How to Host a Speed Dating Event at Your Restaurant

Hosting a speed dating night is an excellent opportunity for your restaurant or bar to facilitate romance while also attracting new patrons. Many businesses charge participants a registration or cover fee, which, along with food drink sales, will increase your revenue. In addition to creating a pleasant and playful environment, a successful speed dating event will strengthen your restaurant's reputation and improve the likelihood of drawing first time or repeat customers.

What is Speed Dating?

The first speed dating event took place in California in late 1998 and was inspired by a rabbi who sought to help Jewish singles meet new people and get married. Speed dating is designed to give participants the opportunity to go on mini dates with anywhere from 10 to 25 (or more) people in a single evening. Each date lasts between 3 and 10 minutes, giving the pair time to get to know each other while also keeping them from being stuck with a bad match for too long.

During the dating portion of the evening, a predetermined group of individuals will stay seated at the same tables throughout the night, while the rest of the participants will move from table to table. When the allotted time is up, the host will ring a buzzer or bell signifying that it is time to move to the next date. At the end of the event, participants write down the names of anyone they are interested in; if there is a match, the host will forward contact information to both people within a day or so.

How Should You Prepare?

With the proper tools, planning and executing a successful speed dating night can be both exciting and fulfilling. Once you have decided to host an event, you should begin advertising at least a month in advance to give potential participants plenty of time to sign up. Depending on the size and popularity of your restaurant, consider advertising online, through signage outside your restaurant, in your town's newspaper or magazine, or even on the local radio or TV station.

You could also look into partnering with an online dating site like or eHarmony, both of which frequently hold regional speed dating events for members. On the special night, it can also be helpful to have a small card with helpful "getting to know you" questions at each table to facilitate conversation between potentially bashful participants. Additionally, provide each individual with a card and writing utensil for them to note the dates they felt the most connection with and are interested in getting to know further.

Why Should You Host a Speed Dating Event?

Much like a trivia or karaoke night, hosting a speed dating event is sure to bring more customers through your doors, boost sales, and allow you to show off your restaurant as fun, welcoming, and the place to be. Whether you have 10 participants or 50, you'll also leave with a few extra dollars in your pocket through registration or cover fees. Most hosts charge between $20 and $80 per person.

Be sure to also have your bar open and stocked, as a drink or two can go a long way towards helping participants relax and open up. You can also offer appetizers and small plates for customers to munch on after the dates have finished up and everyone is mingling. All of these elements create more revenue and visibility for your establishment, which will attract new customers and increase the likelihood of your throwing another lucrative speed dating night.

When it comes to hosting the perfect speed dating night, a little preparation goes a long way. The most important thing to remember is that, ultimately, you are providing a comfortable and welcoming environment for vulnerable singles looking to meet a mate. After all, two of your participants may fall in love, live happily ever after, and, even more importantly, tell everyone they know about how wonderful your restaurant is.

Posted in: Trends | By Nora Fulmer

Get Paid for Product Reviews at WebstaurantStore

One of the best things about shopping online is the availability of customer reviews. You can read about the pros and cons of a product before you make the final decision to purchase, which gives you a better idea of what you're actually paying for. At WebstaurantStore, we value feedback from our customers, which is why we will actually pay you to submit product reviews. Read on to learn more about this awesome incentive.

Why Submit a Product Review to WebstaurantStore?

When you add a review, photo, or video to a product you’ve purchased, we add store credit to your account to be used for future orders. If you have experience with the product, why not use your experience to earn money? Check out the chart below to see how you can make up to $16.00 per product!

How Does it Work?

To start reviewing products, you have to register for an account. If you already have an account, simply log in. Next, find a product that you’ve purchased or used and click the box in the bottom right of your screen that looks like the image below. Now you can write your review and add a star rating based on your experience with the product.

What Makes a Good Review?

You don’t have to write a novel to tell other customers about a product. Simply tell us what you think. What features do you like or dislike? How do you use the product in your establishment? How does the product look and feel? Write anything you think is relevant, and after your review is approved, you’ll get paid!

Here’s an example of an excellent review from Shela V. about her stainless steel sheet pan:

I love this pan! Nice and heavy (not too heavy), so much easier to clean than my aluminum ones, which look horrible after going through the dishwasher. Nice, even cooking surface. I wish I had more of these!

Not only do reviews help other customers make informed purchasing decisions, they also give you the opportunity to tell us how we're doing. So, if you've ordered from WebstaurantStore in the past or if you're planning to place your first order, don't forget to leave your feedback and get your store credit!

Posted in: Company Information | By Sabrina Bomberger

The Difference Between Local and Organic Food

Should I buy local? Should I buy organic? What’s the difference between the two? Ever since 2010 when the National Restaurant Association listed local and organic on their “What’s Hot” food trends, it seems like these are questions a lot of people have been asking. While the two terms often get lumped together, there are differences between local and organic food.

Organic Food

Any food that has a USDA organic label, whether it’s produce, dairy, or meat, must be grown and processed according to federal guidelines. So, what exactly are these guidelines? While there are many, the main factors are soil quality, animal raising practices, pest and weed control, and the use of additives.

Fruits and vegetables can be classified as organic if they’re grown in soil that hasn’t had “applied substances”, like synthetic fertilizers and pesticides, for three years prior to harvest. But when it comes to meat and dairy products, the animals must be raised in “living conditions accommodating their natural behaviors”. This means that the animals weren’t confined to small areas and were able to freely move about. These animals also can’t be injected with antibiotics or hormones and can’t ingest food that isn’t 100% organic feed and forage. Use of genetically modified organisms (GMO’s) while organic food is being grown or handled is also prohibited.

Local Food

What makes food “locally grown” is a little bit trickier to define than organic food since local food isn’t regulated. Even though the 2008 Farm Act states that in order for food to be labeled as “local” it must be transported less than 400 miles from its origin, a 2010 study done by the U.S. Department of Agriculture found that “there is no consensus on a definition in terms of the distance between production and consumption.” However, many restauranteurs have agreed that local is anything that is grown within a 150-mile radius. This means that the produce and meat you’re buying that’s labeled “local” could have actually been grown a few states away or even produced from a factory farm.

What should you take away from this?

While food that is labeled organic is often going to be 47% more expensive than non-organic food, you and your guests can be comforted knowing that your food was raised humanely and without harmful chemical fertilizers and pesticides. However, a study did find that this doesn’t necessarily mean that organic food is more nutritious than its non-organic counterparts.

When it comes to “locally grown food”, it’s important to ask your suppliers about where the food comes from. If you see that produce is being labeled as “local” but find out that it really comes from a few states away, this most likely means that it features chemicals that help to preserve the lifespan of the product. While the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) does have a set level for pesticide use, it’s still important that you properly clean your fruits and veggies in order to remove any harmful chemicals.

Posted in: Green Products | By Emily Hepner

Coagulation to Caramelization: How Heat Affects Food

We all know that most food preparation involves heating the food, whether by roasting, baking, grilling, frying, or searing. We know that during the cooking process, red meat gets brown, liquids become solid, and flavors change. But have you ever wondered why that is? In order to help you better understand the cooking process, we’ve explained the basics of why food reacts the way it does when it’s heated up.

Proteins: Coagulation

Plant- and animal-based foods are made up of long molocules called proteins. When they’re heated, the proteins break up and lose moisture. This makes them change from a liquid (or semi-liquid) to a solid in a process called coagulation in food.

Temperature this starts at: 140 degrees F

Examples: hard boiled or fried eggs

Starches: Gelatinization

When starches are heated, they absorb liquids around them. This makes solid starchy foods softer. Starches can also be added to foods like soups and stews that are mostly liquid for thickening purposes. The whole process is known as gelatinization.

Temperature this starts at: 150 degrees F

Examples: pasta and rice getting larger and softer after boiling, flour thickening a soup

Sugars: Caramelization

Heated sugar tends to turn brown and change flavor. This not only applies to the sugar we actively add to foods, like baked goods or desserts, but to the naturally-occurring sugars in foods, as well. This process, known as caramelization, is responsible for the majority of flavors we associate with cooking. Since this happens at a higher temperature than water boiling, it also explains why foods only brown if prepared with dry heat methods.

Temperature this starts at: 338 degrees F

Examples: brown top of a creme brulee, bread turning brown as it bakes

Water: Evaporation

This is the process most people are probably familiar with from science class. When water is heated, the molecules move faster and faster until they turn into a gas (steam) and evaporate. Because water is in so many foods, this explains why foods get more dried out when they’re cooked.

Temperature this starts at: 212 degrees F

Examples: water boiling, spinach losing shape

Fats: Melt

Unlike water, fats won’t evaporate when heated, though they do melt. At room temperature they can be solid, liquid, or somewhere in between, but all of them become liquid when heat is applied to them. Because it takes much higher temperatures to burn foods that fit in this category, they’re often used as a medium to cook foods, rather than just as an ingredient.

Temperature this starts at: varies depending on fat

Examples: using butter or oil to pan-fry

As you can see, there are a lot of different scientific reactions that happen to your ingredients when you throw them on the stove or put them in the oven. One or more of these reactions can be happening at the same time in order to give you the results you want. So, the next time your food isn’t cooking perfectly, think about how you can adjust the amount heat you’re using to cook it with.

Posted in: Health & Wellness | By Alyssa Burns

How to Make a Peanut Butter Egg

Just when it seems like all the candy from Christmas and Valentine’s Day are finally done tempting you, Easter pops up out of nowhere and creates an explosion of sugary sweets filling the shelves of supermarkets and bakeries. The most notable, and coveted, sweet treat for this holiday is the mouthwatering peanut butter egg. This delicious combination of creamy peanut butter covered in a delectable chocolate coating brings together everyone’s favorite pairing of salty and sweet.

While there are an abundance of ways to make this popular candy, we’ve provided you with an instructional video and directions showing you how to make the best peanut butter egg recipe, so you can impress your guests this Easter.

Peanut Butter Egg Recipe


  1. Melt the butter in a pan or a microwave. Once the butter is completely melted, remove it from the heat and let it slightly cool.
  2. Pour the butter into a large mixing bowl.
  3. Using a wooden spoon or a spatula, stir in the marshmallow creme, creamy peanut butter, and 1/2 lb. of confectioner’s sugar. The mixture should turn into a lumpy and runny consistency. Stir in the remaining 1 lb. of confectioner’s sugar until the mixture becomes smooth and even.
  4. Scoop this mixture into an egg mold and place them on a cookie sheet lined with a silicone baking sheet.
  5. Refrigerate the eggs for about 1-2 hours, until they are firm. While the eggs are in the fridge, you’ll want to start preparing your chocolate coating.
  6. Add the chocolate chips to a large mixing bowl. Using a peeler, shave the wax over your bowl of chocolate chips.
  7. Melt the chocolate and wax in a small pan or a double boiler. Stir this mixture until it is smooth enough for dipping.
  8. Remove the peanut butter mixture from the egg mold.
  9. Dip the firmed eggs in chocolate. Place the dipped eggs back on the cookie sheet with the silicone lining and refrigerate until the coating is hard.

This recipe makes about 12-24 eggs, depending on the size of your mold.

By Emily Hepner
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