“Outdoor dining is synonymous with summer—there’s no better way to soak up a city’s scenery, be it urban vistas or waterfront views, than with an al fresco table,” says Caroline Potter, OpenTable’s chief dining officer.
Along with a chance to add more tables—and therefore more potential revenue—to your restaurant, al fresco dining done right provides an important element consumers are looking for: a brunch experience.
Fresh is Fab
If it’s patio weather, that probably means it’s the time of year that fresh produce is abundant. For brunch, perhaps that means fresh eggs and bacon, or big juicy tomato slices on premium toasts and eggs benedict. Perhaps you can even grow your own herbs (or a local grower) to add to omelets and hashes.
Craft Drinks—and Craft Eats
What do brunches and al fresco dining have in common? An increased interest in a fun sparkly beverage! Design your own craft drink, perhaps a cocktail with a housemade syrup or a decadent bloody mary bar.
Go Family Style
Experts say one of the biggest trends is the search for connection and community, in the form of shared meals. The more relaxed attitudes natural to both brunch and al fresco dining make this the perfect time to create a sharing menu.
Create a Welcoming Environment
Just as you did with your indoor seating area, outdoor seating needs to create comfort for your guests as well. Colorful touches are trendy, and don’t forget umbrellas or other provisions for shade from the sun.
Building on the relaxed and festive atmospheres that both brunch and al fresco dining naturally create—and you’ll be designing that experience, full of wow factor, that attracts today’s diners.
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