By Leidra Horton
After you've obtained your start-up funds, finally comes the fun part – Figuring out your menu! Now while you probably have a general sense of what you'd like to serve (considering at this point you've already chosen your name, logo, location, and theme), don't for one minute think that finalizing your menu is going to be easy. After interviewing Jenny Foster, owner of Senorita Burrita, it became apparent that writing a menu can be easy if you follow your heart and make what you know. We even offer an easy-to-use menu designer tool that allows you to custom design a menu to fit your restaurant vision!
Jenny grew up in California, which inspired her signature mission-style burritos that she serves at her trendy restaurant, Senorita Burrita. Each giant burrito is based around her spectacular condiments and homemade salsas. Inside the burrito, you find nothing but the freshest ingredients. How can you be sure of this? Because Senorita Burrita grows their own vegetables, of course! As you can see, Jenny sets a high standard for her burritos, letting the customer know she cares about what they eat! And since growing your own vegetables is a healthy process that gets employees outside in the dirt, as well as take pride in what they are serving, growing her own vegetables seems like the logical thing to do for her restaurant.
For many people though, coming up with a menu can be challenging – ESPECIALLY if you don't have the time, resources, or space to grow your own ingredients. For Jenny, she found that the hardest part of creating the Senorita Burrita menu was not what she was going to serve, but how to take the recipes and expand them to feed a large crowd. On top of that, she had to find ways of making the food so it wouldn’t spoil right away (which is especially difficult with all fresh ingredients).
Creating your menu so it works is an ongoing learning process. It is not a perfect science at first and you can expect the menu to change as you go. Keep in mind that not every new menu item will be successful. In fact, Jenny had a few items of her own that she added to the menu and ended up crashing and burning (such as, chocolate black bean soup and “burned at the stake” hot sauce - which she states, “made grown men cry”). Luckily, our menu designer tool and menu covers give you the flexibility to create, cover and switch updated menus with ease.
Whatever you decide to serve, make sure you always keep it fresh with new twists on old favorites, or completely new menu additions at that. For Jenny and Senorita Burrita, one of the things very consistent on Senorita Burrita’s menu is the focus on sauces - a new condiment is introduced every year. And trust us, the sauces definitely make the burrito!
Be sure to check out all 4 installations of the How to Start a Restaurant series!