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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, equipment and outdoor cookin' . ** Other cooking techniques are welcomed for when your cookin' in the kitchen. Post your hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures, but stay on topic and watch for that hijacking.


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Old 04-28-2014, 12:46 PM   #1696
bander7003
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Oh, you'll get some groupies, that's for sure. A girl wearing a high school cheerleading jacket just walked up and gave me a piece of paper with her name and number on it. I mean WTF? And my staff has said there have been a few ladies in here asking them about my relationship status.
Wow... that must be some brisket. I was already in awe of your cooking just by seeing pics but this takes it to a whole new level.
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Old 04-28-2014, 01:03 PM   #1697
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As for the brewery brisket truck, I'm not sure who they are having run it. They have a small restaurant at their place and have offered some smoked foods for some time now. I'll have to go check it out next week and see how it is.
Is it Greenbush?

My wife and I will be in Union Pier at the end of June, and we are planning on making a side trip to The Prized Pig. Looking forward to it! Got t-shirts for customers to buy yet?
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Old 04-28-2014, 01:05 PM   #1698
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You all should report that one to Yelp, because people from CA aren't allowed to leave, so there is no way that guy could have been there.
I'm going to go out on a limb and guess that you weren't just asking folks who have been there to review the place when you posted this... Operative words "everyone here."

"I noticed that the restaurant only has 7 yelp reviews @ 4.5 stars. I would encourage everyone here to jump on Yelp and help a brother out. Here's the link: http://www.yelp.com/biz/the-prized-pig-niles"
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Old 04-28-2014, 04:45 PM   #1699
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Is it Greenbush?

My wife and I will be in Union Pier at the end of June, and we are planning on making a side trip to The Prized Pig. Looking forward to it! Got t-shirts for customers to buy yet?
Yep, greenbush with their brisket van. I love their beer, but have never tried any of their food yet. I may go check them out when they are back in town on Friday.

I did have a few people stop in this weekend who did get some brisket there and said it wasn't really good at all. I can't comment on that until I get a chance to try it.

Friday and Saturday were new records. We managed to keep serving until about 7pm, but both days there was pretty much a non-stop line from 5-7. It was pretty intense on the line during all of that.

And I'm finally feeling comfortable to delegate more to my employees. It's quite hard when you're a control freak, but on Thursday I didn't touch a single piece of meat or plate anything. I let them handle it all and just stood back doing some quality control. It felt great, so hopefully I can begin to step back a little so that I can spend more time actually running the business.

Also, I think going forward I'm going to have to look into creating a separate catering side of the business. Given we don't have the cooking and holding capacity to do larger gigs, I'm turning a ton of business away. I'd say pretty much every day somebody calls and wants catering for their graduation/wedding/business/golf outing/etc. Smaller ones I can squeeze in, like tomorrow, even though we're closed I'm throwing meat on tonight for the local Lowe's who wants to feed the store for their big meeting tomorrow.

But as it stands now, just doing all of the catering requests that come in could be a business on its own. But without another smoker and some staff dedicated to handling that side of things, my hands are pretty much tied and can't do anything for more than about 50 people unless it falls on a Monday or Tuesday.

All good problems to have no doubt, but just need to plan how to grow strategically so that the core business doesn't suffer.

Oh, and I had the best reaction to burnt ends I've ever seen on Saturday. This guy who comes in every Thursday for lunch popped in this weekend, when we have burnt ends, so I asked him if he wanted one. He had no idea what it was and was apprehensive about trying it. He put it in his mouth and he said, "Holy ****! WOW. Holy ****! Does the rest of the free world know about these things?" And then bought 5 orders to take home and give out. It was great.
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Old 04-28-2014, 04:48 PM   #1700
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Love his comment...
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Old 04-28-2014, 05:31 PM   #1701
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"And then bought 5 orders to take home and give out."
Most people have to pay good money for such advertisement. I hope to stop by one of these days on my way to visit my children in Chicago.
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Old 04-28-2014, 09:57 PM   #1702
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I cannot wait to get back home & stop in.....My wife is using this as leverage to move us back to Indiana ASAP!!

I have driven by this location so many times & wondered about the restaurants...you...have made it a destination!

BTW: any thought of tapping into the campground as a market?
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Old 04-28-2014, 10:17 PM   #1703
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BTW: any thought of tapping into the campground as a market?
I sort of already have. This winter there's been a big pipeline project going on right across the street and the whole campground has been full of pipeline workers for about six months. Took a bunch of menus down there and had daily pipeline traffic coming in.

They just recently pulled out, but when the regular campers come in I'll do the same thing since they are within walking distance. What's better than grabbing some BBQ and eating it by your own campfire?
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Old 04-29-2014, 08:49 AM   #1704
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I understand the concept of not investing in a new smoker until you can tell if you are going to need one long term, but if you are turning down big catering jobs on a daily basis and still running out of food for the restaurant, it seems to me that you might want to look into getting one. I obviously don't know the details of your finances, but I would think that you could pay for a new smoker just with the catering jobs that you are having to turn down because of a lack of capacity.

This may be what you have in mind when you say you are looking into making the catering a separate business, but until then a mobile smoker and a new part-time employee or two might allow you to take those catering jobs that you currently have to turn away.
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Old 04-29-2014, 12:05 PM   #1705
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Well, with more smoker space, big catering gigs, and more food means more storage. My two walk-ins are pretty full as it is. All the dry storage shelves are more than packed and we've had to resort to storing some stuff out in the shed, and even that's nearly full now.



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Old 04-29-2014, 12:27 PM   #1706
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Those are some packed meat shelves!
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Old 04-29-2014, 12:46 PM   #1707
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Well, with more smoker space, big catering gigs, and more food means more storage. My two walk-ins are pretty full as it is. All the dry storage shelves are more than packed and we've had to resort to storing some stuff out in the shed, and even that's nearly full now.



I would like to shop here.... Great job! Love this thread!
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Old 04-29-2014, 12:54 PM   #1708
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I guess the catered cook for 1000 is out lol
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Old 04-29-2014, 01:02 PM   #1709
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well, with more smoker space, big catering gigs, and more food means more storage. My two walk-ins are pretty full as it is. All the dry storage shelves are more than packed and we've had to resort to storing some stuff out in the shed, and even that's nearly full now.



wow!!!
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Old 04-29-2014, 01:22 PM   #1710
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To change things up, you could also run pics of some of your customers or some of the area attractions.
If you have one of your employees walk through the tables now and then and take pictures of large groups, that will create some simple slide-show content that you can run on your TV along with shots of the food (the real star). People who return will get a kick out of seeing themselves on your TV -- at least that works for my kids and their favorite local frozen yogurt place.

Just make sure to mention when you're taking the pictures that they are for your TV.
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