David Wilkinson - 11 Sep 2017

Can less really be more?

Middle Lane Drivers

As a fully signed up member of the grumpy old man club I find myself with an ever growing list of things that really get on my nerves. You know the sort of things I mean: middle lane drivers, Facebook, cyclists who believe that red lights are optional, people (nearly always men) who think it’s acceptable to sniff on the train and just about anything to do with reality TV. ‘Keeping up with the Real house-Kyles of Chelsea ex-love shore’ IS NOT ENTERTAINMENT. I’m sorry. Deep breath, relax. OK, better now.

One thing that definitely gets my goat is unnecessarily long and complicated menus. When I find myself in a small, picturesque country pub or a bijou brasserie I always want to be presented with a ‘best of’ menu. I want the menu to be large enough to give me a few options but small enough to make me believe that the chef knows and loves every single dish.

My heart always sinks when I’m in a tiny country pub with only six tables to serve food on, three locals cuddling their pints at the bar, a bored looking border collie with his nose in an empty packet of salt and vinegar and you’re handed a double gate fold, six sided menu with a hundred dishes on it. There’s just too much of it and by the time you’ve read everything and worked out what goes with what you’ve lost interest. You also know that the kitchen will be the size of a phone box and there will probably only be one chef and one assistant in there trying to perform miracles. It’s just not possible. The freezer will be packed and to cut down on wastage almost nothing will be fresh. “Yes sir, your food will be ready as soon as the oven goes Ding.”

Our menus at One Great George Street really are very comprehensive but unlike an a la carte venue where they have to keep everything in stock because they can’t predict what their customers will order, we always know in advance what dishes have been requested and order accordingly. It’s a very efficient system and wastage is kept to a minimum.

Having said all that we have been busy revaluating our banqueting menus ready for 2018 to make the task of choosing a menu quicker and easier for an event organiser while maintaining the level of variety that our customers demand.

I will explain. Our fork buffet menus at the moment are purely for our customers to choose from, and they really are quite extensive. With the best will in the world it must take ages to pick through every dish and decision fatigue must be a real issue.

With this in mind we have created seven complete, balanced fork buffet menus for the 2018 brochure that can be chosen just as they are or, if you would prefer to cherry pick, all the dishes are interchangeable at no extra cost.

In this way we believe that you get the best of both worlds. You can save valuable time by picking a set menu or you have the ability to customise if that better suits your needs.
It’s not just the fork buffets we are working on but the whole menu. In general we are trying to make them clearer, more user friendly and more streamlined. We are excited about the prospect and look forward to presenting them to you next year.

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