In this week’s Worcester Mag, reporter Tim O’Keefe explores the restaurateurs’ reactions to Restaurant Week.
“The $20 menu affects the profit per guest, but if it draws more guests than that is what we were aiming for,” says David Lemenager, manager at 86 Winter. “We definitely saw an increase of people coming in.”
That sentiment rang true in a lot of managers’ and owners’ minds, as the overall success of Worcester Restaurant Week was not measured in profit, but in the sheer volume of new customers that came in.
“We absolutely saw an increase in people coming to the restaurant,” says Lindsay Franklin, manager at Block 5 Bistro. “Let’s say on a typical busy Wednesday night, we see about 50 people come in. During Restaurant Week we were seeing 75 to 80 people.”
But it wasn’t an unqualified success. Although Block 5 saw a large increase in the number of customers, they were a little surprised by the eventual turnout in terms of profit.
“I don’t think it evened out as much as we though it would,” says Franklin. “20 dollars is a great deal but I think the main reason for doing this is to get people to come out to our restaurant, and gain more exposure.”
“We saw a little bit of an increase in people coming to our restaurant, but not too much,” says Igantius Chang, owner of Nancy Chang Restaurant. “I think people are looking to use this deal at more expensive restaurants, where as we are moderately priced to begin with.”
Although Chang admits that there wasn’t a huge difference for his restaurant, he does think that this special event is a great opportunity for people to experience the great food that Worcester has to offer.
“Each day we probably averaged about 10 extra people that we usually have, he says. “We didn’t see much of an increase in profit, but I think that this is a good thing to do, for us and for the city of Worcester.”
For more on this story, check out this week’s Worcester Mag.