first i should really apologize for my lack of conventional writing in that i don’t capitalize most of the things i should capitalize, like I, like the beginning of sentences and proper names. i know HOW to capitalize but i just never learned to type well and it slows me down more than i want it to and so i have started this habit that is bad. i’ve tried for a while to work on the skill of proper capitalization and am always impressed with how my writing looks when it is correct but then i keep returning to my old ways. sorry. just try to get past it.
i would like to express a few things about running a restaurant and explain and defend my position on decisions i am making currently but i also have to be careful not to get too detailed. i am not here to be a gossip train of the inside story on every little event. but i do like to inform folks when i can and hope that possibly in considering my explanation the changes happening at satchel’s fall like cotton balls instead of hail stones on your head.
the following beers are coming off the beer list at satchel’s:
swamphead big nose, swamphead stumpknocker, amstel light, kaliber, guinness, red stripe, and sam adams seasonal. these brands have been with us for a long time and we love them all as much as ever but times they are a changin’.
if i started to list all of the sources we buy from to make satchel’s LSE happen, i would bore you so hard in the next 5 minutes that you would be sleeping and miss the best info of the post. suffice it to say that we buy a lot of stuff from a lot of companies and it gets to be quite hard to manage all the deliveries, orders, mis-orders, damaged items, and schedules to be organized in any given week. this guy comes too late, this guy too early, this guy blocks the parking lot during the rush and this guy never responds to my texts. all of these “guys” are companies with office staffs, policies, delivery drivers, and salesmen. so any single company could have 4 or more contacts for different aspects of their business. when these wheels turn as they should i am dealing with folks who make me feel like i am their only customer. i am special. i am the most important thing going on at that moment of our interaction. that is exactly what i desire to do for my customers. i want to stop and enjoy each one as i engage with them and not just ACT like they are all i have going on but really make a point to realize the entirety of the interaction.
ok, i am starting to sound abstract so let me get to the point.
there used to be 2 beer distributors we could buy beer from and then a third popped on the scene. we started using 3 and things got too complex and one had to go. that company was cone. we chose burkhart and brown and dropped cone. in doing this we lose the brands that cone sells. it is not an easy decision and it was not made in haste. it was a difficult decision that took over a year to make. the details that tell the whole story are less important than the fact that we needed to simplify.
so we are going to be experimenting with new brands and other beers. bear with us. we are not trying to make you mad but we are trying to come up with a system that works for us too, and this move will certainly make my life easier for one and i don’t know about you, but i need more simplifying in my life.
the wine also is changing because we just stocked entirely too many wines for the amount of sales we enjoyed. i love having a long and great wine list that could impress any palette, but i need to simplify the wine list to be more manageable and to have less inventory sitting around for so long. the answers take time to come in focus. decisions that make my life exponentially better may make yours a bit worse if you are accustomed to something that then goes away….
excuse me while i generalize about a group of people: diet drinkers are hooked on chemicals. our society has rolled out a product that may cause cancer but tastes oh so good in diet sodas. people are hooked on their diet sodas and on average order way more refills to quench that addiction than their sugar drinking counterparts. i want to make my own sodas but opt for a healthy alternative to aspertame and use stevia. so here’s a soda with organic essential oils and a plant derived sweetener. does it taste like diet pepsi? no. diet coke? no. is it supposed to? no. it’s stevie z. it’s all natural. expect something different. many folks are not enthused about losing their diet pepsi but the diet drinking employees have embraced the stevie z so i know it can be done….. of course, we still sell diet coke in cans for a dollar in lightnin’ salvage…..
i face challenges daily. great employees move to new cities and start new careers. new employees come and have to start from the beginning learning the ins and outs of our business and brand. we must train new pizza makers and hope the integrity of our product is realized. this weekend the deep dish pizzas have been less crispy than they should and we are struggling to figure out what is causing it…. are the ovens not hot enough? is there too much cheese? too much sauce? it’s not always simple to figure out what is causing a pizza to be un-perfect. i’ve been doing it a long time and i still don’t always know…. and often times it is a combination of things that collude to make a less than perfect pizza. “it was wet toppings, a bit over sauced, and then it cooked in such a way as to not crisp up enough…..”
when i remember back on early menu back stories i think about the many times i tried to apologize for the mistakes we might make…. and as time goes on i realize that making good pies with regularity and consistency is always going to be a challenge, even with the best pizza makers. there is no simple formula for always getting it right. there will always be some servers who are caught in the wrong job and come to the table at all the wrong times and don’t come by when the refill is so desperately needed and as much as i try and train and teach and instruct i cannot make every table have perfect pizza and service at the same time… but that is still the daily goal and challenge.
we are also in a pizza box pickle. our boxes were being printed by one company and then sold to the distributor who brings them to us. the distributor decided to try and get a better price so they took a medium box and had another company copy the design and start printing the box cheaper. but they didn’t realize we have a different design on our large box (the van cut out) and so we start getting large boxes with the small medium design on them and not only that but the cardboard got half as thick all of a sudden…. and so we are still in the middle of this “situation”, insisting we get the thicker cardboard and the proper design. we were not told that this new company was taking over and as far as i know there was no reduction in the price for this thinner box. the pizza box is part of our brand. it goes out a hundred times a day or more and it should be the box we expect. but in this business we don’t control every decision. and the decisions we do control can be hard to manage. i don’t want my customers sad because they don’t like my diet soda. i don’t want them upset that we don’t have the beer they like and are used to. i want every pizza to be perfect and every salad to be properly dressed.
the only thing constant is change. we are changing and growing and figuring it out still. we hope you are the kind of person who is along for the ride and not the kind of person who likes to find something to complain about.
it’s late. it was a jammin’ busy week and and we are adding staff to the weekdays and weeknights to handle the recent increase in business.
thank you all. cheers!