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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 03-10-2014, 11:47 AM   #1486
castlepines
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SlowSmoked View Post
Marubozo,

A big thanks for taking us along for the ride. I plan on starting my Q catering biz later this year and hope to have my own BBQ joint within the next few years. I've spent several years managing kitchens and have a binder full of research of ideas for my future venture. This thread has added more fuel to the fire. Congrats on the initial success...looks like you are doing things the right way!
**Time out**

Springs area needs good BBQ. I haven't lived there for 10 years now but when I did it was horrible. I saw a commercial for Charlie's BBQ and tried it out. Many people called it the best BBQ in the Springs. It was terrible. Ribs were greasy, soggy, no flavor. Just horrible. Red Hot and Blue came in and it was better but still not good. I gave up after that. I don't know if things have changed there much since then but given how many people in the area are originally from Texas, an authentic BBQ joint could do well there.

**Time in**
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Unread 03-10-2014, 12:31 PM   #1487
SlowSmoked
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Quote:
Originally Posted by castlepines View Post
**Time out**

Springs area needs good BBQ. I haven't lived there for 10 years now but when I did it was horrible. I saw a commercial for Charlie's BBQ and tried it out. Many people called it the best BBQ in the Springs. It was terrible. Ribs were greasy, soggy, no flavor. Just horrible. Red Hot and Blue came in and it was better but still not good. I gave up after that. I don't know if things have changed there much since then but given how many people in the area are originally from Texas, an authentic BBQ joint could do well there.

**Time in**
They opened a Rudys (low end TX bbq) maybe 5 years ago near Manitou. Its the best Q here IMO but they are very inconsistent and its not a well run establishment. I spent the first 30 years of my life in Houston/Austin eating central TX bbq so that will be my approach. Having a culinary background hopefully will set my side dishes/menu apart from the places serving processed canned food. I fully believe in making everything in house....even the pickles
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Unread 03-10-2014, 04:25 PM   #1488
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I hate spending more money, but I broke down and bought a POS system today. The manual cash register, separate credit card swiper, and no ticket printer is slowing things down significantly on busy nights. Even more importantly, the register is about as bare bones as it gets and just totals up sales and makes change. If I want to do any sort of tracking sales of products, customer volume, etc. I need to sift through a few hundred hand-written order tickets by hand and manually enter the sales into a spreadsheet. Enough of that!

Plus it integrates with quickbooks, which I already use for accounting, and will help prevent employees from fudging their clocking in/out times since they'll now have to input it into the timekeeping system.
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Unread 03-10-2014, 04:44 PM   #1489
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Having been part of the development team for a few POS systems - this is a wise investment. Knowing your ACTUAL numbers and being able to understand trends is a great way to get to working on the business and not in the business.
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Unread 03-10-2014, 08:02 PM   #1490
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Thats money well spent, on POS system.Your time is becoming to valuable now!
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Unread 03-10-2014, 09:25 PM   #1491
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Money well spent!!
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Unread 03-10-2014, 10:18 PM   #1492
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Congrats my friend. Hope I can visit your place soon
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Unread 03-10-2014, 10:19 PM   #1493
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and it is purty too
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Unread 03-10-2014, 10:53 PM   #1494
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marubozo View Post
I hate spending more money, but I broke down and bought a POS system today. The manual cash register, separate credit card swiper, and no ticket printer is slowing things down significantly on busy nights. Even more importantly, the register is about as bare bones as it gets and just totals up sales and makes change. If I want to do any sort of tracking sales of products, customer volume, etc. I need to sift through a few hundred hand-written order tickets by hand and manually enter the sales into a spreadsheet. Enough of that!

Plus it integrates with quickbooks, which I already use for accounting, and will help prevent employees from fudging their clocking in/out times since they'll now have to input it into the timekeeping system.
Spending money is one thing, investing in something that gets you more customers through the lines faster is another. This sounds like an investment, and I'm a big fan of tools that automate administrative functions and give you more time to serve your customers. That POS system will pay for itself pretty quickly with its ability to allow you more customers per hour.
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Unread 03-10-2014, 11:18 PM   #1495
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Oh yeah, it's certainly a good investment, like the ice machine and range. But I definitely wasn't anticipating spending $10k on equipment the past week or two. If I can just get by a few weeks without needing to buy or repair things, I may actually make some money.
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Unread 03-11-2014, 11:56 AM   #1496
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marubozo View Post
I hate spending more money, but I broke down and bought a POS system today. The manual cash register, separate credit card swiper, and no ticket printer is slowing things down significantly on busy nights. Even more importantly, the register is about as bare bones as it gets and just totals up sales and makes change. If I want to do any sort of tracking sales of products, customer volume, etc. I need to sift through a few hundred hand-written order tickets by hand and manually enter the sales into a spreadsheet. Enough of that!

Plus it integrates with quickbooks, which I already use for accounting, and will help prevent employees from fudging their clocking in/out times since they'll now have to input it into the timekeeping system.
What system did you go with?
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Unread 03-12-2014, 02:44 AM   #1497
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I've read this forum off and on for a while. Pretty sure I used to have an account but couldn't figure out how to recover and had to register to post here. But I felt I somehow owed the post after reading 100 pages mostly centered on the problems with getting this place going.

My bride and I made a trip to South Bend and a random person in a parking lot noticed the KCBS sticker on the back of my vehicle and told us about a great new BBQ place that had just opened not too far away. I couldn't resist so we went and tracked the place down. Little did I know that it was just the second or third weekend the place had been open. The food was amazing. During our stay we ended up going back two more times. I'm not going to win the KCBS team of the year any time soon but I've done OK in a few competitions and have been a judge for 5-6 years, so good BBQ isn't foreign to me. Here's my thoughts on the food.

The ribs had a great flavor. Possibly the best ribs I've eaten in a restaurant, but I also rarely order ribs so there's plenty of BBQ places I've eaten at and don't have the ability to compare.

The Brisket was easily the best I've had at a BBQ joint since moving to Kentucky from Oklahoma. It may have been a touch dry, but that's not a complaint- just an observation. I've judged in small competitions that didn't have a brisket that could have beaten it on flavor.

The pulled pork is what I would expect from a good BBQ place. I personally like a little more spice, but that would turn too many people off to cater too much in that one direction.

The cornbread was great! My wife is from South Carolina and wasn't pleased- which means I got hers as well... which makes it even better.

The mac and cheese was delicious. You could make money just selling that.

The slaw was good. Not the best I've eaten but far from the worst.

The pickles were something that made me remember the place. I am THRILLED to see the recipe posted here. I'll be making a batch tomorrow.

We all know that the restaurant business is difficult. The things posted here show a big part of why places that seem to be doing good business end up closing the doors. You don't always hear about the stuff going on in the backroom, but it is all laid out here. But this place has what it takes to not only be a success but grow. I'd be shocked to learn five years from now that there weren't at least a handful of other locations in the area. I've eaten BBQ in Oklahoma, Texas, KC, Memphis, NC, you name it... and this place can compete with any of the places you can think of. Next time I'm within an hour or two of the place I'll be dropping in again.
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Unread 03-12-2014, 03:49 AM   #1498
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Nice post^^^^ Wish I was closer too try it out.
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Unread 03-12-2014, 09:22 AM   #1499
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been about 20 years since I've worked in the service industry so take anything I say with a grain of salt...

Yeah POS systems are a PITA but unless your small and plan to stay small it's necessary.

It should also help you out with shrink as stated you'll have a clear idea of what you sold and can now easily correlate it to what was produced.

One thing I hate (and I'm seeing it more and more in chain places) is that stuff is weighed out in front of the customers. I understand the purpose, understand the need. Dislike the practice.

Doubt your doing that at your place but in my mind if it reaches a point that it needs to be done then do it out of sight from customers. Nothing says formal and impersonal like making something meet a requirement and even worse pulling product off to make sure your not overweight.
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Unread 03-12-2014, 09:35 AM   #1500
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Spending money to make money is a balancing act. You need spend money to grow but at this stage you probally could spend more cash reasonable. A fast growing business is a good problem.

Congrats on your growing business, you'll look back on these days in the future and laugh about how spartan things used to be.
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