Meat Picks | 2.14.14

Upward Trends

dinner-in-the-skyHave you heard that Dinner in the Sky is coming to Las Vegas and other warm weather US towns in the near future?

The concept of elevating diners 180 feet up in the air (to the tune of $500/head) was first developed abroad seven years ago after a marketer and a “bungee jumping impresario” put dinner-in-the-sky-israeltogether an aerial dining event. The response was so great the duo was inspired to franchise the idea.

The US Franchisee says she has 3,500 names on a waiting list and 1,000 corporations with expressed interest in doing events. The Vegas franchise will no doubt debut to high acclaim.

Culinary Controversy

Last month, all H-E-double-toothpicks broke out over a crying 8 month old baby at Alinea. At $200+ a person, Chef/Owner Grant Achatz was compelled to tweet about the situation in real time citing angry diners and wondering if he needs to have a no kid policy – that set the perpetual spinning wheels of the media into overdrive.

Local and national coverage was dense, Huffington, Fox, CNN and Good Morning America, to name a few, then on to the UK, Australia and beyond. Search “Alinea Crying Baby” and you’ll get 28,000+ hits on Google today.AlineaBaby

In addition to igniting a global debate over whether kids belong at upscale restaurants, one other little gem popped up in result: @AlineaBaby. Born of (comic) necessity, @AlineaBaby has over 1,000 Twitter followers and an opinion on everything from, “what’s more annoying than me in a restaurant”, (pretty funny), to commentary on the “boring” opening ceremony of the Olympics.

It’s astounding to think, one infant could stir up such a conundrum. Will Whole Foods’ snow day snafu surpass the reach of Baby Gate? Stay tuned…

Upsell Rough Times

Winter is notoriously slow for hospitality – especially in cold and snowy markets. Find solace in the 80/20 Rule for sales: 80% of revenues come from 20% of the existing customer base. Upselling the customers you do have, can be a vital tool in rough times.

ihopInspiring Reads:

20 Upselling Tactics That Work from Restaurant News – No.14 is particularly intriguing, “Try downselling”.

How I HOP’s New Menu Design Gets Customers to Spend More from Bloomberg Businessweek – layout is king.

Upselling Techniques for Restaurants at – offers a list of numerous articles on the subject.

From the desk of  John Cecala   @BuedelFineMeats   Fan Page   Slideshare

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