Over 150 places participate in Long Island Restaurant Weeks 3-course meal. Higher end restaurants take part in this ritual every year. The purpose behind restaurant week is to allow customers to experience ones food service in hopes of seeing them again.
Each restaurant makes up their own 3-course meal for a universal price of $27.95. This includes an appetizer, entree and a dessert; all other desires are separate such as soft drinks, alcohol, and coffee. This idea has been very appealing to the people who do not have the money to go out and dine at higher priced places.
The restaurants that participate may have a guest check average as high as $130 for just two people on a regular night. Pace’s Steakhouse in particular, is an A La Carte style of dining; each entree is sold separately thus allowing the customer to use which ever salad or side they would prefer. Yet with restaurant week side dishes are included, as well as an appetizer, soup, or salad, an entree selection as well as dessert. This is done to allow the customer to get an overall general tasting of what the restaurant offers.
“This week we haven’t seen our regulars too much, there was a lot of new faces. With all the newcomers filling up the dining room and bar we hope to expand our clientele”, said Jessica Faro, a server at Pace’s Steakhouse.
As a result of the prix fixed menu the volume of customers has gone up for the week not just here but at many others too. Customers who usually would not give a visit now get a chance to experience fine dining.
“Between the food, service, and ambiance we will definitely be paying them another visit”, said Jennifer Saliba, a first time customer of Pace’s Steakhouse.
Restaurant Week is very beneficial to both the customer and restaurant participant, yet it can work against places whom are not and cannot take part- eateries like Friendly’s.
“Our sales this week have gone down 25%, while last week we were up 20%.”, says an anonymous employee of Friendly’s.
Another employee of Friendly’s states, “Why would someone want to come here and spend money when they can get better quality food for the same price somewhere else.”
Clearly it has been a pretty rough week for non participants. The servers of these types of dining must be struggling to get to work this week. From the opposite end of the results we see that many Long Islanders have taken advantage of these prix fixed menus.
With the prices of fine dining so affordable, everyone is running towards them. Many restaurants are even thinking about extending Restaurant Week another seven days, so keep an ear out. For a list of participating locations and menus go to www.longislandrestaurantweek.com.