Thursday, March 13, 2008

Times they are a changin'

Well this week we brought in the Aloha P.O.S. (Point of Sale) system to the joint. I purchased it through a re-seller called the Bodnar Group. My buddy Dave Story, who runs the kitchen at the Jim-n-Nick's Smyrna location put me in touch with his Dad, who runs the re-seller. I've known for some time now that this was inevitable. When you run a restaurant by yourself and/or with limited help, you would be wise to invest in one of these systems. I have asked Dave to guest blog to further explain things, but in short it enables you to manage every little thing, from labor to food costs to about 100 other things that I wont list here. I am really excited about it, I'm excited about what its going to do to help me manage everything. It should really make a difference for me of about a 15% savings on my controllables (labor & food).
That being said we are all still learning the system and it is slowing us all down considerably. Last night felt like the first week we were open. We pissed a few folks off last night because our wait times were considerably higher than usual. Thankfully most of them were regulars and understood. I spent a good bit of time explaining our situation and giving away some free food, but its all good though......its to be expected.....and in the next week or so we'll have it down and it wont be a problem, but my oh my is it causing a headache right now. Today was a lot better than yesterday.....huge improvement on everyones part. I dont think it will take more than a week for us to get it down. That being said we may have to go back to the old cash register for this Saturday if we cant keep up. I'll post Daves blog here in the next day or so, its part one of a couple to come.
Oh yeah........2 guys on my kitchen crew is leaving in a week and a half, so I've got that fire to put out. That could be a pretty big fire to put out if I dont find some good guys real soon. We'll see what happens........the good Lord will take care of us.

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What is this Blog???

You ever been sitting around cooking for your family and friends and been told the following: "Hoss, this is the best I've ever had in my dadgum have got to open up a place of your own". The thought crosses your mind to do just that, but for whatever reason you dont. Well I'm "that" guy that actually went through with it and did it. I had absolutely ZERO restaurant experience! I decided to start this blog about my own experience hoping that it may be of some use and help to others who might be interested in opening their own place.
I learned this craft almost 20 years ago cooking whole hogs on brick & cinder block pits at a couple of little BBQ Joints in Henderson, TN. I learned from old, lifelong career Pit-Masters, working with them as an apprentice during school off and on for four years. Over the course of that time I learned the old, time-honored craft of REAL pit barbecue. At Martin's Bar-B-Que Joint I am trying as hard as I can everyday to bring that time-honored authenticity to my customers.
As you read you'll see I've made some stupid decisions, and I've made some good decisions. If you are thinking of opening a restaurant, especially a BBQ Joint, read this blog! Maybe some of this info can be of use to you. At the very least you will be entertained because I pull no punches.
Now listen, this is my blog to not only help with information but my blog to freely rant about my day to day experiences. There is no real "bad language" on this blog but there might be some things said that are very "tongue in cheek". If you are easily offended and/or cant see the satire in my posts then please just leave the blog. It will save both of us the annoyance of each other. For those of you who do like satire and are looking for good information about this experience, then by all means enjoy!