It’s hard to believe that the official first day of summer just passed. (Wasn’t it just February, like … yesterday?) With summer in full swing, non-commercial foodservice operators will benefit from offering limited-time menu items and promoting intriguing activities to draw customers in over the next few months. Make your menu stand out with some fresh additions that are sure to entice customers and keep your bottom line HOT all summer long.
Summer just isn’t the same without refreshing, thirst-quenching beverages that cool you down when it’s hot and humid.
- One of the many food trends predicted for 2017 were mocktails and if you haven’t offered them yet, now is the time. Sparkling drinks like this sparkling cranberry-lime mocktail and sparkling raspberry-pear mocktail satisfy customers who crave the bubbly but don’t want to sip the same-old, everyday soda.
- There are few things – if any – more refreshing than an ice-cold lemonade in July. Try adding pineapple lemonade or raspberry peach lemonade to your beverage menu, and don’t forget the umbrella straw!
Are there certain foods or flavors you remember from childhood that bring back a welcomed sense of nostalgia when you think about tasting them again? Kid-friendly foods have slowly been making their way onto non-commercial foodservice menus as snacks, appetizers, and desserts.
- Mac and cheese as a finger food? Yes, please! Not only will this appeal to a younger crowd, but senior living communities are seeing a growing popularity of finger foods. Breaded and fried, it’s a convenient way to offer a nostalgic classic.
- For dessert, try these PB&J cupcakes to bring back a well-known classic in a tasty, new way.
- Some other nostalgic flavors to add to your menu? Cotton candy, s’mores, and butterscotch. Yum!
Cooking with Customers
What better way to show current and potential customers how delicious your food is than to prepare it right alongside them? Customers can ask the chef questions about the food, like preparation methods and sourcing information, and experience your unique brand of hospitality first-hand.
This event is also a great opportunity to drive business with a referral program. Ask customers to bring a friend to your event. When they place their first order, reward your referring customer with 10% off their next order or a free appetizer for their next catering event.
Taste buds and flavor profiles are ever-evolving, so operators need to recognize and cater to changing palates. Offering food stations:
- Allows customers only to choose what they want to eat, leaving them 100% satisfied
- Saves staff time and energy from preparing custom event orders and having order mishaps
- Decreases the amount of food waste created which cuts costs and promotes sustainability
Update Your Online Menu with CaterTrax
Summer is meant to be fun and exciting, and updating your menu with popular summer menu trends is a great way to mix things up for customers and drive new business. Our Menu Services Team is ready to help with any menu updates you need this summer, so simply submit a ticket detailing your request and attach any supporting documents, if applicable.
If you’re not yet a CaterTrax client but would like more information on getting started with an online ordering platform, book a demo to see how CaterTrax will help streamline your foodservice operation. If you have any questions, please comment below.