After extended shutdowns, forward-thinking venues are looking to re-engage with their customers. If your clientele remain wary about dining in, perhaps consider some more innovative takeaway options than just the standard fish ‘n’ chips or pizza…
Shane Delia’s Maha, Supernormal, Longrain and Movida are just some of the 35-plus best restaurants in Melbourne that now deliver chef-prepared meals for home consumption. To replicate this approach, select some of your most popular menu items and then ensure your meals are chilled and ready for customers to “just heat, assemble, plate up and take all the credit” as the Providoor website promises.
The pandemic saw these food delivery services proliferate remarkably. But instead of seeing them as competitors, many venue operators are now signing up. Acting as partners can be a win/win for both the venues and the services, simply by virtue of scale. Identify which are the most successful services in your area and whether their offering is suitable for your menu and clients, and then get onboard.
Australia has long been the land of the UDL, and recent years have seen a rise in top-shelf spirit brands also offering mixed drinks in a can. But increasingly sophisticated palates are looking for something even more akin to the glamorous drinks they’d order in a bar or club. Hence the rise of the pre-bottled cocktail. Take a tip from Melbourne’s Everleigh cocktail bar, which now also offers pre-bottled cocktails via its website and also sells them to a wide range of other venues.
How often do your customers inquire after the ingredients in one of the sauces or marinades featured on your menu? Instead of giving them the recipe, why not bottle them up and offer them as a take-home special? And while you’re at it, consider other takeaway items you could offer outside of your usual menu. How about a breakfast burrito that’s just available on weekend mornings? Or ‘footy trays’ of pies, snags and steak sandwiches?
Drive-Through, Click and Collect
There’s a reason fast food outlets thrive on every street corner of the Western world. And that reason is convenience. While some of your customers may appreciate the Providoor approach detailed above, there will also be plenty of folk who will flock to a click and collect system, where the meals are prepared for them, and all they have to do is order online, drive by for pick-up, take home and enjoy. Easy!
This article was first published in State of Play, Issue 8, 2021