Menu Trends That Your Clubhouse Needs
Menu Trends That Your Clubhouse Needs is a short golf blog post that looks at what your members want to see on the clubhouse menu.
Golfers are becoming increasingly fed up with the clubhouse menu cards that are full of the usual suspects.
Golf is really starting to be seen as a sport. As one generation dies out, another takes its place and the new blood is demanding some great-flavoured, healthier food options as well as new-look classics.
But first of all, let’s look at what a typical clubhouse menu looks like.
Typical Clubhouse Food
Chicken Liver Pate, Soup (that you never know what it is unless you ask) served with basic generic bread and Boring everyday Sandwiches, Fish & Chips, Pie & Chips, Ceasar Salad,
Bought in Ice Cream, Sticky Toffee Pudding, Cheeseboard with Oatcakes etc.
All of the above are OK on the odd occasion but sadly the truth is, I can recite, at least 70% of the golf club menu before I have even seen it.
What excites me is when the menu is as original as it can be. When the Chef, in the kitchen, is passionate about food and about creating a menu that is like no other. Unfortunately, most golf clubs insist on hiring staff that are not up to the job.
It is also down to the members and visitors to support the club too. But they will support the club if the menu stays fresh and enticing.
Here are a few ideas, that I believe, will help to tempt new and existing diners into the clubhouse.
Menu Trends That Your Clubhouse Needs
Source your food locally and seasonally.
Your customers are becoming more aware of the planet and its ecosystem. This is your opportunity to show that you care about it.
Supporting local businesses will help reduce your carbon footprint and ensure your customers that you only use quality ingredients.
Changing your menu on a seasonal basis will also help keep regular customers happy.
Stop overusing your freezers. Fresh, local & seasonal produce will help cut down your carbon footprint.
Cater for special diets.
There are numerous dietary requirements and they are not going away.
Gluten-Free, Lactose Intolerant, Vegan & Vegetarian.
Allergies to Crustaceans, Grains, Celery, Dairy, Nuts, and Soya to name but a few.
All of the above need to be taken into consideration when creating a menu.
Give your members & visitors healthy options.
Not everyone wants to eat fatty food for lunch. More and more golfers want healthier options. Some do want to eat rich food and that is OK but for others, try to reduce the amount of Bacon, Chips, Cheese, Cream etc on your Menu. Try to avoid the Fryer if you can.
Instead of offering Chips or Fries as a side, try offering New Potatoes or even Mash.
The drinks menu is also a grey area. There is far too much alcohol on the menus and not enough alternatives. Let’s face it, most of the golfers visiting your club are driving home. More alcohol-free drinks should be promoted like Mocktails which are also becoming increasingly popular.
The one thing I dislike is the use of carbonated drinks. At least 95% of a drinks menu is fizzy. A wider range of juices would be great.
Breakfast menu & Breakfast on the go.
The most important meal of the day and still most golf clubs don’t offer it as they don’t even open until 9am or even 10am.
There have been many occasions when I have had to go without breakfast before a game.
I know many clubhouses that are very popular between 7am and 9am because their offering is so good.
Different styles of Granola bowls go down a treat. A Cereal Bar or a Smoothie bar in the club is a simple but easy way to offer something healthy.
Simple dishes like Herby Mushrooms & Scrambled Egg on Sourdough Toast go down a treat.
Try offering the golfers breakfast to go. Breakfast Smoothies and fresh juices are also great options.
What about a Breakfast Burrito to go?
Reduce your food waste by offering small plate options.
Small plates offer customers dining on a budget. They may want to sample menu items without buying the whole meal. This will help cut down on food waste. Some customers may not have enough time for a full meal. Others may just want to be social and eat with their friends although they have a meal booked for the evening with their partners.
Offering a 5% discount for returning empty plates will also help cut down on food waste.
Sell Food & Drink in ‘Tasting’ formats.
It is often the case that someone can’t decide what they want, so give them tasting options. A flight of beer for example or a mini Gin tasting.
Snacks should be looked into more. Finger food or quick food could be added to menus.
Street food options
Street Food for me is something that can be made quickly and eaten on the go. Burritos, Burgers, Tacos and Wraps are all great options.
Veggie Bowls, Buddha Bowls, falafel or even Indian snacks like Pakoras and Samosa would be options.
BBQ or Grill evenings are an excellent alternative to your everyday menu. Try it out and see what a buzz it creates amongst the members.
Fresh Fruit Juice Bar
There are many clubs across Europe that offer a Juice Bar. The Juice Bar consists of Orange, Apple, Cranberry & Melon juice etc. You buy an empty cup and you can make your own fresh fruit cocktail. Alternatively, there are whole fruits that you can buy including Oranges, Apples, Bananas & Grapes for example.
Artisan Cheese & Charcuterie Boards
Charcuterie boards are becoming more popular. Local artisan butchers and salami makers are the perfect suppliers for this option. Try adding some locally-made cheeses too. Peppers, tomatoes and even locally sourced grapes will add to the feast.
Serve sustainable seafood.
If your club is by the sea then make contact with local fish suppliers and support the local fisherman.
Just remember, that if you are far from the sea, fish suppliers are only increasing their carbon footprint by delivering.
Try to concentrate on what is surrounding you, for example in Perthshire there is excellent, Lamb, Beef, Game etc.
If you do wish to serve fish then try sourcing locally caught Trout.
There are also other things that clubhouses can do to help increase their footfall.
A lick of paint wouldn’t go a miss in some places. But keeping the decor bright, cheerful and inviting would help. A bit of decluttering wouldn’t hurt either.
Above all… Keep up the standards, especially when it comes to cleanliness.
It is too often the case that restaurants and cafes clean the table tops on a regular basis but forget the seating. None of your customers want to sit on leftover food from the previous guests.
If you are in desperate help and would like some advice on creating new and tasty menus or advice on how you can make your golf club stand out from the rest, then contact me directly.
Together, we can both make a start on turning your business around and becoming successful once again.
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Photo by Eduardo Krajan: https://www.pexels.com/photo/close-up-of-tasty-hamburger-on-board-15476354/