Monthly Archives: March 2017

Fine-Dining Restaurants

Fine dining refers to the cuisine and service provided in restaurants where food, drink, and service are expensive and usually leisurely. Turnover per table may be less than one an evening. Many of the customers are there for a special occasion, such as a wedding or birthday. Many customers bring business guests and write off the meal cost as a business expense. The guests are often invited because they can influence business and other decisions favorable to the host. Fine dining is usually found in enclaves of wealth and where business is conducted-cities such as New York, San Francisco, and Palm Beach.

Las Vegas has several fine-dining restaurants catering to tourists and high-stakes gamblers. The restaurants are small, with fewer than 100 seats, and proprietoror partner-owned. The economics of fine dining differ from those of the average restaurant. Meal prices, especially for wine, are high. The average check runs $60 or more. Rents can be quite high. Large budgets for public relations are common. Because of the expertise and time required for many dishes and because highly trained chefs are well paid, labor costs can be high. Much of the profit comes from wine sales. Flair and panache in service are part of the dining experience.

Tables, china, glassware, silverware, and napery are usually expensive, and the appointments can be costly, often including paintings and interesting architectural features. The menus usually include expensive, imported items such as foie gras, caviar, and truffles. Only the most tender vegetables are served. Colorful garnishment is part of the presentation. Delectable and interesting flavors are incorporated into the food, and the entire dining event is calculated to titillate the guests’ visual, auditory, and psychological experience. Expensive wines are always on hand, offered on an extensive wine list. Food fashions change, and the high-style restaurant operators must keep abreast of the changes.

Heavy sauces have given way to light ones, large portions to small. The restaurant must be kept in the public eye without seeming to be so. If given a choice, the restaurant operator selects only those guests who will probably be welcomed by the other guests. Doing this helps to create an air of exclusivity-one way to do this is to park the most expensive autos near the entrance for all to see (Rolls-Royces do well). It also helps to have celebrities at prominent table locations. Very expensive restaurants turn off many well-to-do guests and make others uncomfortable when they feel they don’t fit in or dislike the implied snobbery of the guests or staff.

Luxury hotels, such as the Four Seasons and the Ritz Carlton chains, can be counted on to have restaurants boasting a highly paid chef who understands French, Asian, and American food, who likely attended an American culinary school or trained at a prestige restaurant, and who has mastered French cuisine. Would-be restaurant operators should dine at a few of these restaurants, even though they are expensive, to learn the current meaning of elegance in decor, table setting, service, and food.

(To avoid paying the highest prices, go for lunch and do not order wine.) Better yet, anyone planning a restaurant career should take a job in a luxury restaurant, at least for a while, to get the flavor of upscale

food service-even if you have no desire to emulate what you see.

Is the Antique Business, Dying, Dead, Wounded Or Just Hybernating?

If you are a small business owner of a antique business, you have probably heard the “death knoll claims”, been deluged with discouragement from the “gloom and doom”crowd and look frequently out your window to see if “the funeral procession” is passing by…I am here to tell you that while antiques as well as all discretionary retail businesses are challenged…they are not dead and won’t be any time soon!

Almost every day I hear the constant comment from some customers and a lot of discouraged dealers saying that the antique is industry is dead, dying or disappearing. There rationale is:

1. The existing customer isn’t buying.

2. The existing customer has bought all they intend to.

3. The younger customer isn’t interested.

4. Everyone that might be buying is buying online.

I would like to give you “tough and committed” antique dealers who have store fronts some counter intuitive insight and contrarian opinion about the “state of things in the antique industry”.

For years the antique industry (like many other industries in America) became over populated with part time, marginally committed participants who saw there opportunity to turn a “passion for garage sales” into “off or on the books” profits with little day to day efforts through the proliferation of antique malls everywhere! These dealers would “plop down” a security deposit, load up the SUV, get a few tables and cloths together and open up a Antique Mall Space. The large size of this group proliferated a huge amount of antique malls popping up on many main streets and malls throughout the United States.

The fallacy of this concept was the space was expensive, add on percentages pretty high, and marginally committed staff not having the same “vested interest” as a owner of a mall space would have. The dealers in the malls were not “retailing veterans” and in many cases found out at the end of the month that instead of the “slush funds” that they thought they had created, a bill for the short fall between space rent and sales was waiting for them on the first of the month instead of the hoped for check. A new “harsh reality” sunk in to the mall space tenants and they soon said this is not a good idea and “bailed” in record numbers. The “bailing process” of mall space tenants created huge empty gaps in antique malls and led to a new reality for the antique mall owner “they are upside down on their rent due to the vacancies”. This has led to record Antique Malls closing their doors and hanging the “for rent” signs on the front of the buildings.

What is the post mortem of this process? “Bigger opportunities” for the surviving retail outlets for the sale of antiques by getting a bigger slice of a (economically caused) smaller pie. This is a moment to not lament the advent of online antique sales but take advantage of it. The internet gives a dealer a chance to reach millions of new customers and “start slicing up” their share of the smaller pie. The reduction in shopping malls makes your “brick and mortar” shop more appealing to the customer who enjoys a new adventure in a antique store (as long as he or she is welcomed with enthusiasm) and well priced and unique items to be tempted by.

Willl the antique industry and store survive and return back to life? I think so. The antique customer is first and foremost a “collector” not unlike a museum. They collect things that interest them, have intrinsic value to them and that they think will in time appreciate in value. The number and longevity of museums throughout the world is testimony that there is still interest in viewing and owning things of historical significance on the part of many individuals. A private collection of a “item of passion” for a collector is their private museum to be enjoyed by themselves and shared with friends…and perhaps ultimately sold for profit!

The traits that will determine the”winners and losers” in this antique industry “shakeout” are:

1. Perserverence coupled with tight expense control.

2. Exciting and unique merchandise flowed regularly to ensure newness to your repeat customers.

3. Good value. The days of “obscene profit” are over. $10 profit to $1 investment may happen occasionally but a more modest $3 to $1 sales price to cost ratio probably will give better value and motivate the thinning “customer count” to purchase.

4. A good attitude. The last thing anyone needs (or wants to hear) when they visit a store or business for some quality shopping time is “gloom and doom”. Motivation and enthusiasm are contagious…so is wining and growsing. If you want more positive customers… be a more positive shop owner!

5. Look for new ways to reach new customers. Pack up the car or truck and hit the high, low, or medium end flea market, antique show or swap meet with a load of business cards and great merchandise. Give the people who stop by a “preview” of your taste and selection and invite them to stop by for a visit of the larger assortment in your shop. Give them a discount coupon, if you want to fuel urgency, to be used on their next visit.

6. Finally keep you store fresh. If new merchandise flow isn’t possible with current cash flow challenges… Rearrange your stocks so that the same items are presented in new locations, with new adjacencies and with new ways to visualize their use. You will find a old item becomes a new sale by simply moving it to a new location.

In summary when the going gets tough…The committed antique shop owner should look at the situation as a opportunity to grow market share…Not toss in the towel!

The world is littered with businesses that would have been successful with a little more perseverance and patience! Quitting is easy…Winning is commitment!

Important Facts Related to Koozies

Koozie is an amazing fabric or foam device that is specially designed to keep a beverage can or bottle cold. It is also called a can cooler, koolie, beer sleeve, beer hugger or a stubby holder. It was discovered in 1982. It is mainly used for holding cans such as beer, coffee, cold drinks, soft drinks, etc.

Can coolers are used as marketing tool

Now a day’s Koozie is also used as a marketing tool. Many companies use this product as marketing tool because it is not only inexpensive to produce, but its regular use also brings the company’s name to a domestic presence. The organization’s logo which is usually embedded on the can cooler often serves the dual purpose of promotion of sales as well as entertainment.

Material and Fabric

This product is made out of many foam like materials such as neoprene, polyester or open cell foam. They come in different design, shape and color. You can easily find foam koozie, slip on stubby holder, collapsible stubby holder, and water bottle stubby holder in the market.

Benefits and advantages

This product is basically used for keeping the beverages cold. It is used to prevent the wet hands that result when condensation forms on the outside of a can. They even control the temperature of the beverage which is contained in the bottle, cup, or can from having any sort of negative effect on the hand. It basically keeps a drink cold for about 40 minutes. It usually provides immense relief to those people who like to drink hot chocolate at outdoor events or who wish to take coffee to work place. You can even promote a business through this product. It is a very economical tool for marketing a particular brand name. It is also used as a gift item.

Designing a Koozie

Now a day’s a huge number of people design koozies for holidays, birthdays, weeding, anniversaries and other special events. It is very easy to design huggies, customized can coolers, coolies, insulated kustom can cooler, koozies for parties, coozies, foam can holder or can cooler, wedding kustom stubby holder, and promotional kustom can cooler.

Many people love to collect koozies in their homes from weddings, picnics or from offices. It is very suitable for picnics, camping, sports games and other travel. They have double impact on people. It not only keeps the beverages cold for long time but also advertise a particular brand.

Technologically Man is a Giant, Morally a Pygmy

Technologically man has made tremendous advancements. From humble beginnings last century with the Industrial Revolution we have come to the stage where we have invented and built so many gadgets that our very existence is threatened by them, like the atomic bomb.

We cannot deny that technology has improved the quality of our lives immeasurably. A journey to anywhere on the globe now takes merely a few hours by airplane, whereas it may have taken many years to do so before. We communicate with one another with increased ease and efficiency. All it takes is the pressing on a few buttons and we are able to talk to anyone almost anywhere in the world. A flick of the television switch gives us news, sports, and entertainment in glorious color. Modern methods of cooking do not leave dirty messes behind. For the even more lazy ones, fast-foods are always available, some twenty four hours a day.

Modern computers have infiltrated into all aspects of business, governments and even at home. City traffic is also computer-controlled. So it is too with many other things where computers are virtually indispensable. Computer breakdown means also the breakdown of whatever system it controls. The computer has become almost all-powerful. Such is our dependence on it.

In war, our technological expertise has given us super-efficient weapons. Instead of swords and spears, we now have machine-guns, heat seeking missiles, cruise missiles, jet-fighters and other tools of murder and mayhem. Our ability to kill and destroy is frightening. We have become so powerful that the possibility of killing ourselves completely is very real indeed.

It is in the light of this possibility of self-annihilation that we suddently find ourselves most vulnerable and wanting. While we go about creating for ourselves millions of gadgets to fulfill our fancies we have neglected our basic self. We can make machine guns that fire a thousand rounds a minute but we do not take responsibility for our creation. So these guns fall in the hands of terrorists and war-mongers. What is the result? Death and destruction on an unprecedented scale now ravage the people of this earth. Few are brave enough to stand up to oppose this scourge. Manufacturers make profits from weapons. Armies use them to destroy one another but hardly anybody does anything to stop it.

We let our creations run riot. In the name of class, creed and religion we plunder one another with the most powerful weapons available. We kill innocent people without batting an eyelid. Morally we are no better than dumb animals.

In the short span of the first eighty years of this century, we have had two world wars and innumerable other wars. Millions have died as a result. Yet the wars go on, unabated. Some men stood up against this madness but, like many others before them, were assassinated, pushed aside or simply forgotten. So the majority of us, including the so-called world leaders today, remain quiet and let the violence continue. Some even aggressively perpetuate it.

Industrialization has brought us many benefits. It has also brought about environmental tragedies. Air-pollution, sea-pollution, acid-rain and other forms of threats may one day overwhelm our very existence. Yet few of these polluters are willing to face up to reality and do something concrete to end the pollution. They are more interested in making a profit. They do not want to spend their ‘hard-earned’ money to clean up the environment. Let someone else do the dirty job. Such is their moral responsibility.

In other areas too there are crimes committed against ourselves and mother earth. We reclaim land from the sea, level mountains and blast each other to smithereens. We do not know how to live peacefully and harmoniously with one another. Nobody wants to be responsible for that. We have no moral courage. Einstein once said that we have ‘a perfection of means, but a confusion of ends’. We are capable of great wonders, but we do not know how to wield such capabilities responsibility.

So we continue in our confusion, commit all sorts of crimes and blaming one another for them. It is high time that we assume responsibility for our actions, strengthen our moral courage and make the world a wonderful place to live in.

Which Is the Best? Top 5 Portable Evaporative Coolers to Buy

We have compiled a list of the top portable evaporative air coolers based on consumer reviews. Hopefully, this information will help simplify your portable evaporative air cooler purchase. Here are the top portable evaporative coolers, based on consumer reviews:

1. SPT SF-609 Portable Evaporative Air Cooler with IonizerThe SPT SF-609 Portable Evaporative Air Cooler with Ionizer by Sunpentown, humidifier, and fan with ionizer is versatile, lightweight and economical. The portable evaporative air cooler easily rolls from room to room for use anywhere in your house or office. This portable swamp cooler shoots a stream of air with oscillating louvers, to evenly distribute refreshing cool air. This portable evaporative air cooler, also referred to as a swamp cooler, can also be used as a fan or humidifier if temperature is not an issue. This portable cooler also offers air cleaning benefits, with an ionic air purifier. A remote control allows the user to conveniently change settings on the portable evaporative air cooler.

2. SPT SF-608R Portable Evaporative Air Cooler. Versatile, lightweight, and economical, the SPT SF-608R Portable Evaporative Air Cooler by Sunpentown easily rolls from room to room for use anywhere in the home or office. Unlike a fan that blows hot air and more energy efficient than an air conditioner, the appliance uses water to cool a personal space up to 12 degrees lower than the ambient temperature. The swamp cooler works by endothermic. The portable cooler can also be used as just a fan or a humidifier when temperature is not an issue. Easily change the settings with the included remote control. The unit provides an air flow of 23 feet per second, a water-consumption rate of 0.6 to 0.7 liters per hour, and a 10-liter water-tank capacity. Other details include a nylon and photocatalystic filter, three air speeds, a sleep mode, and a timer that can be set from a half hour to seven-and-a-half hours. Though perfect for use in dry climates, please note that the appliance does not work very effectively in areas with high humidity since it utilizes water to cool. The 60-watt air portable swamp cooler measures 12 by 16 by 25 inches and carries a one-year warranty.

3. NewAir AF-330 Portable Evaporative Swamp Air CoolerBuilt-In HEPA Air Purifier. When you need supplemental cooling or an alternative to air conditioning, consider eco-friendly portable swamp air coolers such as the NewAir AF-330 Portable Evaporative Swamp Cooler. This portable evaporative swamp air cooler delivers refreshingly cool air for just pennies day – much less than traditional air conditioning. Features include:

  • 8 Hour Programmable Timer: Keep your cooling completely energy efficient by programming it to switch off automatically at a chosen number of hours ahead. You can either set the machine to turn off 1, 2, 4, or 8 hours ahead or keep the machine running continuously by turning the timer off.
  • Selectable Fan Speeds: Customize your portable evaporative swamp air cooling experience with three air speed settings – low, medium or high.
  • Fixed or Oscillating Air Flow
  • Built-in Ionizer, Carbon Filter, and HEPA Filter: The ionizer can be turned on to introduce negative ions into the air. The carbon filter eliminates odors and the HEPA filter removes up to 99.97 percent of particles from the air.
  • Revolutionary Cooling Pad: This expertly designed water cooling pad never needs to be replaced.

4. KuulAire PACKA50 Portable Evaporative Air Cooling Unit with 350 Square Foot Cooling Capacity, 750 CFM. The KuulAire PACKA50 Portable Cooling is one of the most efficient and environmentally friendly ways to keep cool, indoors or out! You can rely on the Portable Evaporative Cooler for all your cooling needs during those hot summer months. This unit is extremely powerful and cools with no harmful refrigerants. It allows for superior cooling that can cover up to 350-Square Ft. lowering the temperature 10 to 25 degrees. Super portable and easy to move with its heavy-duty casters, it comes complete with a one year manufacturer’s warranty for added peace of mind. Features: 3 speed settings, Automatic-swing louvers, Timer and remote control, 5-Gallon water capacity, Water adjustment control, Uses high-efficient rigid media. It is ETL Rated, cost efficient, and ready to operate, right out of the box!

5. The SPT Evaporative Air Cooler by Sunpentown with Cooling Pad, SF-611 can lower surrounding temperature and humidify the air using water evaporation. The evaporative cooler or swamp cooler, provides a versatile and economical way to cool and humidify your immediate area. This evaporative air cooler features a 3-D Cooling Pad and rotating louver for added cooling and air distribution. The evaporative cooler easily rolls from room to room and can also be used as a fan or humidifier if temperature is not an issue. The remote control allows you to easily change settings.