Front Of The House

2009 August: Hang to Dry

March 11, 2013

Laundry: Hang to Dry

For some pizza restaurant operators — such as those who use front and center items like table linens or who have extremely high-volume locations — whether or not to do the laundry in-house or use a laundry service is a no-brainer. In these instances the vote comes down squarely in favor of turning this aspect… Read More

Photo by Josh Keown

February 28, 2013

Clean Sweep

Customers are restaurants’ biggest allies and their harshest critics. They are not shy about expressing their joy, concern or displeasure with an eating establishment. The wilting plant in the corner, the dust on the ceiling fan or the empty paper towel bins in the bathroom are details easily overlooked by operators and staff. But customers… Read More

2009 February: Boffo Buffets

February 24, 2013

Buffets can bring in big business when done right

When CiCi’s Pizza Buffet opened its doors 27 years ago, the concept of an array of pizzas offered all at once and not custom-built seemed novel and a bit risky. “It was not something that was normally done,” says CiCi’s President Craig Moore. Now, however, pizza buffets have become commonplace across the country and while… Read More

2010 April: This Little Light of Mine

February 1, 2013

2010 April: This Little Light of Mine

Dark dining, a trend where you eat in complete darkness, was introduced both in the United States and abroad about three years ago, but it never caught on. That’s because the right lighting enhances the dining experience, helps the staff, creates a sense of security, makes the pizza and other dishes look their best and… Read More

Photos by Josh Keown

January 1, 2013

On Ice: Ice machine cleanliness

When restaurants get lax on ice machine cleaning, the results can be chilling — from a failed health inspection to gross news headlines about black mold clogging an ice machine at a local eatery to, in the worse-case scenario, sick customers. Experts say that’s because ice machines provide an ideal environment for microbes to flourish…. Read More

2012 December: Gluten-Free: The Front of the House is Key

December 3, 2012

2012 December: Gluten-Free: The Front of the House is Key

As someone with celiac disease, I have certain red flags that I always look for when I dine out. And it all begins with the front of the house. Restaurants across the U.S. are introducing gluten-free options at a rapid pace. This new menu trend is especially strong among pizza parlors, which are ordering gluten-free… Read More

2012 December: Pizza Presentation

December 1, 2012

Pizza Presentation

When it comes to tableside pizza presentation, it’s easy to leave it and forget it. But serving pizza is an opportunity to add drama and a hands-on personal touch to the dining experience. Presentation styles and pizza stands vary widely: from the typical C-shaped riser, to the chrome pedestal, to double-decker stands, to custom built… Read More

2012 November: The Flipside

October 23, 2012

Customer Complaints: The Flipside

“Just say, ‘Yes,’” is the advice veteran pizzeria operator Jeff Cohen lends to handling customer complaints. Cohen, who opened Pizza Loft in Davie, Florida in 1975, applies a giving mentality to his shop. In fact, when customers walk in, they pass by a prominent sign at the front door reading, “Customer service is what we… Read More

October 4, 2012

Carpet Care

A solid carpet care plan is essential, experts say, to keeping carpet looking good, particularly in a busy restaurant setting. There is guidance out there to help you find the right equipment and people. The Carpet and Rug Institute and the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration maintain databases of experts and equipment that can… Read More

September 20, 2012

Waiting Area

I’m opening my first pizzeria and am building a freestanding unit. My question is: is it worth the extra construction expense to add a lobby/waiting area? I’m going to have 32 four-top tables and eight six-person booths. With a restaurant that size, it would be foolish not to include at least a small waiting area. You… Read More

Restaurant Customer Service is Critical for Success

When a customer first walks through you door, they make a quick assessment of their surroundings, including your floor plan and restaurant design. After that, it’s up to your employees to get them to come back. Many customers admit poor service will keep them from returning to a restaurant despite enjoying its food. Staff training and management are critical for success. Front-of-the-house employees should look –– and act –– the important part of host in a dining room, and proper training is the key to making that happen.

Explore ways to make your front of house operation more effective and profitable.

 

Restaurant Design and Floor Plans Set the Tone of Your Business

How well does your restaurant design fit with your concept? Not only does décor play a part in creating your brand but also the type of service you offer. Dine-in, counter service, delivery and carryout can all play a part in creating customers’ opinions of a restaurant’s business. If a restaurateur is ready for a rebranding, renovation and remodeling floor plans may create fresh eye appeal and breathe new life into an ailing concept.

Discover restaurant design trends and advice in the Front of the House at Pizza Today.