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Tag: restaurant trends

THE RIGHT FURNITURE FOR YOUR ESTABLISHMENT

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While great food and excellent customer service are at the top of the list for restaurants to strive to maintain, the furniture in your establishment is also an important factor. Customers come to a restaurant to relax and enjoy a meal out without the stress of grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning. The design of your restaurant needs to be a comfortable space and pleasurable ambiance to entice your customers back for future visits. Choosing the right seating may differ depending on the type of establishment. Let’s take a glimpse at a few types of restaurants and the recommended seating options:

FAST FOOD – With the quick service options, serving people on the go is the focus. Metal chairs, laminate or resin tabletops are common because they are stain resistant, durable and easy to clean.

CAFÉ OR BISTRO – Solid wood or granite tabletops are popular in this intimate and relaxed ambiance setting. Wood chairs and bar stools are also common to portray a distinctive look.

FAMILY STYLE DINING – Cozy booths, solid wood or reversible tabletops are often found in family style dining establishments. Seating may also feature wood or metal chairs.

FINE DINING – Attention to detail is required in fine dining. Seats may be wooden, but well cushioned to keep customers comfortable. High quality solid wood tabletops and upholstered chairs are usually found along with décor to help justify the higher prices and cuisine.

At SIMS Superior Seating, we definitely understand the importance of a positive customer dining experience. Contact us today at 800-729-9178 and let our experts help you furnish all of these types of establishments.

 

 

RESTAURANTS EXPLORE 5 TECHNOLOGY TRENDS

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Last month at the National Restaurant Association (NRA) Show, restaurateurs packed the Tech Pavilion to review five restaurant technology trends. Searching for solutions to increase sales, manage business and improve customer service were the motivators to explore these technological trends.

  1. DIGITAL MENUS – Paper menus are being replaced by digital options. Over time this trend could provide cost savings, eliminate the need for reprinting and increase sales – all without sacrificing great service.
  2. PERSONALIZED MARKETING – Tools can help restaurants customize their offerings based on past customer behavior. One company showcased a system that integrated with the restaurant’s POS system and allows the restaurant to market individual guests via email, text or social media.
  3. MEDIA INTEGRATION – Managing multiple systems and hardware can become cumbersome. Products offered help restaurants to integrate digital signage and menus, automated order taking, social media, music, etc. without having to control it on a PC.
  4. ELECTRONIC SCHEDULING – To help eliminate the hassle of restaurant schedules and last minute changes, digital tools can make the process easier for both managers and employees. Now restaurant managers and employees can set schedules, request time off, swap shifts and view the schedule via smartphones and tablets.
  5. DATA SECURITY – Due to recent data breaches at major retailers, restaurants are making sure their customers’ payment information stays secure. One company has a tool that immediately encrypts cards when they are swiped and sends immediate alerts when a card is fraudulent.

 At SIMS Superior Seating, we understand enhancing the customer experience. We have been manufacturing high quality furniture to meet the diversified needs of the food service and hospitality industry since 1977. Whether you or your clients are early in the design process or interested in updating and renovating the look and feel of an existing establishment, the SIMS experts are on top of innovations that capitalize on important trends, improve your bottom line and keep your clients happy. Contact us today at 800-729-9178.

 

CONNECTING WITH THE MILLENNIAL GENERATION DINERS

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Group of mixed students celebrating completion of high schoolAccording to Industry Edge, one quarter of the U.S. population consists of The Millennial generation (ages 18-35). Being an influential demographic, restaurants of all sizes and types are trying to connect with this food-loving, tech-savvy consumer base. During a recent panel discussion at the National Restaurant Association Show, connections, attractions and the ability to earn the millennial diners’ brand loyalty is key to chain restaurant chefs.

Social media plays a major role in connecting with millennials. They are interested in brands’ stories and why the products and the brands connect with their lifestyle. By being active on social media and having an engaging web presence, establishments such as Dunkin’ Brands, share recipes and stories that encourage consumers to interact with the brand outside of the store. “It’s really about that connectivity and making a connection with our brand and our guests … they want to feel that connection all throughout their choice,” said Heidi Curry, senior manager of global R&D for bakery at Dunkin’ Brands. Other brands publish profiles of team members and news about restaurant technology. By sharing stories that millennials can relate to, you are building brand loyalty and repeat future business.

This generation knows what they want. They do not take anything for granted. If they don’t like the way something is being done, they will vocalize their concerns and expect to be heard.

Millennials are changing the restaurant landscape and setting expectations. Connecting with them is essential for establishments beyond securing sales. They are making strides not just for their own generation, but for future generations as well.

SIMS Superior Seating has been manufacturing high quality furniture to meet the diversified needs of the food service and hospitality industry since 1977. Whether you or your clients are early in the design process or interested in updating and renovating the look and feel of an existing establishment, the SIMS experts are on top of innovations that capitalize on important trends, improve your bottom line and keep your clients happy. Contact us today at 800-729-9178.

 

 

A SECOND SERVING OF THE TOP 10 CLASSIC AMERICAN DINERS – SIMS SUPERIOR SEATING

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If the first 5 diners of the Top 10 Classic American Diners haven’t got your mouth watering, these next 5 surely will. According to the HuffingtonPost.com, we will take a trip with Mile High Biscuits in Utah, through the Silver Crescent City where they “love them one and all”, to a 1939 classic “vinyl seating and marble countertops” diner in one of the prettiest towns in America. Bon Appétit!

5. Ruth’s Diner (Salt Lake City, UT) – Serving comfort food since 1930, Ruth’s diner is one of the oldest dining establishments in the state of Utah. Specialties such as the Mile High Biscuits with Country Gravy and the Holy Smokes Pulled Pork Sandwich with homemade barbeque sauce will surely have you coming back for more.

4. Mickey’s Dining Car (St. Paul, MN) – Looking for something opened 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, then Mickey’s is your best bet. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, featured on Food Network and a landmark star in several Hollywood films, Mickey’s has been serving good food at a fair price since 1939.

3. Slim Goodie’s Diner (New Orleans, LA) – The incredible fare and toe-tapping music aren’t the only reasons visitors from around the world visit Slim Goodie’s Diner in New Orleans. Slim Goodie’s Diner embodies the heart and soul of giving back to the community. After Hurricane Katrina (and without power), the staff rallied and helped feed hundreds of local residents. After Hurricane Isaac, again they rallied and helped feed displaced victims. They definitely stand by their proclamation of “the best customers anyone could ask for, we love them one and all!”

2. A1 Diner (Gardiner, ME) – Serving a fresh menu since 1946 with ingredients locally sourced, A1 Diner is committed to serving their community. If you are lucky to stop by, try out their Sicilian Lamb Stew and seasonal treats such as Pumpkin Caramel Pudding.

1. Wellsboro Diner (Wellsboro, PA) – Located in one of the prettiest towns in America, visitors enjoy a home cooked meal in Wellsboro Diner after visiting the gorge at the Pennsylvania Grand Canyon. Step back into time when they opened their doors in 1939 and enjoy a mouthwatering mile-high cake or one of their famous baked on-site pies.

SIMS Superior Seating has been manufacturing high quality furniture to meet the diversified needs of the hospitality and food service industry since 1977, so we understand the needs of the family dining experience or the restaurant seating needs of a diner style establishment. If you are looking for a partner with deep experience in every facet of commercial seating manufacturing, call us today at 800-729-9178.

TOP 10 CLASSIC AMERICAN DINERS – SIMS SUPERIOR SEATING I BOOTH SEATING

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95-newportThere is no doubt that diners are always in style. Famous for serving simple comfort foods at reasonable prices, this type of dining experience has been enjoyed for many generations. Often found are chrome, vinyl and neon, and loads of burgers, fries and milkshakes! But not all diners fit the mold; some are a reflection of the community it serves or a taste into the comfort foods of Europe. Whatever diner style tickles your taste buds best, here are 5 of the top 10 classic American diners according to the HuffingtonPost.com:

10. Zip’s Dining Car (Dayville, CT) – Famous for their open-faced sandwich featuring an 8 oz. rib-eye seared to perfection, Zip’s has been in business since 1954. Zip’s was used in one of Stephen King’s novels and has been visited by Joe DiMaggio and Renee Zellweger.

9. Skyliner Diner (Rochester, NY) – Moved from Williamsport, PA to the atrium of the Strong Children’s Museum in Rochester, milkshakes and root beer floats are enjoyed by visitors of all ages.

8. Pink Cadillac Diner (Natural Bridge, VA) – This diner that serves a famous “Elvis” burger is a “must see” if you are in the area. Life-size cutouts of movie icons such as Elvis and Marilyn Monroe adorn this establishment.

7. Goody Goody Diner (St. Louis, MO) – Rumored to be inspired by the Johnny Mercer tune “Goody Goody!” this popular diner has been serving up memories since 1948. You could wait a bit due to its popularity, but their famous dish of chicken and waffles is well worth the wait.

6. 66 Diner (Albuquerque, NM) – Step back into the 50’s with this full soda fountain that boasts the best milkshakes in Albuquerque.

Be sure to catch the second serving of the Top 10 Classic American Diners in our next blog.

SIMS Superior Seating has been manufacturing high quality furniture to meet the diversified needs of the hospitality and food service industry since 1977, so we understand the needs of the family dining experience or the restaurant seating needs of a diner style establishment. If you are looking for a partner with deep experience in every facet of commercial seating manufacturing, call us today at 800-729-9178.

STARTING A QUAINT BISTRO ON A BUDGET? 5 RESTAURANT TOOLS YOU SHOULD PURCHASE

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gallery6.jpgYou’ve been passionate about cooking since you were a kid making memories with your parents in the kitchen. Now you’ve turned your passion into a reality by opening your dream bistro. There are many things that go into opening a restaurant, but we are going to discuss 5 kitchen tools you need to purchase from a restaurant supply store. These few items will make a huge difference between a “food joint” and delivering what you intended – a reflection of your passion turned into a unique and quaint culinary experience.

1. CHEF’S KNIVES

If you have a tight budget initially, there are many options to choose from that won’t set you back. Look for lightweight but sharp chef’s knives with plastic handles. Also invest in a knife sharpener to help prolong the life of the edges.

2. PLASTIC CUTTING BOARDS

Regardless if you already have a great butcher block, plastic boards in a variety of sizes are always good tools to have on hand for cutting, slicing and dicing.

3. MIXING BOWLS

You can find quality, sturdy metal or glass mixing bowls in the restaurant supply stores. You may want several sets on hand for mixing wet and dry ingredients. They are typically inexpensive, practically indestructible and can sometimes double as double boilers.

4. FRYING PANS

The ideal purchase would be All-Clad pans, however this isn’t always in the budget when first opening an eating establishment. Strong aluminum pans that can withstand high heat and high-stress cooking are a great second choice.

5. BAKING SHEETS

These pans aren’t just for baking cookies. Baking sheets or sheet pans are very versatile. Look for heavy-duty pans that won’t buckle or warp. Stock up on half-sheet pans and quarter-sheet pans for a variety of cooking applications such as toasting nuts and other prep projects.

All of these items can be found in your local restaurant supply store or online. Just take the time to do a little research and you can stock your bistro kitchen with these tools on a budget and still deliver great results to your customers.

Once you are ready to start your adventure, contact SIMS Superior Seating, a leading expert in the hospitality furniture industry since 1977. We can help you choose high quality furniture for your new establishment within your budget. Contact us today at 800-729-9178.

OUTSOURCING YOUR KITCHEN – FUTURE RESTAURANTS

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IMG_0574According to the National Restaurant Association (NRA), American eating habits are shifting more towards “food away from home” (picking up from restaurants) rather than getting food at grocery stores. Hudson Riehle, Senior Vice President, Research & Knowledge Group for the NRA, says that 75% of restaurant industry traffic is off-premise. Whether a customer is ordering takeout or delivery, 75% of Americans are not consuming the food in the restaurant, but are consuming it elsewhere. Here are a 3 reasons why this trend is being seen today.

DOMESTIC DUTIES OUTSOURCED: If we are living in a society that outsources domestic duties such as cleaning, child care and transportation, why not the kitchen? By outsourcing the kitchen duties, more time is allowed to spend with your family or friends doing something you probably enjoy more.

PRESSURE LIFTED TO COOK HOME-COOKED MEALS: Unlike the past when many of us ate home-cooked meals 95% of the time, things have changed. Most families have dual-working parents, multiple extracurricular activities for the kids, extended education programs and more; and having the time to spend a few hours in the kitchen can be a difficult task. We have become busier than ever these days and it’s no surprise that few of us have the time to shop, prep and cook meals on our own. No wonder it’s easier for us to turn to restaurants to provide those services for us.

COST AND TIME SAVINGS: As discussed already, the amount of time spent in the kitchen can add up to time you don’t always have, especially during the week. By outsourcing your kitchen, you can gain back the time and often the cost. Cost of gas to visit several grocery stores to find all the ingredients. Cost of a babysitter or daycare if you long to shop without your children. Cost of organic or exotic foods that are either hard to find or you have to buy in larger amounts that you will ever need. Cost of food you purchase that may rot or go stale before you consume it. By outsourcing you can spend more time with your family and friends and save a few Benjamins in the meantime.

This is an interesting trend, however this might not be something you choose to do 7 days a week. Many families do enjoy some time in the kitchen together. But for those days that it seems more like a stressful chore, pick up your phone or jump online and place that order!

For more information regarding SIMS Superior Seating and the seating products we offer, please give us a call at 800-729-9178.

 

 

 

 

INVESTING IN A FRANCHISE – SIMS SUPERIOR SEATING

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trendingHow widespread is franchising? According to the International Franchise Association (IFA), “by 2001, there were 767,483 business establishments in all domestic franchise systems (either owned by franchisors and franchisees), which employed almost 10 million people, with direct output close to $625 billion, and a payroll of $230 billion.  These establishments account for significant percentage of all establishments in many important lines of business: 56.3% in quick service restaurants, 18.2% in lodging, 14.2% in retail food, and 13.1% in table/full service restaurants”.

Investing in a franchise is the best way to go into business for yourself, but not by yourself. Think of it as the opportunity to embrace your entrepreneurial spirit, but have the back up and support of a mentor (the franchisor). But as with any major decision, you should thoroughly research the industry and the options of owning a franchise. You should also explore the dynamics of fostering a positive relationship with the franchisor and make sure you are clear with your expectations. Your mission should be to consistently bring value to the franchise and not just collect fees. Here are three reasons why people make the investment in a franchise:

1. BE IN CHARGE OF YOUR DESTINY – Many prospective franchisees are frankly tired of depending on someone else to write their future. Frustration in the workplace, micro-managing bosses or corporate politics can drive many people to seek opportunities where they are able to have the final say in relation to business decisions.

2. FINANCES AND RETIREMENT GOALS – In the past 15 years there is an increasing trend in large corporations to downsize more experienced managers in the 45-60 year old bracket. It’s difficult to gain employment at the level they are accustomed to living. Owning a franchise can help them accomplish the goal of employment and help them acquire a significant amount of wealth for retirement.

3. LIFESTYLE GOALS – Adopting a positive work-life balance is very important to many prospective franchisees. The desire to reduce business travel, working hours and job related stress is a huge motivation for investing in a franchise. And with so many franchise opportunities to choose from, a prospective franchisees will undoubtedly find the option that best matches their needs.

Are you interested in owning a franchise? Visit the International Franchise Association (IFA) for tips and information to help you get started.

Once you are ready to start your adventure, contact SIMS Superior Seating, a leading expert in the hospitality furniture industry. We can help you make a positive, lasting impression on your customers, clients and employees with high quality furniture designed to meet the diversified needs of the food service and hospitality industry since 1977. Contact us at 800-729-9178 for more information.

CHOOSING THE RIGHT FABRIC FOR YOUR ESTABLISHMENT

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Vinyl-2Choosing the right fabric for your restaurant, diner, business or bar plays a key role in making your establishment unique and inviting to your customers. The main factors to consider are style and durability in choosing the right fabrics. Here are a few questions to ask yourself about your current fabric or the fabric you are considering:

  • Does the style make a positive statement about your establishment?
  • Does it reflect the atmosphere and environment you are aiming to portray?
  • Will the fabric uphold the traffic levels in your establishment?
  • Would you return to your establishment if you were the customer?

FABRIC STYLE

You’ve worked hard to design or update your establishment. Does the style you’ve chosen for your fabric reflect that hard work and will it be something you will enjoy for many years to come? It should not only positively reflect your style but also compliment the style of the furniture and add to its character. Choose designs and colors that make your customers feel comfortable and satisfied. A happy customer is a repeat customer!

FABRIC DURABILITY

Being in the hospitality industry, durability is key. Customer traffic and location of furniture are the main factors to consider. Make sure to work with a fabric expert at SIMS to choose the best fabric for your establishment. Not only do you want to wow your customers with the style of the fabric, but also with the durability. Fabric that is worn, torn or fraying reflects negatively on your entire establishment.

To take a look at some of the fabrics we offer at SIMS, click here. Contact us for more information regarding custom upholstery repeats and roll lengths or to request a swatch card.

SIMS Superior Seating has been manufacturing high quality furniture to meet the diversified needs of the food service and hospitality industry since 1977. Whether you or your clients are early in the design process or interested in updating and renovating the look and feel of an existing establishment with unique and inviting fabrics, the SIMS experts are on top of innovations that capitalize on important trends, improve your bottom line and keep your clients happy. Call us at 800-729-9178 for more information.

BOOTHS AND TABLE TOPS – UPDATE YOUR RESTAURANT

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Congratulations! You’ve made your dream a reality–you are a restaurant owner. You’ve prevailed through the often-challenging process of building and zoning codes, health and safety regulations, purchasing and maintaining equipment and marketing your new dream restaurant. You are a few years into ownership and you just realize you didn’t take into consideration how your furniture was going to play a role in your new venture. More specifically, how booths and table tops can add style and class to any trendy food spot.

Let’s take a look at these two important pieces of furniture that can not only make a positive impact on your clientele, but can help increase your market share and profits by simply making the right decision to update your restaurant.

Restaurant booths and table tops can immediately give your restaurant a face-lift. They invite customers to gather together to share the dining experience. Make sure to choose booths that have adequate cushion and inviting and up-to-date styles. Determine the atmosphere you are trying to portray with your restaurant and choose styles based on what you are trying to accomplish.

Another thing to consider, in addition to cushion and style, is how easy or difficult it is to clean these pieces. You are running a restaurant, so cleanliness and being sanitary is extremely important on many levels, especially those that your customers come in contact with. Some surfaces and fabrics are more susceptible to chemical alternation and damage. Do your research or hire a restaurant and hospitality seating specialist who can recommend the best products for your restaurant.

Keep in mind as you choose booths and table tops that you are showing your customers that you are committed to not only serving excellent food, but you are trying to give them an environment of comfort and style that will keep them coming back for more.

SIMS Superior Seating has been manufacturing high quality furniture to meet the diversified needs of the food service and hospitality industry since 1977. Whether you or your clients are early in the design process or interested in updating and renovating the look and feel of an existing establishment, the SIMS experts are on top of innovations that capitalize on important trends, improve your bottom line and keep your clients happy. Contact us to find out more.