Thursday, May 29, 2014

Restaurant Day

It's almost two weeks since the restaurant day so I thought it's about time I write a short post about it. It's raining outside so no gardening today anyway.

I'd call the restaurant day a success for us as it was our first time and we were busy all day, we also made a small profit!

Here are some small tips in case you want to join the next restaurant day on August 17th yourself.

1. Team up with friends. The more the merrier, just be sure to split the responsibilities, so everyone knows what they will be doing. Your restaurant might get busy!

I'm happy we did our restaurant day as a group of people. We were busy all the time even if we were five people, and it was more fun as we got to hang out with our friends at the same time as cooking. 

2. Decide what you will serve. We decided to focus on local ingredients and food made from scratch. We did  home-made tortillas (also with tortilla-bread made from scratch) as tortilla is something everyone knows (even in Finland); this way we hoped that the step to try it would not be so big for a local crowd. We also served smoothies on the side and waffles for dessert.

This menu worked well for us as we were cooking outdoors so it had to be relatively simple "street-food" style. The tortillas were also served in a napkin so we could avoid using too many paper plates and also skip fork and knives.

3. Try to estimate how many food guests you will have. Or make a goal and prepare food for X amount of people. Decide what you will do if you run out of food early (close the restaurant early?/someone will go buy more food?) What will you do with the leftovers?

We managed this relatively well (lucky guess?) we had also prepared for a vegetarian option instead of our local meat option,  but it turned out it wasn't selling so we were left with quite a lot of beans. On the other hand they were canned so very easy to save.

4. If you want to have theme remember to add accessories and playlist for ambiance. I hope that to some extent our Mexican hats, fresh herbs and playlist attracted more people to our stand.

5. Decide the pricing, ask around what would your friends be willing to pay and compare prices in other restaurants. Count how much you need to sell with a certain price to make a profit.

We set our pricing a bit too low. We figured it afterwards as we got many comments on how cheap we were. However, our thinking when putting the price was that we didn't want the price to be a reason for people not to buy our food.

6. Advertise, ask all your friends to come,  put up signs and notes online (use the Restaurant Day webpage) and put notes around your area so people know to come for lunch/dinner on the day.

 7. Enjoy! Remember to have fun (it's not so serious) and afterwards pat yourself on the back and relax.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Doing Gardening, Green House and Restaurant Day

I am sticking to my goal of doing stuff, however, it turns out that doing other stuff leaves the blog suffering. (Funnily enough, according to my statistics the blog has never had so many visits, so welcome whoever you are!)

However, I'll try to make an update every now and then at least.

For now, only a short update: My plants are growing and we are working hard on building our own greenhouse, I try to post more pictures on that soon.

And on the weekend we are a group of friends organizing a pop-up restaurant close to where I live on the International  Restaurant Day. Come visit us if you are close! If you are living somewhere else, find the closest restaurant to you here. If you live close to Vaasa you should visit Slow Food Osterbothnia, and all the other cool events Maggie is listing on her blog. I wish I had the opportunity to go!

Anyone else of you having a pop-up restaurant on the International Restaurant Day?