Nightshade

Since they don’t have prices on their menu - at least not the online one - how would one know what a “better price” is?

Look at photos of the menu on Yelp.

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There are a number of sources for recent menu prices and there are myriad reasons for not posting menu prices on the web. These places aren’t doing much take out business.

What are those reasons? (Genuine question!)

  1. because you have to pay someone by the hour to update them

Some of the best and most expensive places on the planet have their prices listed. Except for “market price” items I consider it, as I said, a deal breaker. They won’t miss my business.

Now that is hilarious.

Price of some ingredient goes up so much you have to raise the price on a dish, you can’t update the web menu immediately, some dickhead customer gets angry that the price is higher than it said online.

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“Menu prices subject to change without notice.”

“Prices listed online for reference only. Please see our restaurant for the most up-to-date pricing.”

“Prices and ingredients may vary slightly depending on seasonal availability. Please call or visit us for the most up-to-date information”

“Market Price”

…honestly, these things aren’t difficult. This is 2019, and all it takes to update your website is <5 minutes and a computer or smartphone.

How many restaurants have you run?

Enough to know the basic capabilities of a modern POS system.

Seriously, do you print menus? Then you have a computer. While you’re waiting for your daily menus to print, upload the file to your website. Takes less than a minute, and provides great customer service. Also helps many guests order more quickly, increasing table turnover.

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I mean, I think these days it is pretty easy to update this stuff and I do appreciate places like Rustic Canyon that update menus and prices online daily. But I get why a restaurant may not want to put time and capital into that aspect. I mean, most restaurant websites are UX and UI nightmares to begin with.

That said, Yelp is good for very little, but menus and food pics are covered well there.

I find it weird to make a lack of web savvy a deal breaker when anyone can get the information they seek. But okay.

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I would say it’s more likely the case that restaurants outsource their website design and have to pay for additional updates

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So I’ll take that as a “none.”

Okay, Robert. You can take it however you want; I really don’t have anything to prove to you. Have a nice evening!

That’ quite true. Getting a head start is good.

Next line item on receipt:

5% Daily Menu Updating Charge

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Personally, this is why I’m a fan of posting menus and prices online (though not a deal breaker for me, I still think the pros outweigh the “cons” of this practice): once I’m seated, I only want to hear about the daily specials, as I pretty much already know what I’m ordering. Maybe I have a question or two to help me determine which main I end up ordering, or want to inquire about the feasibility of a preferred dietary substitution. I honestly spend more time looking at the cocktail menu than I do the dinner menu once I’m at the restaurant, and all I do is make a quick skim to find all the gin-based ones + anything else that sounds particularly inventive.

I like to get my ticket in quickly so we can get down to business.

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I ‘feel’ like it’s a pretentious thing. Like ‘we’re so wonderful you shouldn’t want to ask.’ I find it off-putting. And if they have an ingredient or two that may fluctuate wildly either build in a cushion or make it “MP.”

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