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Real world brewpub numbers?

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  • Real world brewpub numbers?

    We are purchasing an existing restaurant that is profitable while currently open only for dinner 6 days a week, closed on Sunday (doors are open a total of 30 hours a week). We will be converting it to a brewpub while maintaining the original feel and hopefully the current clientele.
    Once the brewing is up to speed, we would like to take advantage of the lunch crowd, and Sunday game watching crowd as well.
    I'm in the process of writing my business plan and was wondering if anyone would care to shoot some "real world" numbers my way? I realize my "mileage may vary", but some general ideas of where some of you all are at would be great.
    What percentage of the dinner crowd do you all get at lunch?
    What about Sunday's?
    Currently, liquor sales are only 20% of gross revenues (they're really not catering to the bar crowd) and I was thinking of using 40% as a brewpub. Would this be a good ballpark?
    Any other suggestions/opinions/resources you care to comment on would also be very welcome.
    Thanks in advance,

  • #2
    Wrong questions to ask

    Based off of your business case, you may be asking the wrong questions. More specifically, you are asking the wrong people. You should be asking local restaurants the same questions.

    I've been in a few restaraunt and brewpub environments, and it differs by location. Even in chain brewpubs, it differs by location. I had one place where lunch/dinner was 75%/25%. Another place where is was 30%/60%. So I could tell you that your sales will increase by 300% or 50%, a wide range, but it is the wrong data to compare to your location.

    At one location, my lunch crowd was all local business people, and then they would all commute back home at 5 p.m. The dinner was mainly local hotel guests. Two totally different crowds and needs.

    At one location, Sundays ended up being 10% of the weekly sales, but being in LA means football start damn early AND there is no local team. At another location, I was closed on Sundays.

    I recommend being friends with (or spying) on local similar restaurants, as they will give you a more accurate estimate of what you may expect. You want to look for the average number of lunch guests, and the average bill per guest.

    --Jake Tringali


    • #3
      I'm sure you've already done this, but I'd start out asking the current owners why they did what they did. Why only dinner? Why such limited hours? Was it lifestyle reasons, demographics, location?

      If they were profitable, they clearly made some smart decisions. Start with the source and adjust if necessary. Good luck!


      • #4

        Thanks for the input. I guess I realized I was asking a pretty open ended question with a lot of variables. Unfortunately or maybe fortunately depending on your point of view, we are in a very fast growing, but still small community with little direct competition. Fast food, Mexican, a little bistro, one bar, one "fancy" restaurant and a hot wings place are basically your options for lunch right now. So we will be right in the middle as far as menu, but did plan to check into their lunch crowds.
        And I did ask the current owners why they weren't open for lunch and they said there were until about 5 years ago (before the current growth spurt into the area, by the way) and they said they just didn't want to work that much anymore. Must be nice!!! They've been there for 20+ years and are ready for a change. Hence the reason for selling. They are moving someplace warm...I guess I can't blame them for that decision.
        Of everyone I asked what they thought the best restaurant in the area is, all said either this one, or the "fancy" place (which does have a higher end menu/clientele).
        Anyway, I appreciate the thoughts...keep them coming.