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Restaurant Menu Covers by The Menu Shoppe

Updated on February 22, 2016

Quality Menu Covers from The Menu Shoppe

The Menu Shoppe manufactures a complete selection of quality menu covers for restaurants, restaurant table tents , wine list covers, and other table top items for restaurants, cafes, country clubs, casinos as well as other on premise food and beverage service providers.

Among other items, we offer, clear plastic covers, padded menu covers and leatherette restaurant menu covers. Our sewn edge clear plastic menu covers are in stock, ready for next day shipping. We can manufacture padded and leatherette menu covers in five working days from the time we have your approval of art.

Our leather menu covers are finished with a formulation of dyes that give our covers extreme durability without sacrificing aesthetics.

Need to promote desserts, specialty drinks or featured entrees? Our table tents and table stands make it possible. We offer several styles of tents in both wood and acrylic, all designed to help you advertise your products and services.

Our table stands and table numbers are chrome plated steel stands with weighted bases.

Choosing The Right Menu Cover - Which Menu Cover is Right for Me?

Menu Covers

Your menu is one of the first things that will be presented to your customers and like it or not the appearance and condition of your menu is going to suggest to your customers a lot about you and your restaurant.

Some thought and care should be put into the selection of type of menu that you offer.

Cafe Style Menu Covers with clear plastic sleeves can protect your printed menu paper and keep them clean. They also tend to present an informal, low key appearance which might suggest modestly priced items inside.

Book Style Menu Covers, with hard or padded menu covers, and diagonal, photo album corners on the inside, might make a more up-scale presentation, especially if they're made out of some interesting looking material like Leather Menu Covers , wood menu covers or menu covers made of some Man-Made Material with some unique looking pattern or shape.

Your menu covers don't have to be expensive, but they should show that you've put some thought into their appearance, just as you've put some thought into the preparation of the items that appear on your menu.

#1 in a series of comments and suggestions by Mark R. Strange

Why buy Sewn Edge Cafe Style Menu Covers from The Menu Shoppe? - Our Guaranteed Quality

While it is true that no two restaurants use or treat menu covers the same way, we've had enough experience manufacturing menu covers to be able to make the claim that our sewn edge menu covers, with polished, clear panels and supported vinyl binding, will last two years with normal usage. Our clear panels won't crack or wrinkle. Our binding won't wear so that the backing starts to show through. Our corners won't fall off.

If they do, return the menu covers to us and we'll replace them at a pro-rated cost, based on our twenty-four month anticipated life span. (see below for details)

We make this claim because we know the level of quality of raw materials and workmanship that we've put into these menu covers. We can't expect you to buy our products unless you're confident you're getting your money's worth.

Here's what you're buying

First, we use 10 gauge, menu grade, crystal clear vinyl. Other manufacturers boast that they use 'graphic arts grade' vinyl . . . which is the perfect choice if you want to print on the clear vinyl. Graphic arts grade vinyl has a coating that makes it easier for print shops to silk screen or offset print on the vinyl. It's not particularly clear and it's not particularly scratch resistant. Menu grade vinyl was made for use on menu covers and other types of document holders that have to stand up to heavy usage without cracking, warping or scratching while maintaining a high level of see-through clarity.

We fold under the edge of our binding. This creates a finished edge to the binding and prevents dirt and grease from getting underneath. We then sew the binding to the edges of the clear menu panels with a DOUBLE ROW of stitches.

What's the big deal about a double row of stitches? It's going to make your menu covers last twice as long!

Vinyl expands and contracts with heat and cold . . . not much, maybe only a few thousandths of an inch at a time, but enough. The expansion puts pressure on the threads holding the binding and the threads start to cut into the vinyl. Twice the number of stitches means half the pressure on any stitch and despite the claims by other manufacturers, this will not perforate the menu panels, not if we use teflon coated needles (at four times the cost of steel needles) and run our sewing machines at 2/3 speed so the needles won't overheat.

Our metal corner tabs are designed to stay on:

Whether you choose our square plain metal tabs, or our smaller, rounded tabs with scrollwork your corners will stay on for the life of your menu jacket. We've added small fish-hook like barbs to the edges of our tabs. Special dies fitted to our hydraulic presses squeeze the tabs onto the menu covers ONLY at the barbed locations. Your metal corner tabs are on to stay.

Does all this extra work and material cost more? Yes. Is it worth the extra cost? That's for you to judge. We're proud of our work and we're proud of our products, that's why we offer this guarantee: If your menu covers only last a year, or half of what we claim they should last, we'll replace them at half price. If they last one a a half years, or 3/4s of their life expectancy, we'll replace them at 3/4 price, etc. etc. Naturally, menu covers that are worn or broken due to abuse are not covered by this offer. Check the www for another guarantee to match ours.

Sewn Edge Menu Covers with Clear Panels - Deluxe Cafe Style Menu Covers

We offer sewn edge cafe style restaurant menu covers with:

Your choice of 10 GAUGE, semi-rigid, scratch resistant, clear pvc vinyl panels, with either polished or non-glare matte finish.

We use menu grade clear vinyl which will not crack, yellow or lift laser print from your restaurant menus.

Choose from either leatherette embossed vinyl binding with scrim backing or thicker, woven fabric binding, each available in a variety of colors. The edges of either binding material is folded under to make a finished edge, then DOUBLE ROW stitched to the clear menu panels.

But most important, our restaurant menu covers will last longer than any others being offered on web and we back up that claim with our guarantee.

Clear Spiral Bound Menu Covers - for menus with extensive selections

Do you have a large menu with tons of variety? Finding a menu cover that will accommodate your choices isn't always the easiest task. With these clear, spiral bound menu covers from The Menu Shoppe, you can display all your items at an extremely reasonable price point. Choose from 4 views up to 24 views. The sky is the limit with these menu covers. Get yours at our website today!

Casebound Menu Covers - Fine Dining Menu Covers

In constructing our Casebound Menu Covers, extra strong bookbinders' cloth has been turned and wrapped around rigid board. (Foam Padding Optional)

We use only book cloth which has been rated as having 'high tear' properties, which means your covers will last much longer than less expensive covers made from thinner, cheaper, material.

Casebound menu covers are available in three distinct kinds of material:

Leatherette or imitation leather: a semi-gloss man-made material, top printed and embossed to simulate genuine top grain cowhide.

Brushed Metallic: the same, durable book covering material with a shiny, metallic textured finish.

Linen: a dull coated, moisture resistant, latex saturated cloth with a nylon base construction that provides the high tear and high strength properties that you expect for bookbinder's cloth.

Expect two to three years' usage from any of these covers.

Photo album style corners have been affixed to the inside lining to hold your single sheet menus. The result is a rugged menu, suitable in appearance for any dining room and which can be kept clean with a damp cloth.

Your name, crest or logotype can be foil stamped on front cover in gold, silver, copper, black or white.

Dynasty Style Menu Covers - Hard Bound Menu Covers with Clear Inside Pockets

In our Dynasty Menu Covers, expanded, supported vinyl is turned and stitched over hard, tough binders board with matching leatherette lining inside to produce a firm, durable cover.

Foam padding is optional.

Clear vinyl pockets are stitched to inside lining of covers. Books are finished with your choice of metal corners.

Additional clear pockets are permanently sewn into center seam.

Each page has binding on all edges to compliment color of outside of book and has matching metal corners as outside cover of book.

Single books load from the top. Pages for all other configurations load from openings along center fold.

Your logo can be foil stamped and debossed on the back of the single menu holders and on the front cover of the other configurations of this style cover.

NEW Server Pad Holders - Perfect to keep your FOH staff organized.

Server Pad Holders
Server Pad Holders

The Menu Shoppe now has a selection of Server Pad Holders for your front of the house staff. These holders will help keep them organized, while also cutting down on the mistakes. Choose from our Waiter Caddy styles with a carefully organized system of interior pockets to help your staff keep everything where it should be. Or if you already have casebound menu covers, use our casebound server pad holders to create the perfect complimentary piece for your staff. Check out our website today to see these great pieces.

The "NEW" Menu Show Off Card Holders - LOW PRICE

Our "NEW" Menu Show Off Card Holders is yet another great way to display your featured desserts, appetizers, beverages or anything else that will bring in $$$, right on your dining room table tops, bar or counter. If you're looking for the same quality as The Menu Roll(TM), but at a budget price, then The Menu Show Off is for you!

Our patented, one piece construction makes it easy to add and remove pockets. Stands are 10.5 in. in height with a solid hardwood base and can hold up to twenty clear, plastic sleeves with no problem.

The Solid Hardwood Base is available in Black of Brown Oak and has a small 4 in. x 4 in. footprint and is 0.75 in. thick to give it enough heft to prevent accidental tipping.

Our stand is made of specially formulated acrylic and while we don't recommend it as a steady practice, our test results have shown that the stand will bounce and not chip or crack when dropped onto a concrete floor from table height.

Menu Show Off Instructional Video - How to easily add pockets to Show Off Stands

Watch this instructional video on how to add vinyl pockets to your Menu Show Off Stands with ease. No more separate parts, just one easy step.

LED Specials Board - A Great New Way to Promote Your Products

LED Specials Board
LED Specials Board

Flashing LED Specials Boards allow you to create a self-illuminating promotion of your featured items in a variety of colors anywhere you would like.

Hang in the dining area to display specials, the daily catch, or Soup du Jour.

Place in the bar area for a listing of Happy Hour and Drink Specials.

Or, try one of our Easel Stands and display at the entrance for lunch or dinner promotions.

Use our Fluorescent Liquid Chalk Markers for Brilliant, Color Changing displays, then simply wipe away with a wet towel when you are ready for a change!

A-Frame Table Tents - Leatherette, Vinyl and Cafe-Style A-Frame Tents

Promote your specials on your dining room tables, bar, counter tops and all your other high visibility areas with any of our selection of A-Frame Table Tent Card Holders.

A-Frame Tents display 2 cards in several different sizes.

Three Sided Tent displays 3 cards measuring 4 in. wide x 6 in. tall, or 5 in. wide x 7 in. tall.

3 Sided Leatherette Table Tents - Display Even More Right At The Table

Promote even more drinks and specials with our NEW 3 Sided Table Tent.

Made from Black Leatherette, this Triangular Table Tent will hold 3 cards measuring 4 in. x 6 in. of 5 in. x 7 in. using Black Picture Frame corners.

Magnetic side panels allows this item to lay flat for convenient storage.

4 in. x 6 in. table tents in stock for quick shipping.

5 in. x 7 in. table tents are made to order.

A Fun, Easy, Clean, and Affordable Way to Present Your Menu Items - Bread Baskets, Sandwich Baskets, Fry Holders, Taco Holders and More!!

The Menu Shoppe now presents a variety of Chrome and Stainless Steel Bread Baskets, Sandwich Baskets, Taco Holders and More that will help you present your food in an interesting way, while the durability and life of the products will save you money over less expensive plastic options.

You can use our Bread and Sandwich Baskets to present a variety of menu items to your diners. They are far more classy and durable than plastic baskets and expensive serving dishes, use these baskets for anything from bread and appetizers, to beignets.

Our Oval Baskets are available in either Stainless Steel, Chrome, or Black Powder Coated, to fit any style or décor. They are also available in Black Vinyl Coated, great for pool or outdoor areas.

Present French Fries, Hush Puppies, Fried Okra and other items in an interesting and eye-catching way. Avoids overcrowded plating while adding a bit of whimsy to your meal service.

Available in Chrome as well as Black Powder Coated.

Keep tacos, pitas, and wraps neat and organized with our stainless steel taco holders. Holds from one to five tacos or pitas without making a mess of the remaining items on the plate. Perfect for fish tacos by the beach.

We also have several sizes of food rings to enhance your presentation and give your diners a unique experience.

Flip Stand Card Holders - Display Multiple Specials

How do I get my specials and drinks in front of the customer without additional menu covers or menu pages?

Wooden and Acrylic Flip Stand Menu Card Holders display multiple menu or special promotion cards.

Metal wire sculpture menu holders add a whimsical look to your table top and are heavy enough for outdoor and poolside use.

Uniforms and Chef's Clothing - A Full Line of Foodservice and Hospitality Uniforms

Chefs Uniforms
Chefs Uniforms

Looking for Chefs apparel for your back of the house staff? We have them. Looking for server uniforms and aprons? We have them too!!

Our Chefs Apparel uses a Poly-Cotton blend that will give your chef the comfort and breathability of cotton in his or her hot kitchen and the strength of polyester to stand up to repeated washings, a feature that owners are looking for.

Our Server, Bar and Kitchen Aprons are the strongest you’ll find. We use FULL LENGTH ties that will not break, unlike many competitors who simply sew them at the end of the aprons.

We use only quality materials and construction on all of our products to give you a durable, comfortable, and affordable, product that will give you long wear through repeated washings.

Genuine Leather Menu Covers - Looking to really WOW your guests??

When you are really looking to distinguish your restaurant as a cut above the rest, Genuine Leather Menu Covers give the right impression from the moment the guest sits down.

Made from the finest quality genuine, tanned and cured leather, the case made menu covers will last and last while maintaining the soft, supple feel of cowhide throughout its life. Let your guests know that they are really in for something special, and then back it up with your menu items.

Visit www.menushoppe.com today and have us make the perfect presentation piece for your establishment.

Caribe Basketweave Menu Covers - A New Way to Present Your Fare

These Caribe Basketweave Menu Covers from The Menu Shoppe, offer a unique texture and appearance that immediately shows the guest upon presentation that they are in for a new and exciting experience. Then let your food back up their expectations and you have a guest that can't wait to return, which is really the point.

A menu cover won't be the end of your business if not done right, but when done splendidly, it transforms a normal dining experience into something else entirely. A vacation from work, from cooking, from home, from life, and you are the host.

Dining out isn't just about being fed, it's about the experience.

Tips When Opening A Restaurant

What do I do?

More about restaurant menus

Ok, you signed a lease a month or so ago, your kitchen equipment is ‘mostly’ in, renovations to the dining area and front signage are ‘almost’ complete, your dishes, glassware and cutlery are due in ‘any day’ and you’ve scheduled a grand opening for two weeks . . . and somebody just asked “don’t we need menus?”

Not to worry. Remember one basic truth. Nobody ever walked out of a restaurant because they didn’t like the appearance of the menu and nobody ever said “let’s go to so-and-so’s restaurant, they’ve got a terrific looking menu.”

Here’s another basic truth: your menus can be the best salespersons you have and they won’t cost you any payroll taxes.

First step is to write the menu, the items and their descriptions. This should be a compromise between what you think your future patrons would like to see on the menu and what your kitchen can efficiently prepare. When in doubt, put fewer items on the menu that you can prepare well, rather than many items that can jam up your kitchen flow. You can always add more items later.

Organize the menu, the traditional headings are Appetizers, Salads, Pasta, Entrees, Specialties, Sides and Desserts, but there’s no hard and fast rule. Make a separate section for your ‘franchise’ items, the dishes for which you want to be known. There are plenty of free templates on the web that will give you ideas (or that you can copy).

Start with a low profile. Instead of a Grand Opening, just open the door when you’re ready, pick up a flashing “Now Open” sign at your local sign shop and try a week of serving real customers just to see how it goes. Think of it as beta testing your staff.

Don’t be embarrassed to set up your menus on your computer and print them on your inkjet printer. If it’s too much work, talk to your local printer or quick copy center. If you need a cover or something to hold all your menu pages use an inexpensive menu cover Cafe Style Menu Covers until you’re reasonably comfortable you’ve got the right combination of items on your menu.

#2 in a series of comments and suggestions by Mark R. Strange

Marketing Ideas for Restaurateurs

More about restaurant menus

Deciding on the content and appearance of your restaurants menus can be a challenging and stressful procedure. Here are a few ideas to help make the process easier.

Limit your items to those that you know, or suspect will be popular with your customers. When in doubt, see what your competition is doing. "Borrow" ideas as much as possible, it's a lot easier than coming up with new and creative ones that may or may not work and don't limit your research to other restaurants in your area. Check out your local "busy" supermarkets for marketing ideas.

When you think about it, restaurants offer food and beverages for on-premise consumption, supermarkets offer the same products for off-premise consumption. Supermarkets have attractive food containers (boxes, cans or bottles) showing pictures of the product inside or their corporate identity.

Your menu should have an attractive appearance with inviting descriptions of the products you offer. If you don't want to go through the expense of color printing, check out pre-printed menu paper with attractive borders in colors that fit your restaurant's décor.

Supermarkets show what's on sale by hanging little tags from the shelves or handing out flyers when customers enter the store.

Think about a special section on your menu for "chef's specials" with items that change daily or weekly, with a lobby sign that greets your customers and announces what your chef has prepared specially for that day.

Think about displaying a selection of desserts in the entrance way. You'll get a lot more takers for desserts if you plant the idea when they're hungry and not ask them after they've had a full meal.

#3 in a series of comments and suggestions by Mark R. Strange

Dessert Marketing 101

Marketing Tips for Restaurants

Just Desserts

Some centuries ago, when I was eight or ten years old, I remember a family ritual of going to my grandparents' house for Friday night dinner. Grandma would always have a freshly baked pie ready for dessert and my strongest memory was opening the door and getting that first whiff of apple or peach or blueberry or cherry or, on really rare occasions, rhubarb.

Somehow on Fridays I had no problems finishing my vegetables.

How much would your customers appetites improve if grandma was in your kitchen and aromas of freshly baked breads or pastries managed to find their way to your front door.

I'm not suggesting get Grandma out of retirement and back behind the stove, but I am suggesting you appeal to your customers' sense of smell as well as sight when promoting your offerings. An occasional waft of fresh bread or pastries coming from your kitchen couldn't hurt sales. If that's impractical put your desserts on display.

The time to push desserts is not when your diners have just finished a full meal and your server asks: "Can I interest anyone in dessert?" The time to push desserts is when your customers first walk in the door.

Display desserts when your customers first walk in. Show them what's in store for them at the end of their meal. If this is not practical, slide a dessert list into your regular menu, or select a menu that holds a full or partial dessert list that diners will see when the first open their menus.

Try offering main courses in two sizes: ¾ size and full size, with ¾ size for those diners who "want to leave room for dessert". This is something your server could explain when he announces the specials. If you make the price difference of the entrée half the price of the dessert, you're still raising your average check . . . and you can work out your own portion sizes OR . . . offer desserts in two sizes, one portion, regular size and one porton split onto two plates with two spoons/forks for sharing . . . show it on your menu as "half the calories."

And if all of the above will get in the way of your busy operation, at least have your server bring around a platter of your non-refrigerated dessert selection with the questions" "which dessert can I offer you?" instead of "anyone leave room for dessert."

#4 in a series of comments and suggestions by Mark R. Strange

Marketing Your Restaurant

Have an Identity

Who am I?

If you had no more than eight or ten words to describe your restaurant, to give your guests a reason to patronize your restaurant, what would those words be?

Dining for special occasions?

A restaurant that the whole family can enjoy?

A friendly place to meet your friends?

Honest food and honest prices?

Whatever your message, your menu should help get that message across and the first thing that they’ll notice is the menu that will be put into their hands as soon as they’re seated..

Like a flysheet of a book, your menu cover should give a hint of what’s inside and make the reader want to open the book and read what’s inside.

You’ve got a wide selection of styles of menus and covers from which to choose.

Start with the cover. What’s the first thing you want your patrons to see? The two most popular choices are a picture or message about your restaurant, printed in multi colors with the name of your restaurant in big letters on the front page of your restaurant menu covers . . . or a more formal look of leather or imitation leather with your name or logo printed or foil stamped in gold on the front panel of your menu covers.

Formal covers generally tend to lead the reader to think that the items inside are more carefully prepared than the average chain ‘family style’ restaurants, like Chili’s or Olive Garden, and these styles of covers may tend to cost more than a simple printed and laminated menu . . . but maybe that’s the demographic you’re looking for.

Whatever image you’ve selected for your restaurant, follow through on the menu and tableware.

Dining for special occasions . . . mood lighting, relatively few items on the menu, but each well prepared, maybe a few specials that your serving staff can describe with enough restrained panache to make your diners feel that whatever is being described was made especially for them.

Restaurant for the whole family? Your menu may need to display a greater variety of simpler dishes, you’re probably going to get parties of four or more . . . with and without children. Make sure the lighting in your dining room is bright enough and the type face you select for the menu is big enough for senior citizens to read easily and that there’s room between tables for the occasional booster seat.

#5 in a series of comments and suggestions by Mark R. Strange

Opening a Restaurant?

Plan Accordingly

You’ve Got to Have a Plan

Before you sign a lease or lay down the concrete pad for your new restaurant, you need a plan. The better the plan, the greater your chance for success.

What kind of restaurant do you want to open and what motivation will people have to come? What’s going to make you different from all the other restaurants, with established reputations in the neighborhood.

Like any successful business, you should open something that you will enjoy owning and operating. If you’re just doing for the money, find another interest. Running a restaurant is just too difficult.

Start with location. Are you in a shopping mall or theatre complex? On some busy intersection with plenty of potential street business walking by. Across the street from a large condo? Or maybe you’re out in the country, with a scenic view of some body of water. Possibly a restaurant where singles will want to gather on the way home from work. Happy Hour/sports bar leads into dinner. Definitely more beer sales than wine.

Location alone will help establish your potential clientele, which will help determine the food you can successfully offer and the mood of your restaurant.

In a shopping mall? Lunch may be a bigger meal than dinner. Shoppers, mostly women, some with kids. Bright, roomy seating, with a place to put shopping bags, finger food for the kids, medium priced, well known food items with no surprises. Salads and sandwiches, easy on the heavy food. Maybe even breakfast for the other store owners.

Scenic view? Sounds like a place couples would opt for a special event. They’re going to be looking for interesting food and décor . . . something different. Upscale offering, (which will support upscale prices) Maybe mix in a strawberry compote into your vinaigrette dressing, just to make a ‘different’ taste . . . or a hollowed out mound of mashed potatoes, topped with a little garnish. And, of course, you’ll need an ample wine cellar. Feature these special items on your menu or, if practical, even on the front panel of your restaurant menu covers.

Of course, wherever you are, you will end up with a mix of clientele, you can’t focus on any one group . . . but you can do your best to make them all comfortable. Upscale? You’ll need more room between tables and a quiet, relaxing atmosphere. Sports bar/ TV sets around the room, tables closer together for easier intermingling.

Your location will help create the demographics of your clientele, your clientele will help shape your menu, your menu will help lay out your kitchen and dining room.

Your choice of location is just the beginning, but you’ve already established your goal for primary clientele and serving employees. Remember they’ve got to be motivated just as much as your customers. Their tips are based on your seatings x average check.

#6 in a series of comments and suggestions by Mark R. Strange

Buying Menu Covers?

Do the Math.

They may look alike, but . . .

Many menu covers may look alike but they’re not all made alike.

You’ve written your menu copy, maybe even have given it to the printer, and now you need a cover. If you leave it up to the printer, you may get the best cover you can for your dollar, based on your printer’s past experience and resources or you may get a cover from the manufacturer who offers your printer the largest price discount.

The style of cover to choose may be a daunting challenge, but the choice of supplier is simple. Select the vendor who offers the best guarantee of usage.

The math is easy. Take the unit cost of the cover and divide it by your best guess as to the number of times you’ll use that cover over the vendors guaranteed life of the cover. The lowest ‘cost per serving’ will be your best value.

Example: Vendor A sells a cover for $3.00 a piece, and offers a three month guarantee, vendor B sells what appears to be the same cover for $6.00 a piece and offers a one year guarantee. You plan to purchase 75 covers to serve 100 people a day. 100/75 = each cover will be used 1.33 times a day x 7 days = 9.3 times a week x 4.33 = 40.3 per month.

Vendor A will guarantee that you will get 3 months, which at 40.3 per month = 121 servings from your $3.00 cover or 2 ½ cents per serving.

Vendor B will guarantee that you will get 12 months, which at the same 40.3 uses per month = 484 servings from your $6.00 cover = less than 1 ¼ cents per serving.

If it’s in your budget, menu covers from vendor B is definitely the more economical way to go.

The choice of style of cover can be made easier by reading the descriptions of the products. If you are planning on serving finger food and dips, your menu should be protected from food stains and greasy finger prints. Film lamination from your local printer is a popular solution if food prices are steady, but if you have to keep changing prices then cafe style restaurant menu covers with plastic sleeves into which you can insert and remove inexpensive printed menus may be the way to go.

If your restaurant offers a more upscale atmosphere and a more creative selection of food and beverages, then more upscale looking menus and menu covers may be necessary to showcase your items and the higher prices you need to cover your higher food costs.

#7 in a series of comments and suggestions by Mark R. Strange

*NEW* Faux Cowhide Menu Covers - New Soft Touch Faux Cowhide Casemade Menu Covers

Outside lining made from ultra-soft, ultra-strong, polyurethane, laminated to a woven backing for outstanding folding and wear strength, but the look and SOFT feel of genuine, cured cowhide.

Available in a wide selection of colors, sizes and configurations.

Covers are case made (outside lining turned over binders' board, edges hidden behind inside lining.)

Inside lining and inside photo-album style diagonal corners made from imitation leather in a complimentary color.

Your menu sheets are held firmly in place under diagonal photo-album style pockets at each of the four corners.

Your logo can be decorated in a variety of complimentary colors, either directly on the cover or recessed inside a cutout, picture frame window.

Covers are available padded or not padded, with square or rounded corners.

Suggestive Marketing for Restaurateurs

I’m not making this stuff up!

I’m not making this stuff up!

Excerpts reprinted from an article by Crystal Phend, Senior Staff Writer, MedPage Today

Published: March 07, 2011

Seeing Shrek, Dora the Explorer, and other popular animated characters on cereal boxes appears to influence kids' perceptions of how good the cereals taste, researchers say.

A taste-testing study among 80 young children at a big city shopping center found that those who saw a popular media character on a cereal box liked the cereal's taste more than those who saw a box with no character on it (mean difference 0.54 on a five-point scale, P=0.01 for effect), according to Sarah E. Vaala, MA, of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and colleagues.

The cartoon characters particularly influenced ratings for cereal with a name that implied it was more sugary than healthy, Vaala and co-authors reported in the March issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.

"Messages encouraging healthy eating may resonate with young children, but the presence of licensed characters on packaging potentially overrides children's assessments of nutritional merit," they warned in their paper.

Trade characters like McDonald's Ronald McDonald and licensed characters like DreamWorks' Shrek have become omnipresent over the past decade in marketing food to kids, particularly less healthy products, noted study co-author Matthew A. Lapierre, MA, also of the University of Pennsylvania.

"There's a growing body of evidence that these characters are very effective," he told MedPage Today. "What our study adds is they're even changing how children experience products ... rather than just simple product preference."

The researchers made four versions of a cereal box that varied only in name (Healthy Bits or Sugar Bits) and presence or absence of a recognizable character on the front (in this case, the dancing penguins from the Warner Brothers movie Happy Feet).

Then 80 children ages 4 to 6 recruited for taste testing at a shopping mall in a large Northeastern city received dry samples of a cereal containing 6 g (0.21 oz) of sugar per serving -- an intermediate amount between Cheerios' 1 g of sugar (0.03 oz) and Fruit Loops Marshmallow's 16 g (0.53 oz) per serving.

When asked how much they liked the cereal on a five-point smiley face scale with 1 indicating "really do not like" and 5 indicating "really like," nearly all liked it regardless of packaging.

The taste scores were significantly higher when the box showed the character, though (mean 4.70 versus 4.16).

If pictures on a cereal box can influence how the cereal inside tastes to children, what effect would an attractive, up-scale menu cover and menu presentation have on your diners taste buds? Of course adults are less susceptible to suggestive advertising then are children. No?

#8 in a series of comments and suggestions by Mark R. Strange

Introductions

Making a First Impression

Introductions

First impressions are notoriously critical, and that’s as true of restaurants as it is of people. The details that strike you in the first few minutes can set your expectations in ways that will color the entire rest of your visit. Having the restaurant get these details right can make the difference between you feeling good about your experience and returning often, happily spreading the word about your new find, or leaving as an indifferent diner who may or may not return.

Most of the elements of success of a restaurant are simple: the exterior should be well-maintained and attractive, with adequate parking where that is an appropriate concern, and with modest but appealing signage. Entrance into the restaurant should be easy—including being easy for the handicapped—and if waiting times are at all likely, comfortable seating should be available. The scent of good food should meet you even before entering the restaurant and certainly should be noted afterward. In the Victorian era there was a great effort made to conceal the scents of food and food preparation, with architects even going so far as to isolate the kitchen from the dining room and the front of the house specifically to ensure no food smells would disturb public spaces. Now, though, those fine scents are considered advertising, and a vital part of the ambiance.

In a perfect world, all the details your first visit to a restaurant will come together in unified harmony. Clean, pleasing, well maintained buildings, appropriate design and décor, rich scents, attractive art, and capable and friendly staff will allow diners an instant experience of excitement and anticipation. If these elements aren’t in place then no later efforts will make up for that first introduction. If customers enter already thinking an establishment is inferior, most may tend to continue thinking so, even as the kitchen proceeds to serve five-star cuisine. A simple, pleasing element—something as simple as live-flowers on the hostess’ lectern—can serve to tell your customers that they’ve come someplace special.

Sponsored by The Menu Shoppe

America’s leading source for restaurant menu covers.

Restaurants and Joy

Restaurant Marketing Tips

There’s nothing like a restaurant for simple, unarguable joy. A night out at a restaurant, with friends? That’s living the good life. And when you’re alone, a restaurant can be an island of pleasure in the cold, uncaring ocean of a hard-knocks life. You can expect even a simple neighborhood sandwich joint, a little taqueria, or a noodle palace to bring you comfort and convenience.

What makes a restaurant a success and keeps customers coming back? A few zillion things, of course: no single one is the final telling detail. Location? Always the biggest reason. Cuisine? Sure. French, Mexican, Italian, good old American home cooking—each can call in the customers. Décor and ambiance? Of course! People write entire Broadway plays about quaint little places where the lighting is just so, the waiters so special, the chef a charmer as well as a creative genius. And, of course, there’s the real estate agent’s mantra: location, location, location. That makes a restaurant a success, too.

When you’re trying to work out what makes a restaurant a winner, you can look at it from two basic points of view, each crucial. On the one hand, there are the details that directly affect the customer, in ways the customer recognizes. The welcoming scent of a building as you enter, the warm greeting of a head waiter who recognizes you after a few visits, the texture of the tablecloth or sparkling clean surface of the table, the crisp, clean menu, well presented in an elegant cover: these are things the customer knows and responds to.

Less obvious to a customer, but pressingly clear to the manager, are the details that allow the business to run well, supporting that “feel good” experience the customer does know. These details: the hiring of capable, friendly, intelligent staff, the development of varied and exciting menus, the development of an attractive presentation style and technique: these things, too, make a restaurant stand out.

Over the next year we’re going to discuss what makes a winning restaurant, and things that gain and keep customers. We’ll discuss food, and style, and fun, and even scungilli – Italian snail salad. We may talk about regional cooking, and about the solitary diner; about appetizers and appetite. With luck this will become a favored place for food lovers and restaurant owners to come read.

Sponsored by The Menu Shoppe

America’s leading source for restaurant menu covers.

The Menu Shoppe Guestbook - Tell us what you think.

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    • MariaMontgomery profile image

      MariaMontgomery 3 years ago from Central Florida, USA

      Congrats on a beautifully done lens. If I had a restaurant, I would definitely want some of your menus and other accessories. you are a very good writer. Please write some more for us.

    • Dusty2 LM profile image

      Dusty2 LM 3 years ago

      For your first lens I must say it is really well done. Your lens is very informational and neatly laid out which makes it well organized and easy to read. The photos help show what the menu covers and stands look like for the reader. Thank You for stopping by my Grilled-n-Stuffed Portobello Mushroom Burgers lens and giving it a "thumbs up". I appreciate it. Hope you will try to enjoy the portobello burgers. Bon Appetit!

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      This Lens gives me a Good Idea for putting together a Special gathering for my Family and Friends!!! :D

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      window-well-cover 5 years ago

      great idea about menu stand, every restaurant owner will love this.

    • Natalie W Schorr profile image

      Natalie W Schorr 5 years ago

      Lots of great choices and information!

    • profile image

      restaurantdesigns 5 years ago

      Nice menu covers!

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      do you have any dealer in Pakistan, i am from islamabad-Capital of pakistan and want to buy menu flip stand.

      talha.saghir@zias.com.pk

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      Very well served... Thank you!

    • Menu Shoppe profile image
      Author

      Menu Shoppe 5 years ago

      @anonymous: Sam,

      We can either ship to you using UPS Worldwide Express, or we can ship to a location within the US where you can have it forwarded to Malaysia.

      E-mail me at sales@menushoppe.com and let me know what styles, quantity, size, etc. you are interested in and I can give you a quotation.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      @Menu Shoppe: Hi Menushoppe, My company interest on your menu cover and flip stand.

      We are from Malaysia, don't know you had sell to oversea?

      this is my email address: samx2158@yahoo.com.hk

      If can, please give us a quotation. thanks for your prom reply.

    • Menu Shoppe profile image
      Author

      Menu Shoppe 5 years ago

      Thank you all for stopping by our lens. Keep squidooing.

    • Blackspaniel1 profile image

      Blackspaniel1 5 years ago

      Nice lens

    • stefanruse profile image

      stefanruse 5 years ago

      I saw some pretty cool designs. Good job and wish you ;uck.

    • Blackspaniel1 profile image

      Blackspaniel1 5 years ago

      Nice lens

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I think the menu book does matter, like something creative and unique.

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      seosmm 5 years ago

      Very interesting. Lots of good info. Nice lens!