A successful foodie group event is achieved when :
- The group has a chance to try something extraordinary, more extensive or unique than an ordinary dining experience at a location.
- A restaurant has the opportunity to host a large group of eager food-ies and potential loyal customers while at the same time increasing that week's business.
- a meal/event gets added to the food-group website (and simultaneously as a yelp review).
Here's how it works:
- First contact is made to determine if a restaurant is appropriate and/or interested in hosting our group which numbers between 17 and 37 people, averaging around 23. If a restaurant is not interested, no problem. It just means I'll likely have to just try the place out on my own, because at this point I've determined that I'd like to eat at your restaurant, regardless. Restaurants are always encouraged to contact mike: firstname.lastname@example.org if they're interested in our group.
- Dates & times are determined: a target date and time are mutually decided on. If the current season is not best, we're more than open to planning future events ahead of time.
- The menu is developed. The menu should be determined by the restaurant, keeping in mind it needs to cost a flat fee per person to avoid chaos at the end of the meal. Menus can be anything; especially an assortment of items that impresses the need for members of the group to return on their own after this meal. Most often, restaurants find it in their interest to get the group to try as much of the kitchen's strengths as possible. Some previous successful menues are made of multiple course offerings which have 1 to 3 choices per course. Having a vegetarian option(s) in each course is encouraged since a portion of our group is determined to deprive themselves of the glory of meat, for some reason. Vegetarians that are active members are often the most consistent and enthusiastic food-ies. If you do not have vegetarian items on your menu, there's still a lot of interested food-ies that would likely be interested, so don't fret. If you have any famous staples or offer unique specialties and/or are open to offering an extensive tasting menu (some have given us 5+ courses) to add to the experience, the event will become more attractive to the group and our numbers will likely be larger. For example, at Patou, we were offered 5 courses with wine pairing and introduction to the menu and wines by the chef, Patrice Rames as well as a representative from his wine supplier. Steven Cook offered us an extensive version of the "Mesibah" at Zahav. Also, Cochon, a small byob with limited space hosted us on a Sunday, which they're normally closed for, and offered us a special selection of more adventurous menu items. All of these were wonderful experiences for both the restaurant and the group.
- The price is determined by the restaurant. A flat fee is the only option that works for a group like this. The restaurant needs to calculate a price that would be satisfactory for their goals for this meal. We're not a discount club and don't expect a restaurant to lose money. If anything we don't want to burden restaurants, but celebrate them. Price and unique experience offered often will have an impact on the numbers of participants. If a restaurant has a pay-bar, food-ie members are asked to pay at the bar, individually, so the meal's price is consistent and easy to calculate at the end of the meal. Often restaurants get a big pile of cash from us.
- The size of the group can be open or predetermined. Some restaurants have limited seating space and therefore the invitation can be set to restrict the number to those who first respond to the evite I send out. Planning to host us on an evening a restaurant is normally closed offers smaller dining rooms an opportunity to avoid overwhelming regular customers. Larger venues often encourage as large a group as possible. Our largest group, so far, was at Bistro St. Tropaz, where we numbered 37 food-ies. There we had our own dining room and bar. If a restaurant has any contacts, patrons or friends that would be interested in joining our group for the planned meal, they are welcome to supply their contact info or email addresses.
- The invite to the event meal is through an online evite. This describes the menu and price and gives me and the restaurant a chance to see the responses as they accumulate.
Email me to arrange it: email@example.com