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Tom Mascardo

Do you have a passion for food and want to run a business in a fast-paced, high-pressure environment? Then opening a restaurant is perfect for you. Although it helps to know your souffles from your creme caramels, you don’t have to be a chef to open a restaurant. Many people, though, form a partnership with someone who is a chef. Opening a restaurant isn’t as simple as cooking some food and charging people to eat it though. There are hundreds of things to consider, from operating within the law to designing your menu and decorating the restaurant. Here are some major things to consider to make sure your business runs smoothly.

Location

The location of your restaurant is one of the major factors in its success. A restaurant in an area that gets a lot of foot traffic will see more customers taking a chance. Unless you can attract people on reputation alone, you need those people walking through the door on a whim. As well as looking at your location from a sales point of view, you need to make sure it’s an appropriate place for a restaurant. A restaurant in an area that’s largely residential could attract complaints about noise or smells.

Hygiene

It is extremely important that you set high standards of hygiene from the very start. The relevant authorities won’t allow you to run your business if the hygiene in your restaurant doesn’t meet the appropriate guidelines. And if you advertise your restaurant as receiving the highest grade of hygiene, people are more likely to visit. You should have a strict cleaning schedule and rules for keeping the place clean, both in the kitchen and serving areas.

Catering For Special Diets

Catering for special dietary requirements could involve a number of things. For example, clearly marking dishes that contain common allergens would be one way to cater to people with certain dietary requirements. Anything from nuts to gluten could cause an allergic reaction in a customer. If ingredients aren’t clear on the menu, then your servers should know what a dish contains, so they can answer questions. Another way to cater for special diets is making an effort to include vegetarian and vegan food on your menu. There are also religious dietary rules such as halal in Islam and kosher food in Judaism. You can use a service like Earth Kosher to certify that your restaurant is kosher.

Hiring Staff

Before opening a restaurant, familiarize yourself with the front of house and back of house roles that you need to fill. Good food needs to accompany good service, and knowing the requirements of each member of staff will help you to choose suitable people. You should have an idea of the general atmosphere and attitude you want your restaurant to have when you choose your staff. Are you relaxed and bubbly or friendly but formal? Your staff should be the same – remember that they are an extension and a representation of your restaurant.

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