The New York City Restaurant Week of Winter 2017 is fast approaching. Just Monday the complete list of participating restaurants was released to the public, and the 378 restaurants included are spread across the city. NYC & Company, the team that organizes the biannual food celebration, announced the list for the week of Jan. 23 – Feb. 10 of this year.
If the total number of participating restaurants isn’t enough, here are some fun Restaurant Week facts:
- 32 different cuisines will be offered throughout the city
- Some of the cuisines offered include Indian, Latin American and Asian Fusion
- Prices range from $29-$42
Restaurant Week is a great time for residents and tourists in New York City to try out new or higher-class food types and restaurants at affordable prices. Entrees and multiple-course meals that might normally cost hundreds are available at significant discounts. Lunch plates are only $29 and dinner courses are $42. Both are three-course meals at the same high-quality customers can expect at menu prices. Normal tips and taxes are still expected, and customers should check with the restaurant when booking, as some will participate in only lunch or only dinner offerings throughout the week.
Though walk-ins are welcome all week, NYC & Company recommends making reservations early. For serious foodies, that means immediately,, as reservations have just opened this week. Of course, there are no limits on how many reservations you can make, and customers are encouraged to try as many different restaurants as possible, or to stick with a couple favorites all week long.
An automated restaurant has recently opened in New York City and is providing customers with a unique dining experience that only can be experienced in several remote locations around the planet.
The automated restaurant is known as Eatsa and is located in Midtown Manhattan. Eatsa is a small company that started in California and has now expanded as a chain. The new location in Midtown Manhattan will be their anchor restaurant on the east coast of the United States.
Eatsa operates a concept where you don’t need to interact with a waitress or other restaurant staff and instead handle your kitchen ordering using an ipad device that is available on site to use. Alternatively, you can use your own phone to submit an order. The meal is then delivered in a locker in the restaurant that you tap on in order to access the meal. While people work in Eatsa preparing the food, you do not see them or need to interact directly with them. Instead, all ordering and food specifications are done using your device.
Eatsa is located at 285 Madison Avenue near 41st street and serves Vegetarian food. Meals are affordable and cost about $7 per meal. For Midtown Manhattan where meals can cost as much as $10 to $15 for a salad these prices are comparatively affordable, although no meat is available. The restaurant specializes in quinoa, the healthy alternative grain and also has kale salads, a hummus bowl, a curry bowl, and a burrito bowl.
Of course, the restaurant saves on the avoidance of costs relating to serving food. Co-Owner, Scott Drummond indicated that he is working to reducing the cost of the food to about $5 per bowl of food, but rent costs and other operating costs add to the overhead for the business. While there are few reviews for the newly opened restaurant, overall the few that do exist are positive.
The advantages of the restaurant’s structure is that meals are delivered quickly and affordably, particularly in a crowded area where many office workers need to pick up their meals quickly and easily so that they can return to the office fast. The meals, being vegetarian, are also low in calorie and include many healthy ingredients that can fuel a person on the go.
New York likes to stay trendy and liberal. One of the moves made by many restaurants in the city this year was ending the age old practice of tipping. Instead, they went to what can only be described as a fair wage system. It’s an effort to bring the restaurant business, one that booms at roughly $800 billion per year, in line with modern workplace standards.
Restaurants banded together in Danny Meyer’s Union Square Hospitality Group to ban tipping in their restaurants. Instead of customers tipping those who wait on them, these restaurants pay all their employees wages that reflect their seniority at the restaurant as well as their skill in their industry. Customers pay a fixed amount for their food, it is all stated in the menu so they are aware that the plates include the pay for the servers. This idea has been in place a few years now, and has often been found in very expensive restaurants. This year, New York saw a group of restaurants band together to try to make a change in October, information can be found here.Your text to link…. As the year comes to a close, it’s a good time to review how things are going after the first few months. Some restaurants saw some immediate changes were necessary. In order to compensate for the extra pay for their servers, restaurants were forced to raise prices on their menu. In one example, an octopus plate jumped from $16 to $21 overnight. While it makes sense that prices should raise, consumers were leery of paying an extra $5 for one plate. In order to make the transition a little smoother, the restaurant had to add some extra octopus to the plate. The compromise seems to have worked so far and consumers are pleased.
At some restaurants, raising the price for plates wasn’t the only change. The need to make up costs meant shifting around personnel. One location shrunk their kitchen staff from six cooks to four, sometimes five per shift, meaning a loss of a job, maybe two.
At the end of the day, restaurants discovered paying fair wages and removing the tipping policy required an entire overhaul for their entire system, essentially like opening a whole new restaurant. Some restaurants that got on board months ago have already revoked the policy due to finding it completely unworkable on their smaller scale locations.
It’s too soon to gauge weather this movement will become the norm nationwide, and too soon to see if it is the best way to go. Restaurants are still adapting and growing with the big change.