Care to share an opinion or two?

Hello again, friends and neighbors! I wonder if you can help me with a quandary I’m struggling with. Ya see, I’m working up pricing and need to strike that balance between greed and charity, er, uh, what I mean to say is that I need to hit a price point at which I’m offering a good value but not allowing potentially realizable profit to drive away. I’ve spent that last hour or so looking at the menus I could find online that show prices for similar menu items and all of those prices are higher than my absolute minimums. In fact, my absolute minimums would only work for me if I could sell 30 covers an hour — which is right on the bleeding edge of fantasizing in a town this size so it makes sense to look at finding those prices that will keep my profit per guest a bit higher than that. So:

Suppose you’re one who would dig a breakfast burrito with two eggs, carnitas, potatoes, cheese, and your choice of salsa fresca, and/or red or green sauce, prepared while you wait in your nice warm car, and in your hands in less than four minutes. What would you consider a fair, competitive price?

A similar three egg burrito (with bacon, ham, or sausage instead of carnitas) at our café downtown is $9.95. At the convenience store a kinda sorta similar thing (bacon or sausage and more potato than anything else) without the salsa or sauce, which is made the night before then reheated in the morning and comes wrapped in foil and a soggy ass tortilla is $2.95 (if memory serves). For various reasons I can’t bring myself to do that bit of market research of going in and buying one of those nasty ass convenience store things.

Or suppose you’re not quite so hungry or are “budget conscious”: What would you consider fair and competitive for a burrito with just two eggs and your choice of salsa fresca and/or red or green sauce?

Suppose you’re weird as hell, or hungover, and would want them in the early hours: What would you think reasonable for a half dozen of the finest chicken wings ever known by humankind? (Johnny’s Asian style wings go for $5.95. The Pizza Slut, er, Hut is serving Wing Street Wings but I don’t know how they’re priced. Neither are available at that hour anyway.) On a related note: Can you ever be that weird or hungover that you might want wings between 5AM and 9AM?

The wings are actually a marketing thing for me. Assuming I can make it happen that I break out and open my own place, I want people to have reason to believe that I can do more than breakfast and do it really, really well. If they don’t work out at breakfast time I will probably be offering them on our weekend afternoons when we set up the outdoor barbecue/grill and serve Chinese in the front and southwestern on the side. I’ve got the outdoor frying setup already and Johnny’s eager to set up the barbecue/grill because he digs my cooking and thinks it’d be both fun and profitable.

I’m not sure if I’m disappointed or geeked that the food distributor wants over $3.40/lb. for chorizo so I’ll have to make my own in order to sell it at a competitive price. On the one hand my homemade chorizo rocks, but on the other hand I don’t know that I need the extra work in addition to prepping carne asada and carnitas every day for the next day. The chorizo prep would be just one day a week, but Johnny’s in there doing his meat prep every Tuesday when the truck comes and there’s no room for us both to be prepping at the same time. For that matter, it’s his habit now to have things camped there so he can work on them during slack times.

The food distributor also doesn’t offer dried chile pods of any kind, which also leaves me ambivalent. On the one hand I know where to get bulk chiles from an outfit in New Mexico that does (almost) nothing but chiles so I can have top quality, but on the other hand it leaves me with another vendor to deal with and one who sometimes (often?) runs out of things. If they run out of something I need I’ll have to order somewhere else and might not be able to find the things I need in bulk — paying retail would suck. But it’d be great to offer the good-as-sex quality.

In other, related news, the building that has traditionally housed the town’s most popular night spot — a restaurant and bar at a motel — is again dark. It shut down some time ago when the cat who was leasing it got pinched for being a drug kingpin. After being dark for several months the owners’ granddaughter came to town to run the joint but she bailed out after two months. I’m just guessing, but my guess is that it probably wasn’t her money that set her up. If I had the startup costs I’d love to jump into a lease there as it’s in a good location, has a good kitchen, and not only do the locals have memories of hanging out there it catches heavy tourist traffic in the Fall. Maybe it’ll be available when I’m ready for it. One can hope.

Totally unrelated: Check this video out, and from the 4:30 mark onward tell me that chick is not stoned. (Good for her!)

Right at the end, after Cooper asks her if she’s going to move to Colorado, she starts blushing and by the end she’s got color all the way down her neck. Good for her. 😀

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11 thoughts on “Care to share an opinion or two?

  1. axiomatika

    i’ll make the mister read this, since he’s more in touch w/ prices cuz he works and often picks up dinner. i’ll also retweet so more people will hopefully see it

    Reply
      1. axiomatika

        he just said to charge as much as you can. some help he is. i was thinking you can look at the competition’s prices. and i’m thinking you’ve probably thought about it already. oh he did say higher than what a food truck would charge

        Reply
  2. axiomatika

    the mister and i would like to do that cannabis tour. in fact, the other night, without thinking about colorado’s legalized marijuana, i said to him, i’d love to visit colorado. yeah, he said, i’d like to leave the kid with her grandparents though. snd it took me a while to realize what he was on about. and when i did, i went, ohhh yeah definitely leave the brat with granpa and grandma

    Reply
    1. happierheathen Post author

      It certainly does look like they were having a large time in the limo. 😀 Though it’s a concern because cannabis tourism might piss of the federales, I imagine that it’ll be a thriving business come summer.

      Reply
  3. blacktarheart

    Well the rule is that food stuff actual cost should be 1/3 the amount you charge. Seems like it costs $1.50 + labor per burrito approx. $4.50 is a good price. If people are hungry or lazy or drunk or desperate they will pay more. I’m very frugal but in a pinch I’d spend $5 or $5.50.. I might be balking a little but hey I’m the hungry idiot.

    Reply
  4. solberg73

    You’ve certainly covered the tactical bases vell here, all the potential pearls and perils.
    My mexican Restaurant did bang-up business by selling at giveavay rates, since ve didn’t need (or vant) to shov a profit.
    I’ve vatched the price of a basic ‘normal’ breakfast, tvo eggs, potatoes, toast + coffee go from a dollar eleven to nine bucks (in the same level venue in thirty years.
    Here, I subsist on a daily chicken-liver in pita + all the fries I vant. Pay about 6 bucks equiv. He’s the cheapest in tovn (perhaps seven other sources locally) but the differential is only a couple shekels plus/minus.
    A shame that I have so little to offer in advice. i suppose the answer you need is the current ‘mark-up’ factor. But folks may very vell choose to eat at your place, and pay a small premium, because they just like you, and because of the taste difference you engineer.
    My experience here vith marketing veggies and other ‘green’ products is that ‘It’s complicated’ as they say. A check at the supermarket tells only one part of the story.
    good luck’ is about all I got. Other than that I’m so hungry from reading this post that I’d mortgage my house for a bovl of chilli, ha

    Reply

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