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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 02-22-2014, 04:22 AM   #1321
sliding_billy
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Maybe I missed it in the thread, but regarding phone orders... I would limit phone orders to a minimum $ or lb level. I'd probably go $50 total or 4 pounds of meat.
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Old 02-22-2014, 03:39 PM   #1322
landarc
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The phone is a problem, the thing to do, is to put a recording on, that simply states that due to current demand, you cannot fulfill telephone orders. Essentially:

"we appreciate you calling the Prized Pig, however, due to current demand, we are currently unable to respond to telephone orders. We place a premium on your experience when you arrive at our shop, and look forward to fulfilling your order in person." Or some such thing. Serve the people in front of you.
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Old 02-22-2014, 03:48 PM   #1323
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You may do well with one person to take the orders and write up the tickets and two plating stations. the idle station can also answer the phone
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Old 02-22-2014, 08:12 PM   #1324
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Yes, the phone is a big problem for sure. Not so much during the week or during lunch, which a lot of local people want so they can call in their lunch order and pick it up and take it right back to work. But Friday and Saturday after about 4pm, we just can't do it. Like today, we had to just stop taking orders from the phone this evening. I do need to get a phone with an answering machine on it so we can have a recorded message explaining to people what is going on and why they aren't getting an answer.

But the TV filming went well today. I was surprised as the crew spent nearly two hours here. Interviewed a lot of customers, got a ton of shots of all the food, interviewed me a bit, checked out the kitchen, and so on. It will be interesting to see how it all comes together. I guess it airs on Thursday and will be available online on Friday.

It was another great day business wise, but the best part was talking to some really great customers who have traveled far and wide to taste BBQ all over the country and then find out they think what they had here at the pig was among the best they've tried anywhere. That really means a lot.

There were two guys I spent a lot of time chatting with tonight and one of them left an amazing review tonight. It doesn't get any better than this.

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Had my first time today to stop in and sample what everyone is raving about so far. Jeremy and Kelly were there to welcome a house full of customers and talk BBQ. Great atmosphere and extremely flavorful food.

Our party sampled an array of smoked meats and sides. I had the brisket platter, my brother had the pulled-pork sandwich and while we were there we also sampled the sausage and wings.

In my life I spent many years living and traveling throughout Texas , the northern Gulf Coast and the Carolinas. I have enjoyed BBQ from El Paso to Memphis to Columbia, South Carolina and dozens of towns in between, and I can honestly say the flavor and quality was equal and better than the best selections I enjoyed in these BBQ Heavens.

The beef brisket was about as perfect as could be made. A delicious bark, flavorful rub, melt-in-your-mouth tenderness accentuated with an exceptional smoke ring that sets it all off. The fat cap was melted down to further enhance the flavor of the meat, often missing from the typical restaurant entree. Jeremy knows the proper preparation and flavor to achieve.

I had the baked beans and mac n cheese sides. Wow. Both were great. The beans were spot on and would reduce a hardened cowboy to tears of joy. A surprise was the addition of sweet corn bread, as good as any dessert you could order. My brother sat and stole several bites of the bread as we ate our meal.

We had a customer at the next table who wandered over, sat down, and just wanted to share his experience with us. When was the last time a complete stranger walked up to you while eating and set down, just to tell you about his dinner? I guess he REALLY liked it.

I will conclude with this; Run, do not walk, to The Prized Pig now. You won't find wood smoked BBQ anywhere in Michiana that will rival it. I guarantee, you will get home and curse yourself for not taking a take out order with you. We sure did.
Don't want to sound like I'm tooting my own horn or anything, because I'm certainly not, but hearing stuff like that makes all the work worth it in the end.
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Old 02-22-2014, 09:51 PM   #1325
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Makes all the pain you went through before worth it. Enjoy, you deserve it...
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Old 02-23-2014, 02:07 AM   #1326
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Great review! Sounds like you've got the Quality under control. I hope business continues like this. What a success! Congrats from across the pond.
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Old 02-23-2014, 12:47 PM   #1327
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Wow, just spent the last two days reading all 89 pages. Really enjoyed it and can't wait to stop in next time I am in Michigan!!!
Oh yeah +1 on the buying a tshirt!

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Old 02-23-2014, 02:46 PM   #1328
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Jeremy,

Thanks for this fantastic thread. Did you mention what you paid for the building and how much renovation costs were? If you wouldnt mind sharing?
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Old 02-23-2014, 03:52 PM   #1329
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Jeremy,

Thanks for this fantastic thread. Did you mention what you paid for the building and how much renovation costs were? If you wouldnt mind sharing?
I don't think I got into much detail on that in the thread, but I did plan on putting together a rough outline of costs so that people can have a better idea of how realistic taking the plunge might be for their situation.
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Old 02-23-2014, 07:28 PM   #1330
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marubozo View Post
Yes, the phone is a big problem for sure. Not so much during the week or during lunch, which a lot of local people want so they can call in their lunch order and pick it up and take it right back to work. But Friday and Saturday after about 4pm, we just can't do it. Like today, we had to just stop taking orders from the phone this evening. I do need to get a phone with an answering machine on it so we can have a recorded message explaining to people what is going on and why they aren't getting an answer.
Google "Small Business IVR". Some web sites will let you set up a telephone menu system as a front end to your own phone, and the system can react differently at different times of the day. It could route calls to you during lunch hour, explain that you don't take phone orders on the weekends or at dinner, and have yet another message when you are closed. You could also include options to give directions to the restaurant, tell people how to find you online, or list specials.

It won't be free, but can be fairly inexpensive, and would free up your time and still let you be professional with your customers.

Also: thanks for posting one of the most interesting threads I have ever seen on here - keep those updates coming. What will happen after 2 months? After 6? We want to know!
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Old 02-23-2014, 07:57 PM   #1331
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CBQ View Post
Google "Small Business IVR". Some web sites will let you set up a telephone menu system as a front end to your own phone, and the system can react differently at different times of the day. It could route calls to you during lunch hour, explain that you don't take phone orders on the weekends or at dinner, and have yet another message when you are closed. You could also include options to give directions to the restaurant, tell people how to find you online, or list specials.

It won't be free, but can be fairly inexpensive, and would free up your time and still let you be professional with your customers.

Also: thanks for posting one of the most interesting threads I have ever seen on here - keep those updates coming. What will happen after 2 months? After 6? We want to know!
Yeah, I used an IVR system in one of my last businesses. Probably a bit much for what we need right now. I did bring in an old answering machine I had in storage out and at least for now we can get a message up so that people won't just get an endless ring.

And since there was some downtime today I got the chance to take some more pictures. Here is the increasingly popular "Squealer" sandwich. Pulled pork piled high with mac and cheese, coleslaw, and fried onions. People are always curious when we explain it, but when they try it, they keep coming back.

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Old 02-24-2014, 01:56 AM   #1332
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Good looking sandwich!
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Old 02-24-2014, 08:17 AM   #1333
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We have a local BBQ joint that is always swamped. There'll be 25 - 30 people in line at times. Takes a bit of a wait, maybe that 10 - 15 minute window. And another 10 minutes or so to get food. And it is busy all the time. They have 2 cashiers, not sure about serving end of things

Glad you're having this type of success!
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Old 02-24-2014, 12:29 PM   #1334
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I'm late to this party but this thread is great! Thanks for doing it!

On a side note, read "Small Giants" if you ever find some time. Its about small, private businesses that strive for quality over quantity. 2 of the profiled business are in the food industry (Union Square Hospitality and Zingermans) and they talk a lot about the customer experience and relationship.
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Old 02-24-2014, 01:42 PM   #1335
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Get a conveyor toaster. You set it one time and then toasting buns becomes automatic. I bet it will cut your lunch and dinner wait by a couple minutes and reduce some stress on the line.

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