Evaluating Restaurant and Culinary Opportunities
Restaurants and culinary experiences can be extremely valuable additions to a downtown area. They serve downtown workers and residents as well as attract visitors to the center of the community. They serve both an economic and social role in the community, helping downtowns maintain their role as an important gathering place. Restaurants can include a mix of independent and chain restaurants including: Quick Service Casual Dining or “fast food;”
Fast casual restaurants do not offer table service, but may offer non-disposable plates and cutlery; A casual dining restaurant that serves moderately-priced food in a casual atmosphere; Family style restaurants where food is traditionally served on platters and the diners serve themselves; and Fine dining restaurants.
Restaurants can create a culinary niche for downtown, especially if dining options build upon unique and locally sourced foods. Local food products from area bakeries, meat markets, seafood markets, fruit and vegetable markets, and wines all add to the local dining experience. Connections to nearby farms and farmers markets also add to that experience. This section explores market opportunities for new restaurant and culinary experiences in the downtown area. It provides tools for studying opportunities for increasing dining options and elevating downtown as an authentic “culinary destination.” Methods are provided for analyzing demand for and supply of restaurant establishments. Characteristics of the local market (ethnicity, agriculture, food distribution and production) are considered in the identification of themes that are authentic to the area. The evaluation process described in this section is illustrated in the following flowchart: Consumers – Residents, Workers, Tourists
Demand for Restaurants and Culinary Experiences
Dining and Culinary Trends
Supply of Restaurants and Culinary Experiences
Assessment of Restaurant and...
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