Would you be interested?

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Would you visit a medieval themed tavern with a severely limited menu?

Yes.
14
41%
Maybe?
13
38%
No
6
18%
Cookies?
1
3%
 
Total votes: 34
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MinniChi
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Would you be interested?

Postby MinniChi » 14 Sep 2014, 14:12

I've decided I want to look into opening my own restaurant/tavern. However if I do so, it would be of a very specfic style. I am looking to see if it's a thing the general public would be interested in.
So my question to you is: Would any of you be interested in visiting a place such as this?

So the basic style of the place would be the kind of taverns/inns that you encounter in fantasy novels. Limited menu, standard drinks. Think the Prancing Pony from LOTR in decor.
Menu would be limited to about 10 things: 1 fowl dish (chicken, turkey, etc.), 1 4-legged creature dish (cow, pork, moose, deer, etc), as well as a vegetarian dish because I'm nice. The remaining dishes would be limited sandwiches and soups based off the meat selections from the day before (i.e. anything not sent out of the kitchen would be used in the next days soups/sandwiches).

Obviously there is a lot I would need to get sorted, but frankly I want to see if people would be interested before I do more research on the finances/logistics. That way I don't waste time doing research on something no one but myself and my close friends would enjoy. This would be a reality 10 years in the future.
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Elomin Sha
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Elomin Sha » 14 Sep 2014, 14:15

That'd be an interesting idea. Whatever theme you go with you'll need a good location that it will fit in.
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Hiramas » 14 Sep 2014, 14:35

I visit one suche establishment quite frequently, and I like it there (though it is a bad tourist trap. I'm just a medieval geek...)
Maybe you can get some inspiration? If the language is a problem, google helps (or me, if you'd like)
http://www.wirtshaus-christoffel-erfurt.de/home.html

The menu is not that limited, though.
It's not large, but you have something of everything.
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Avistew
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Avistew » 14 Sep 2014, 14:37

Sounds good to me. An interesting idea although you might get a niche clientele.
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Arclight_Dynamo
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Arclight_Dynamo » 14 Sep 2014, 14:39

"Maybe."

I mean... I like the idea, it's just not my preferred historical period, if that makes sense. I'd prefer 19th century to medieval.

But then I am a history nerd, so... :lol:
SilPho
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby SilPho » 14 Sep 2014, 14:49

If the food and service are good then the general public will probably like it regardless, and at that point the medieval setting is what will make the place stand out.

I'm thinking about places like the Hard Rock Cafe, it's a good setting with cool décor, but the food is also very tasty and (speaking from my own experiences) the service is exceptional.

Your idea sounds awesome, and if I was in the area I'd definitely want to check it out if it feels like the inns from fantasy games.
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Balthasar_Wiseman » 14 Sep 2014, 15:02

I've been to a tavern here in Vancouver that sounds like it has a similar concept.
As others have said it will require good food and service will be the key.

http://www.stormcrowtavern.com/
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Kapol » 14 Sep 2014, 16:13

The reason for having a vegan option is some kind of fantasy creature can't actually eat meat some reasons. >_>

Overall, I feel it's an interesting idea. The big question is more "would it be good for my area." It really depends on the area you'd put it in I think.
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Merrymaker_Mortalis
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Merrymaker_Mortalis » 14 Sep 2014, 23:06

I don't want to be that nob that goes "what about..?", but I am that nob.

A Gluten-Free option would be sweet too.
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Deedles » 15 Sep 2014, 07:49

To my understanding most restaurants tend to have things like gluten-free options of their food anyway. Vegetarian options tend to be an actual menu item so it's not just "A lasagna, without the mince meat filling.", which would be pretty darn bland.

Not entirely sure if I'm right, but that's what it was like at the restaurant I worked at for a bit.
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Master Gunner » 15 Sep 2014, 08:16

The pub next to my work explicitly marks certain items as being gluten-free, dairy-free, or vegetation (or at least can be made that way). Make sure you have overlap between the various categories though. When my Sister-in-Law visited, we realized that there weren't any vegetarian AND dairy-free options outside of the appetizers. She is both vegetarian and lactose-intolerant.

(Fortunately there was a "build your own Pizza" option, which allowed for a cheeseless vegetarian pizza workaround.)
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Lord Hosk
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Lord Hosk » 15 Sep 2014, 08:33

I wonder how historical you are going to try and medieval where?

Medieval England, France, Germany, Roman Empire (Eastern).

Regardless my answer remains yes and I wish you the best.

Two things I would caution you on, dont do the Medieval times thing where you dont have silverware, and try not to mix too much between era's and countries.

If you are going authentic Europe you cant have Carrots or Potatoes and Tomatoes as they didnt exist in Europe until the 13th and 16th centuries.
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Metcarfre
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Metcarfre » 15 Sep 2014, 09:10

I really love food, and trying new food especially, but this wouldn't really be my jam.
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Merrymaker_Mortalis
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Merrymaker_Mortalis » 15 Sep 2014, 09:48

I thought carrots were a thing in Medieval Europe, just they were small and purple.
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Elomin Sha
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Elomin Sha » 15 Sep 2014, 09:55

They were and much longer and thinner.
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Hiramas » 15 Sep 2014, 10:20

Lord Hosk wrote:I wonder how historical you are going to try and medieval where?

Medieval England, France, Germany, Roman Empire (Eastern).

Regardless my answer remains yes and I wish you the best.

Two things I would caution you on, dont do the Medieval times thing where you dont have silverware, and try not to mix too much between era's and countries.

If you are going authentic Europe you cant have Carrots or Potatoes and Tomatoes as they didnt exist in Europe until the 13th and 16th centuries.


To be honest, don't try authentic, it won't work.
You can use a lot of medieval dishes and recipes, but most people want Potatoes and Tomatoes these days and they don't know it anyway.
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Merrymaker_Mortalis
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Merrymaker_Mortalis » 15 Sep 2014, 10:26

Use appropriate names.
I think people are generally better historians than they are food historians.
-
Truly authentic medieval food would be probably just bread and beer. Beer because the water might kill you.
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Metcarfre
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Metcarfre » 15 Sep 2014, 10:38

Hiramas wrote:
Lord Hosk wrote:I wonder how historical you are going to try and medieval where?

Medieval England, France, Germany, Roman Empire (Eastern).

Regardless my answer remains yes and I wish you the best.

Two things I would caution you on, dont do the Medieval times thing where you dont have silverware, and try not to mix too much between era's and countries.

If you are going authentic Europe you cant have Carrots or Potatoes and Tomatoes as they didnt exist in Europe until the 13th and 16th centuries.


To be honest, don't try authentic, it won't work.
You can use a lot of medieval dishes and recipes, but most people want Potatoes and Tomatoes these days and they don't know it anyway.

I don't think that's true - at least not in the culinary realm. If you're trying to market to the average pub+grub crowd, that's one thing, but if it's to those that appreciate cuisine, it's another. Although convincing the latter that a medieval restaurant is worth trying could be problematic.

you're sort of boned by both sides.
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby My pseudonym is Ix » 15 Sep 2014, 10:39

Merrymaker_Mortalis wrote:Use appropriate names.
I think people are generally better historians than they are food historians.
-
Truly authentic medieval food would be probably just bread and beer. Beer because the water might kill you.


As a reenactor, I'm this close to heading over to the Normannis forums and seeing how many recipes I can find to throw at y'all...
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MinniChi
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby MinniChi » 15 Sep 2014, 11:09

Well the menu would be more or less non-existent. Or extremely small.
So yes, mainly bread and meat. Gluten free would mean they don't get the bread (with the hot meals) or the sandwiches. As for authentic, no way. I would set up a nice modern kitchen. The menu will be simply meat and veggies with (hopefully) house made bread. And sandwiches for lunch along with soup/stew for the cold Canadian winters.

Mostly I'm hoping the nerd/geek crowd would be interested in visiting and after they taste the simple food they keep coming back.
I'm just tired of having to go through 15 different steps to plate 1 dish in a restaurant and have it come back because the customer actually wanted 5 modifications made to the dish that were not relayed to the kitchen.

And drinks would be limited to juices, beer and some hard liquors (whiskey, rum, that kinda thing). Also mead if I could find/source it in Canada, since I can't leave the country. Maybe pop.

I know I have a lot to figure out, but I'm just trying to see if there's interest before researching the where/how/money stuff. Also I apparently would need to take some intro to business classes (my fiancée said I had to or he won't help).
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Metcarfre
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Metcarfre » 15 Sep 2014, 11:18

Mead is definitely made in Canada, I've had some at Burgoo - I think the Middle Mountain Alpenglow.

Keep in mind something like only 1/5 or so restaurants survive their first year - it's an extremely daunting task. Business classes would not only be a good idea but a necessity, if not having a partner to handle the business/numbers side.

One advantage is that relatively simple meat/veg plates should be somewhat cost-effective, and a comfortable drinking establishment for geeks should, with appropriate word-of-mouth and social media advertising, have the potential to be quite popular.

Seasonal/local sourcing is also all the rage here in Van, so that could be an interesting avenue to attack (though I doubt your intended audience at all cares). It would mesh well with the theme, I think.

Don't discount wine from the menu, either - it's certainly on-theme and a major moneymaker. Keeping an affordable house red and white with a selected wine list (6-12 choices, seasonal?) would be a good idea
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Elomin Sha
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Elomin Sha » 15 Sep 2014, 11:19

I think business classes would be a good idea.
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Lord Hosk » 15 Sep 2014, 11:26

I couldnt agree more, a buiness management class and a accounting class would go a long way. If I remember you just graduated with your culinary arts degree?

Going into your local community college to the business or management department and stopping by any professors office who has office hours. Tell them about your loose plans and asking if they could recommend a class and instructor might be a good step. I have found CC faculty to be a huge reference resource, they seem to be just the right amount of expert, laymen and professional.

Also the same advice I give to anyone who wants to start a small business, work that job for someone else for a year first. tell your current employer what you want to do and ask if you can shadow them some. Alternatively get a job at a place and tell the head chef thats your goal, you want to learn the ropes as much as get a paycheck, chefs LOVE to say "that restaurant in the paper? Yeah, I trained their chef"
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Merrymaker_Mortalis » 15 Sep 2014, 15:12

When you go into business, be a Limited company. That means your personal wealth and the business are separate. Meaning, worst case scenario, you still have a bed and keep your roof.

Not sure if that's applicable to Restaurant businesses. Within plumbing, being a Limited Company is STRONG recommended.
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Re: Would you be interested?

Postby Volafortis » 15 Sep 2014, 15:51

I think a big part of being successful is knowing your location and having a good atmosphere. If the location and atmosphere work, the limited menu shouldn't be an issue, but it's certainly a high-risk prospect. I do feel that by making each dish diverse, you mitigate that, somewhat.

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