it s best for staff to be able to identify and respond to an emergency Symptoms of anaphylaxis generally include two or more of these body systems skin the respiratory system and the gastrointestinal and or cardiovascular systems To remember the potential symptoms of an anaphylactic reaction it can help to Think F A S T 2 Face customers may experience hives itching redness or swelling of the face lips or tongue Airway customers may have trouble breathing swallowing or speaking or may experience nasal congestion or sneezing Stomach customers whose gastrointestinal systems are affected may experience stomach pain vomiting or diarrhea Total Body customers having a total body reaction may experience hives itching swelling weakness dizziness a sense of doom or even loss of consciousness Symptoms can appear within minutes of exposure to an allergen or may take longer to develop in some cases Additionally symptoms can vary from one person to the next and even from one reaction to another in the same person 1 Because anaphylaxis is unpredictable it should always be treated as an emergency situation Epinephrine The first line medication used to treat anaphylactic reactions is epinephrine In Canada the EpiPen brand of epinephrine auto injectors is available These devices contain a needle and a pre measured dose of epinephrine with the dosage based on a person s weight It is recommended that individuals with potentially life threatening allergies carry epinephrine with them at all times Dealing with an emergency According to the consensus guidelines contained in Anaphylaxis in Schools Other Settings allergic individuals should follow these five steps in the event of a life threatening allergic reaction Give epinephrine at the first sign of a reaction Call 9 1 1 or local emergency medical services Give a second dose of epinephrine as early as five minutes after the first dose if there is no improvement in symptoms Go to the nearest hospital right away ideally by ambulance and stay for possible treatment and observation Call an emergency contact person Someone experiencing anaphylaxis may not be able to self administer epinephrine If this is the case a family member or friend who is with them may be asked to help If the person is alone a manager may be asked to help 3 Stock epinephrine An undesignated or stock epinephrine auto injector refers to a device which is not prescribed for a specific person This medication may be used in an emergency to help someone who is experiencing an anaphylactic reaction but does not have his her own epinephrine available is experiencing a first time reaction or needs a second dose In Canada epinephrine auto injectors can be purchased without a prescription Some restaurants have taken a proactive approach

    Original URL path: http://restaurantcentral.ca/Allergies101.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Seven rules to successfully open a restaurant
    concept What you like doesn t matter because you are not the customer and what matters is what your customers like As Gordon Ramsay has said The secret of a good local restaurant is knowing your customers and catering for them Do your research Define your concept These days you need to have a unique food concept in mind when planning on opening a restaurant Are you planning to open a steakhouse pizzeria seafood restaurant sandwich shop family restaurant coffeehouse casual dining restaurant upscale restaurant bakery or an ethnic restaurant Don t go crazy with this and don t try to appeal to everyone Try to identify an unfilled niche in your local market and stay focused Create something better than anyone else something different and unique Don t be blind sided by too many options you can always add and change little by little as you go to stay fresh and up to date Once you have decided on a food concept then you can start working on your location and your menu Find a good location It is vital that you properly search for the right location and it is often best to use a real estate expert in assisting you with market analysis and zoning laws and regulations Find an appropriate location in a good market with high visibility sufficient parking convenient access and other positive attributes which are more critical today than ever Don t divulge the type of concept with this expert until you finalize the best location you don t want your competition to know about your concept Research the cost Plan on having five to eight months of working capital from the start There is nothing worse than running out of money before you open It is imperative that you are fully aware

    Original URL path: http://restaurantcentral.ca/Sevenrulestosuccessfullyopenarestaurant.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • How colour-coding can help prevent cross-contamination
    board and slices the bread What he didn t know is that a chef had just cut a piece of raw fish on that same white cutting board The cross contamination of bacteria from the raw fish to the bread is imperceptible but carries with it the risk of causing serious illness to an unsuspecting customer Even the fish protein itself could be a danger if the customer has a fish allergy Colour coded safety Now imagine a kitchen where every cutting board is a different colour each associated with a particular food group set by industry standards Red raw meats Yellow raw poultry Green fresh fruits and vegetables Blue seafood White ready to eat foods e g breads pastries cheese Brown cooked animal protein Purple to alert staff to potential allergens There is no magic in the colour designations Rather it s up to operators to train staff in proper use to help prevent cross contamination between different foods When a chef needs to cut an onion or lettuce for a sandwich she will be looking for that green cutting board that everyone else is using for vegetables And all staff will take care to slice bread on a white board not the yellow board that another worker was using to cut raw chicken For effective food safety you may want to incorporate colour coded versions of some or all of these into your kitchen Cutting boards knives tongs spatulas plastic scale protectors and wiping cloths help prevent cross contamination Food rotation labels help to easily identify different food types Peg boards make it easy to organize kitchen tools Lids plastic wraps food containers for different food types i e raw versus cooked lower the risk of cross contamination Shelf clips and tags can help identify proper storage order on wire racks in coolers Setting industry standards Colour coded cutting boards are now in use in many commercial kitchens and along with food safety training are accepted as a practical and effective way to minimize risks associated with cross contamination Colour coding Helps to discourage use of raw foods on the same cutting boards used for ready to eat foods Helps to train and remind workers on preventing cross contamination Makes it easy to follow proper methods as colours are distinctive and recognizable for various foods Crosses over any language barriers in the kitchen Says one chef Colour coding is critical in our kitchen When staff is preparing food it s a no brainer about which cutting board to use It really eliminates mistakes and with a quick scan of my kitchen I know that we have cross contamination under control Creating a zone of protection The use of a specific colour for equipment that comes in contact with allergens purple cutting boards purple handled knives purple utensils can provide a powerful reminder to staff When a purple piece of equipment is used in conjunction with an allergic person s meal it is a signal that this person s

    Original URL path: http://restaurantcentral.ca/colourcodingtopreventcrosscontamination.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Archives: Back of House
    lies in how they approach finding top performing staff Key considerations for choosing your next piece of refrigeration equipment It might receive less attention than the exciting high activity kitchen stations used for grilling or cooking but restaurant refrigeration equipment is critically important for the preparation and safe storage of food Yelp reviews How to overcome the bad business review Small business owners work hard to build a brand reputation and get their business steadily off the ground But what happens when a customer has a bad experience and vents in an online review Four ways loyalty marketing can turn your customers into regulars As a restaurant owner you likely see social media s potential for customer engagement and generating new leads through sharing Social media is powerful But it s just a single marketing channel Legal aspects to consider when your restaurant is running a contest Contests and sweepstakes are great promotional tools for your business but if your restaurant is running one there are some things you definitely need to know Under the Criminal Code of Canada How to build a loyalty marketing program for your restaurant in four easy steps You ve got the ideal location you offer great food and service at competitive prices and customer visits are fairly steady But it still may not be enough to drive the level of repeat business you need to succeed in The importance of putting quality first in food and wine marketing Several years ago a restaurateur whose approach to marketing could best be described as old school told me that marketing and public relations come down to the quality of food and wines and above all Jon Taffer to your bar s rescue If you call a Ghostbuster to get rid of ghosts who do you call

    Original URL path: http://restaurantcentral.ca/BackofHouseArchives.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Five ways to create a strong first impression with your outdoor signage
    right place Use bold colours as they are the most visually appealing but check that they complement one another Make sure that your logo text or slogan colours are contrasting for proper readability Keep in mind that the use of a colourful photo not only adds visual interest but will improve reader retention by 300 per cent over signage without photos Make sure your restaurant logo is unique and easily recognizable and choose colours that identify with your restaurant theme 2 Use an appropriate typeface Don t use words that are made up entirely of capital letters as they are more difficult to read It s easier to distinguish the shapes and forms of upper and lower case text versus all capital letters Keep it simple you don t want something looking like a book Just remember less really is more Keep your fonts legible and uncomplicated Your customers should understand what type of restaurant you operate at a quick glance As a general rule don t use more than two different letter styles in a single sign design it will reduce the effectiveness of your message and will confuse your customers 3 Convey a clear message What type of restaurant do you have Make sure that your logo text or slogan gives a clear indication of the type of restaurant and the kind of food you offer If you own a pizzeria and your business name is Big Dave add a descriptive word or phrase to make it clear as to what you do or offer For example Big Dave s Pizzeria would certainly attract the attention of customers wanting to eat pizza for lunch Make sure the message that you send in all of your designs and slogans is consistent and matches the concept of your restaurant 4

    Original URL path: http://restaurantcentral.ca/Outdoorsignage.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Tips to avoid the health-conscious ‘veto vote’
    While health is the underlying message taste is still strongly positioned to pique interest There are also certain trade offs many consumers are happy to make According to the 2015 BrandSpark Canadian Shopper study when it comes to bread and meat more than half of consumers believe the healthier versions whole wheat multigrain for bread and extra lean for meat taste better than traditional original versions As a result these are two categories where customers are open to innovation without worrying that taste will be sacrificed Overall offering healthy menu options through the notion of health without sacrifice will leave your guests feeling like they haven t made any compromises on taste or fulfillment making it more likely that they ll come back again for more Go natural While there s some skepticism around so called natural items consumers believe it s a claim that can be exaggerated the majority appreciate when companies make an effort to make products more natural An example of a brand that does this well is A W which promotes its use of simple great tasting ingredients farmed with care The initiative began with their better beef campaign and due to its success expanded to antibiotic free chicken and eggs from farms that use vegetarian feed with no animal by products Chipotle s new focus on food with integrity is another great example underscoring the chain s belief that there is a connection between how food is raised and prepared and how it tastes These brands are not alone in this strategy Many others are following suit because it s working Put benefits at the forefront Rather than drawing attention to what s absent in a particular menu item restaurants can instead focus on health related benefits that are present Claims such as being high

    Original URL path: http://restaurantcentral.ca/Tipstoavoidthehealthconsciousvetovote.aspx (2016-02-14)
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