The cost is not the problem,in my original post i said when people ask for samples we always comply,it’s when it gets busy it becomes a problem. you can’t put pulled pork or beef briskit out on a sample tray as they would get cold and start to dry out,so a waitstaff has to go to the kitchen,get a line cook to put a piece in a cup,server returns sample.might not sound like much,but it’s time consuming as heck,especially when you got a lunch or dinner rush.
How is it i’ve been made out as some ogre,that hates people? Wether it’s samples or bathrooms i’m trying to do whats right by my paying customers!
It’s not BT, just walk down Main Street USA (Fourth St San Rafael,Ca home of American Graffiti and Francis Ford Coppola) and you will be offered a slice of Amici’s East Coast Pizza, enjoy on your walk back to Green Valley. And I am sure you will be visiting them in Mission Bay when you return home.
Just ’cause I’m curious, why is it any less trouble for you and your staff to get people a sample of the sauce than it is to get a sample of the Q (I’ve always assumed the sample would be very small so the amount of meat involved wouldn’t represent a significant cost)?
Pdxyyz,see Kenny Da Fat man post, also try running a bbq restaurant without sauce.
Kenny,people can sample my sauces till their hearts content. i make my own[classic,tangy,hot,private reserve,pepper vinegar,carolina vinegar,and mustard]. I also have "franks hot and extra hot" for folks who just want a tobasco base.
Kenny da Fat Man
The only time I would ask for a sample is if you had multiple sauces, i.e. a sweet sauce , a hot sauce, smokey sauce, etc…And then, I would just want a taste of the sauce, not the meat. So maybe you could just have a squeeze bottle of sauce and little paper condiment cups for sample?
As far as giving them a slice of the BBQ, my vote is NO.
But honestly, I would never ask, I would roll the dice – that’s what makes it fun.
Bushie toook Rick and myself to a great BBQ place east of Roundrock. It is their usual to offer you a sample everytime you visit.
I thought that was very nice and their BBQ ws very good.
Paul E. Smith
What i frequently do is when someone is obviously enjoying their food, i go over and ask the if they like great chili,very few say no. i get a small cup of chili and as many plastic spoons as there are customers at the table.chili is a "crave food"in my opinion and people will drive forever for a great bowl of it.nobody forgets my bbq or my chili.
Samples can be close but no cigar to the actual dish. My best example is a shrimp in a cream sauce over pasta. We gave out our samples in a small plastic cup or a soya sauce dish you would find in a sushi bar. Small round of buttered french bread w/ small dollop of the sauce. We would chop the shrimp into 1/4’s and more finely chop the vegies, taste was the same but we had to change the dish to make it a sample.
Terrible for your body…heavy cream, shrimp and plenty of butter…sold so many of these we had one guy on the sauce line that just about did nothing but make this item. Oh did I mention the cheese?
I can see you giving a sample of the BBQ sauce but not the meat…
Just as I opened the professionla forum and noticed a new question, the Mrs came in, I gave her a breif rundown of the threads and she just shook her head. Their main sandwich doesn’t lend itself to samples but any of the sides or cold cuts are freely offered, a bite or 2 of chicken salad, 2oz cup of tabuoli(sp), slice of ham or roastbeef etc. She offered apprapo of nothing, they even give a(OMG)free hotdog to littleones when the parent(s)get a meal..
samples can be a tough issue. i think ou have to play it by ear. as a general rule, we dont offer samples any more. but you can quickly learn who to oblige. got someone really hungry? already ordered something, you can beef there expenditure by sampling out other wares.
for us, its hard because everything is portioned, weighed, cupped, ready to go. we have to break a portion to offer a sample.
but if i just finished a batch of stew, or just pulled some que ou tof the smoker, i will sample these things out to customers who are waiting for their order to be filled. often times, they will add on….
but if i were dr smoke, with tons of travelers, i would probably say no to samples, unless they were sitting at my table, trying to decide what to order, or they already ordered and were thinking of something extra……
That’s actually a perfect place for that kind of marketing (Pike Place Market). They do the same sort of thing at SF’s Ferry Plaza Market (they also have nuts–nuts orchards are very big in CA’s Central Valley). There are hordes of people passing through–tourists but also people getting on and off ferries. If these people can be induced to try the product, a lot of them decide a little nut snack would be a good thing and buy some. I’ve done it, myself. But what I look forward to is strawberry season. Since there are numerous competing fruit vendors, you can get quite a few samples of yummy big luscious fresh strawberries.
The Travelin Man
Joanie makes an excellent point. Farmers markets are the ultimate place for free samples….and it usually does help sell their product.
When I was last out in Seattle, I stopped by the Pike Market. There were vendors upon vendors hawking everything you could imagine (the place is no longer just a fish market, mind you). A few of the stands were selling nuts — almonds, specifically. These weren’t just plain old nuts — they were flavored — citrus, sweet, savory, etc. I had never had anything like it — and wouldn’t even think about buying something like that — but, the guy behind the counter offered me and my companion samples (I was with someone who would turn heads…maybe that helps?). I liked them so much, I bought two bags of nuts that were, quite frankly, overpriced (not relative the market, maybe, but relative to my own evaluation of their worth). There were other vendors freely offering samples of freshly made jams and jellies and other "local" products.
My gut says that these guys all have a pretty good idea of how much money they need to make to "make it" in this expensive location, they factor the cost of these samples into their business plan, and seem to do quite well.
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