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Food & Beverage

Food & Beverage

Food & beverage costs are usually the biggest single expense in most independent restaurants. They are also the most volatile operating expenses you've got.

While we believe that taking care of your guests and your staff are the two most important things you do in this business, you also need controls, good controls, when you're dealing with food and beverage. There are just so many ways to lose money, BIG MONEY in this area.

There are many independent restaurants that do a tremendous job taking care of their customers, but they still have a problem. They don't make any money, or they don't make as much money as their capable of making because of lax, or in some cases, almost nonexistant food and beverage controls.

Preventing food and beverage losses basically boils to the constant and proper execution of a few major controls and procedures. Although some of our topics get into some level of detail, we'll let you know which ones will give you the most bang for your efforts.

You may be familiar with much of the information discussed in this section. If that's the case, great, but the real issue is not whether "you" know it but whether "your people" know it and more important still are they actually "doing" these things consistently, time after time?.

DOWNLOAD: Perpetual Inventory & Ordering Template
DOWNLOAD: Perpetual Inventory & Ordering Template This handy tool does double duty, serving as both a 4 week perpetual inventory system and an order guide. It can be used to track and order food, beverage, paper, supplies, uniforms and linens. . . . more >>
DOWNLOAD: Menu & Recipe Cost Spreadsheet Template
DOWNLOAD: Menu & Recipe Cost Spreadsheet Template Knowing what each of your menu items costs to prepare is one of the most basic yet overlooked aspects of running a profitable restaurant. This comprehensive spreadsheet template will give you an easy-to-use tool to calculate and maintain the current cost of your menu and recipes. . . . more >>
DOWNLOAD: Restaurant Order Guide Form
DOWNLOAD: Restaurant Order Guide Form An effective ordering system has added benefits that go beyond the simple goal of maintaining sufficient product to serve your guests. Proper ordering procedures also help to keep fresh product in stock and serves as a backup just in case the person doing the ordering isn't there. . . . more >>
Recipe Costing Basics: How To Calculate The Cost of Your Menu Items
Operators who commit to an ongoing, accurate menu costing discipline have vital information to make intelligent business decisions which directly impact their food cost and bottom line. In this article, we look at how to put in place a "cornerstone" business practice of the restaurant industry. . . . more >>
DOWNLOAD: Ideal Cost Worksheet
DOWNLOAD: Ideal Cost Worksheet This spreadsheet calculates the ideal (theoretical) cost of sales based on the cost of menu items multiplied by each item's sales mix for a given period. It can be used to compare your actual and ideal cost of sales to determine whether a cost problem exists. . . . more >>
DOWNLOAD: Restaurant Checklists
DOWNLOAD: Restaurant Checklists Successful restaurants use checklists to ensure consistent execution throughout their operation. Includes opening, closing, shift change, purchasing, receiving, storage, preparation, cleaning checklists and our most popular download, the Customer Service Checklist. . . . more >>
Inventory Control Basics: A Systematic Guide for Controlling Inventory in Your Restaurant
by Joe Erickson
Inventory Control Basics: A Systematic Guide for Controlling Inventory in Your Restaurant One of the reasons the restaurant business is difficult is due to its approach to inventory control. Restaurants are both retailers and manufacturers, yet many of the principles for controlling inventory in retailing and manufacturing simply don't apply to restaurants. . . . more >>
The Five Points of Proper Portion Control
by Chef Joe Abuso
The Five Points of Proper Portion Control Your managers should be ever-vigilant about noticing any deviation from your standard portioning (and everything else) and correct, encourage or cajole as needed. . . . more >>
Bartending Etiquette: Avoiding Gaucheries & Faux Pas
by Robert Plotkin
Bartending Etiquette: Avoiding Gaucheries & Faux Pas There are unwritten conventions governing professional bar conduct. You know most of them intuitively. Then why is it that so many bartenders consistently step on those conventions (to the detriment of your customers' enjoyment, the bartender's own tips & your bar business)? . . . more >>
ONLINE SEMINAR: Serving & Settlement Controls
ONLINE SEMINAR: Serving & Settlement Controls Don't let poor cash and internal controls make it easy for people to steal the most desirable commodity you've got, CASH. This program examines the most common ways servers, cashiers, bartenders and bookkeepers steal and what controls you should have in place to protect your business. . . . more >>
Measurable Improvement: A Three-Phase Approach to Increasing Profits With Food Cost Control Systems
by Joe Erickson
Measurable Improvement: A Three-Phase Approach to Increasing Profits With Food Cost Control Systems You absolutely must have systems in place for every phase of your operation. In this article we'll discuss the systems and controls necessary for controlling food and beverage cost, many of which are used by the big chain operators. Used regularly, these systems will help you recognize and reduce your overall food and beverage cost. . . . more >>
How to Improve Your Health Inspection Scores & Have a Cleaner Restaurant
by David T. Denney and Deep Patel
How to Improve Your Health Inspection Scores & Have a Cleaner Restaurant Local laws regulate how frequently restaurant health inspections take place, but, in general, routine inspections occur twice a year and are typically unannounced. This article will provide a general overview of the inspection mechanism, what you can do to improve your establishment's health inspection score and other tips for running a clean operation. . . . more >>
DOWNLOAD: Prime Vendor Forms
A prime vendor program can be one of the easiest ways to lower your food cost & reduce non-productive purchasing time. Here are all the forms you need to help you choose the right distributor & get the best deal. . . . more >>
DOWNLOAD: Waste/Spill Tracking Sheet
DOWNLOAD: Waste/Spill Tracking Sheet This form provides the means to track food and bar waste as it occurs. Designed for clipboards, this form can be placed in the kitchen or bar so that re-cooks, spills, and wrong orders can be accounted for. . . . more >>
Keep a Running Inventory on Your Key Products
Keep a Running Inventory on Your Key Products Keeping a running inventory on some of your key products is one of the most fundamental and effective of all inventory controls, yet many operators don't do it. If you are one of those who doesn't, chances are you have an opportunity to cut your food cost and start making more money beginning tomorrow. . . . more >>
Take the Worry Out of Weekly Food Inventory
by Joe Erickson
Take the Worry Out of Weekly Food Inventory Most independent restaurants calculate their food cost only once a month. Yet, virtually all the major chain restaurants calculate their food cost each week. According to industry averages, chain restaurants (before corporate expenses) are two to three times as profitable as independent restaurants. While weekly food costing isn't the entire the reason, it's part of it. . . . more >>
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