It makes sense for hospitality venues to stay on top of different dietary needs and requirements so they do not lose out on potential reservations. Among other things, if they can appeal to diverse groups, they’d be able attract a greater number of bookings. Many, if not most venues, now have a range of delicious vegetarian and vegan dishes. They are also, often mindful of others restrictions, like peanut, lactose, dairy, and gluten intolerances. However, there are a range of dietary requirements and preferences to be aware of.
Dietary restrictions based on religious considerations can be complex, and abiding by them might mean looking beyond the food, and considering the set up of the kitchen, how ingredients are stored, how utensils are separated and so on. For instance, catering to Halal, Kosher, or any other religious diet might require research, and consultation with a range of relevant groups and experts; but it can be an important step in making sure the venue is respectful of the dietary requirements of others, and an appropriate choice for group functions, events and bookings.
Some groups may also have days of restricted diets such as Christians who abstain from meat on Good Friday. Another example would be how Muslims are restricted from food and drink during daylight hours over the span of Ramadan. Occasions like this in the diary can help venues to avoid food wastage or perhaps offer more options on that day.
Low sugar options
You see it as an option in certain venues, like bubble-tea shops, where customers can adjust how much sugar they want added to their drink. This might not be possible depending on the rigidity of the dish, or the capabilities and time-constraints of the kitchen, but venues might consider offering reduced sugar options to certain dishes and drinks (where possible).
This offering might encourage customers who are craving something sweet, but not too sweet, to attend the venue. For instance, if the venue specialises in waffles or pancakes, it could offer a different range of toppings (from ice cream, to cream, to fruit).
This can also be a way for the venue to specialise in a niche that isn’t widely available.
There’s heaps of customers who can’t, don’t want to, or are unable to drink caffeine or alcohol. The reasons behind this can vary from personal preferences to health and lifestyle reasons. For these customers (depending on the venue), it may be difficult to find an appealing alternative.
It doesn’t have to be a direct, zero-alcohol/decaf alternative either. It might simply be a range of soft drinks, juices, smoothies, teas and so on that entice customers who don’t drink alcohol or coffee which, in turn, can provide an extra revenue stream for venue operators.
Catering to the needs of people who are pregnant can be an effective way of ensuring that the venue is inclusive, and appeals to a wider range of clientele. It might not be a different range of dishes, but clarifications on potential ingredients to avoid, or how certain meals are cooked. Soft cheeses, sushi and alcohol are usually not recommended during pregnancy so creative alternatives could be a way to host this cohort.
Catering to dietary requirements is important for hospitality venues. It can broaden the venue’s offering, and encourage more customers through the door. Part of this process is making a concerted effort to know what’s in each dish, and being aware of the capacity of the kitchen to make changes. And, if the venue can facilitate a range of dietary requirements, it should consider a promotion to let customers know.
Disclaimer: This guide is general in nature and does not take into account your individual circumstances. Before acting on any information, you should consider whether this is right for your business.
Ask our team how we can help you manage dietary requirements at your venue. From setting up booking widgets to applying close-out times, we'll help keep you in full swing.