However much or little you happen to enjoy eating out, or however much you get to actually do it, you have to agree that there are few things better than a really impressive restaurant. But often it is not all that easy to actually put your finger on why a restaurant is good or bad, or what it actually tends to be that makes one successful or not. Understanding these things can however be useful for many people for a variety of reasons. If you are thinking about running a restaurant of your own, it is obviously very handy to have a strong sense of what the best restaurants tend to do well and what they avoid doing at all. And if you are just a keen punter, you will find that this kind of knowledge helps you in your own critical evaluation of such establishments, and could perhaps even assist you in better choosing your place to eat in the future. In this post, we’ll look at what the best restaurants have in common, so that such decisions and situations can be considerably easier for you.
Although not all restaurants have a very strong or particularly bold and over-the-top theme, the truth is that a lot of the most successful ones do at least have a kind of general style which you might call a theme. Thematic restaurants can sometimes also be a little cliche, of course, and it can be a difficult matter to get it right and at the appropriate level. But you know just from walking into a place whether or not this is being approached in the right way, and it is something that works much more on an instinctive understanding than anything else. Having a theme can be a powerful way of drawing many elements together, and when it’s done well it can even elevate the experience of eating to somewhere else entirely. Themes must be adhered to strongly without deviation, otherwise the spell is cast – but as long as this is done, it is one of the best ways to ensure that the restaurant is enjoyed as thoroughly as one would hope.
What every customer wants is for the staff at the restaurant in question to be as professional as is necessary, without of course necessarily subjugating any kind of sense of friendliness. Bear in mind the difference there, as formality and professionalism are not the same thing, and you can have an informal dining experience which is nonetheless marked by the utmost professionalism. This, as with the theme of a place, is something that you get a sense of the moment you walk into a restaurant, and that is exactly why it is so important for restaurant owners to focus on it strongly and at all times. A professional restaurant staff will wait on the customers in the appropriate manner for the restaurant style in question, with friendliness and intrigue, and will make it clear that they are there to serve respectfully. What they wear will also help achieve this kind of professional look, with even the outfits of the kitchen staff making a difference, rare as it is to see them in most places. For restaurant owners, this is a simple case of buying wholesale aprons so that everyone is in loos uniform, and ensuring that everybody is smart and presentable. This adds a great deal to anybody’s experience of a restaurant, and is not easily overlooked.
It’s no great surprise that the menu should be a particularly important part of the whole, and yet it is something that is of course very difficult indeed to get quite right. Running a restaurant can often feel like a constant attempt to try and create the perfect menu, and this of course is never quite possible to do entirely. But there are elements to a menu which should be aimed for, and which customers will – either consciously or unconsciously – expect to see when they look at the menu each time. One of the true hallmarks of a good menu is that it displays a high level of creativity, a quality which can often seem lacking in many eateries today. If a menu is creative, it might not necessarily mean it is delicious, but it does at least indicate that a great deal of care and effort has gone into it, which can only ever be a good sign. Besides, we all know how much more enjoyable it is to sit down at a table and see a menu full of exotic and wild, amazing things we might never have considered trying before. Creativity goes a long way towards impressing the diners.
Really good restaurant owners have an intuitive understanding that the restaurant experience is about so much more than just food, and the better that this is known and displayed, the better the entire experience will be. Ironically, this is going to ensure that the food itself does taste better as well. Achieving a good atmosphere relies upon many things, and the truth is that some of those factors are entirely or partially outside of the restaurant’s control. Of course, that is because the guests and diners influence atmosphere as much as anything else, but part of the challenge of running a restaurant is therefore to try and master things much more successful anyway, in order to ensure that the overall experience is a positive one. Everything from the layout of the tables and chairs to the use of lighting can be used to alter and improve atmosphere, and it is something that can take a long time to perfect. However, it is worth doing so, for it’s often the difference between an okay restaurant and a fantastic one.
Clearly, it is always going to be difficult for any restaurant owner to appreciate how much is involved here, and it will always take time to perfect all this. But with the right attitude and approach, more restaurant can easily become better, improving the dining experience for people everywhere.
**This is a collaborative post**