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New shop new adventure & pictures

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hi everyone just come across this site while looking for some help and just trying to broaden my experience and look for some tips. Me and my wife have just opened a sandwich shop and what a shock to the system.

I am a qualified electrician with little experience in running a sandwich shop /cafe and my wife has just left a managers roll in a major bank to follow our passion and childhood dream. I love cooking and am good at what I do but my ideas need to be rained in sometimes because we are trying to cater for everyone at the moment.

I have come on here to try and get some advice and guidance from other people who run kitchens.... We have got a great idea but need to makesure it will work before we make the move and change our menus after only 3 weeks of trading. Here is a few pictures of our baby and I hope I can get talking to a lot of professional chefs and get some excellent advice
post #2 of 9


Hi! and welcome to ChefTalk. You will receive some good advice from those here.

If you have established yourself in the opening weeks, a new concept might be confusing to your customers. Great ideas are fine but they need to be tried and true to be successful. I always use the example that, you do a pro forma, design and develop a plan to open up a cookie shop.

Well your in the cookie business, right? BUT, all your customers are asking for brownies, Well, then you better be in the brownie business.

I would suggest you take and ask for the comments of the clientele you already have. If that isn't many, then really seek out the true demographics of your area. go cold to the population in your area. Pitch your idea and record what type of feedback you get. This is just a suggestion from me personally, there are many ways to go about it. Say you want to turn your business into a pot pie place. You spend the money to do so. Then the first few customers come in and tell you, "oh the guy down the street tried this same thing and failed"

Anyway, this is just me and I wish you all the luck in the world for success and I respect anyone who goes for their dreams.

BTW place looks very nice, organized and clean.

post #3 of 9

What exactly are you serving now, post your menu and what is it that you want to change to?

post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 

Here's our menu and thanks for your replies we have learnt a lot in our first 3 weeks..... First lesson was our specials are just getting wasted because everyone is looking for a hot baguette.....Our shop is on a very busy road and we need to pick up with speed for people on there short breaks, so our idea is to have ready made hot baguettes (chicken or steak) and then have 6-8 different warm sauces ready to take away ... (BBQ, sweet chillie, reggae reggae, mushroom gravy, piri piri, Chinese). This way we can be a lot faster for people who are on a short lunch break. 30-40% of our customers are 6th form students and we think this dipping sauce will work well. Would you recommend making our own sauces or out the bottle?

Thanks again for getting back to us and we appreciate any advice and guidance anyone can offer us wink.gif
post #5 of 9

Your menu looks good---I agree--fast service is a must---those hot baguettes are a winner---

post #6 of 9

I would focus on your regular menu, there is no need to have four specials. You cant have something for everyone.

post #7 of 9

There are a lot of home cooks in this particular fourm. You may have more pro advice if you post in the Professional chefs forum:

Gebe Gott uns allen, uns Trinkern, einen so leichten und so schönen Tod! Joseph Roth.
Gebe Gott uns allen, uns Trinkern, einen so leichten und so schönen Tod! Joseph Roth.
post #8 of 9
@thesandwichstopA few thoughts.....Nice looking place...clean lines and colors...i see lots of prep with your menu. My tendency would be to streamline and to un clutter your menu. by this i mean, do you really need 3 styles of chicken soup or 3 styles of chicken sandwich? 9 styles of hot chicken baguette sandwiches? do you need ham,cheese and onion as a separate sandwich from a ham and cheese sandwich? Trust me, people know how to modify food orders to get what they want. Customers are used to paying for additions. Just don't gouge them.
Highlight your bread for the sandwiches and panini's...people love good artisan you make it? State that. Anything you make in house state that too. Local, organic, house made are positive key buzz words.
I agree with chefbuba that you do not need 4 daily specials. The same daily special for each day of the week will have people lining out the door for it...monday-meatloaf, tuesday-chicken curry, wednesday-scouse etc. etc.etc. I think your menu is a bit too large to try to get out so many different and multiple orders during your short rush. You can always add items later as specials once you have the pace, tempo precision and expediting down pat. Has the delivery side been worth it? Can you spare a body to run deliveries during your rush? Your lunch delivery person is caught in the same lunch rush traffic as your customers. Do you have a minimum order amount? Maybe rethink that if its not working( i find it usually does not)....maybe orders of 10 or more..People will try you once because you are new....they will keep coming back because you are good. Keep your menu as clean and bright as your shop.
Lastly, close on will be more refreshed, more productive and less disgruntled if you take a day for yourself and your need to have a day to is waay too short, and getting shorter, even if you love what you do. Hope this helps....wink.gif

all the best to you and your new venture.....

As to your question of whether to make the sauces for your hot baguettes, i vote yes if you are able to and can continue to do so without compromise. They sound lovely.
Edited by durangojo - 10/14/14 at 8:55am

food is like should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne


food is like should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

post #9 of 9

Chef Talk has a rep for no holds barred GREAT advice.

The place looks great.... I would prolly sit down and eat there in place of my usual to go orders.

Keep it nice and clean esp the Bathrooms.

Check it several times a day to ensure it remains brite and shiney and smells that way also.

Totally agree with a streamlined menu for now.

The prep will become a dreaded task if you keep all that on menu.

I love milkshakes but they are labor intensive during a busy lunch run and if you don't have the measurements down to the ml will become a daily drain on your food cost.




OBTW... congrats on your new life.

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