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Well, someone has to start this thread, and I did go last night, but it took Significant Eater longer than expected to arrive, so I was content with an aperitif and a glass of Pet Nat, and 5 delicious

By the time this thread peters out,I think that Frenchette may have a burger on the menu...

In keeping with a long-standing tradition on MFF, this response is obligatory:   Having been to neither The Grill or Frenchette, I can unequivocally state Frenchette is certainly more "Mad Menesque"

It brought in customers who split a burger between two people and called it dinner. Which cant be good for the restaurant

 

I may not have owned Minetta, but I have eyes. And am not a moron. Oddly, sometimes I even chat with chefs.

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It brought in customers who split a burger between two people and called it dinner. Which cant be good for the restaurant

 

I may not have owned Minetta, but I have eyes. And am not a moron. Oddly, sometimes I even chat with chefs.

 

And what proportion of customers did that? You have eyes, sure, but were you there every minute they were open to see what happened with all burger orders? and what else might have been ordered by the table?

 

Of course you're not a moron. But it's not accurate to generalize/extrapolate from only your observations.

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By the end of it, over 50% of covers were burgers. I imagine the number is even higher at the zombie restaurant. I can't tell you how many are shared, nor do I think you know what statistical significance is, but even if every diner gets a burger the result is similar (and indeed the conclusion is there's no need for an expensive kitchen team)

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To belabor the point, if you're the OWNER of Minetta, maybe you're delighted that you can make loads of money selling burgers without having anyone actually COOK anything. But if you're the former chefs there, having essentially been rendered redundant by the burger's predominance, unless you're totally greedy maybe you think that at YOUR restaurant you won't let that happen again.

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This begs the question of what motivates someone to open, i.e., financially back, a restaurant. Cooks/chefs for the love of cooking. But what's in it for owners besides ego if the place resonates, like backing a play. There are many financial vehicles with better odds.

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Minetta is a place, for many people who are downtown, and think "I want a good burger !",and then they come to Minetta,free to change their minds and order something else when they get there ,no pressure....why not ? I go there for lunch, often for...a burger ! with great frites ,and there are tourists who come there just for that, locals ,whatever....burgers on most tables from my observations. I felt the same way about olive oil gelato, but tuff shit...money talks.

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McNally is also not a moron (at least not at running restaurants). You don't menu an item if you don't want to sell it. And you want to sell as much as possible--although maybe not items that require superexpensive ingredients and/or a lot of labor, unless you can price them high enough. A burger is a low-cost, high-profit item, so selling lots of them is good for the bottom line. I would expect that he's done the analysis, and if it pointed to not making much money selling burgers, he'd pull it.

 

Why the hell else are so many fancy chefs opening burger places? Because they don't want to be "creative"? Or because they want to make money?

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It is an issue for chefs, who think it's not an expression of their skill; and it is an issue for owners, who need to make money. It's not either/or.

 

Above all, it's an issue for Lex, because the burger needs to be priced not much less than a full entree.

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