Restaurant Site Menus

Felisdemens asks a question I’ve always wondered about myself:

– Why in the name of FUCK do restaurant websites IN THIS DAY AND AGE
have their menus solely available as PDFs? That is the stupidest thing
ever conceived. Seriously. It’s time to cockpunch your web designer,
people.

This makes me crazy. I hate downloading things I’m only gonna read once.

A.

10 thoughts on “Restaurant Site Menus

  1. whet moser says:

    “Why in the name of FUCK do restaurant websites IN THIS DAY AND AGE have their menus solely available as PDFs [and autoplay music, and splash pages, and lack press photos, and generally suck]?”
    Fixed.

    Like

  2. virgotex says:

    Maybe if this bothers people to the point of all caps, they should stick to eating in restaurants where seasonality and availability don’t ever ever affect the menu. Like chili’s or applebee’s

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  3. jeffrey says:

    That’s all pretty bad but the worst is when they make it difficult to find crucial information about their establishment such as address, phone number and hours. Soo many restaurant sites find stupid ways to hide this stuff.
    But my favorites that I’ve seen lately are the places that buy a domain name which then directs you to a Facebook page that you can’t see without a Facebook account. Major FAIL

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  4. Kevin says:

    In my experience, it’s the Chili’s and the Applebee’s that have downloadable pdf menus with calorie counts, etc.
    I know availability and nightly specials are likely to keep things variable, but almost any restaurant has a set of dishes that are almost always available. I don’t want to download that menu as a pdf, either — but I’d still rather do that than sit through a little Flash movie to read a little Flash menu.
    (I’ll be over here with the others, shaking my cane.)

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  5. dr4lom says:

    ummm… I like downloadable menus. They’re usually easier to read than whatever bogus flash menu that’s created and they print out just like they look. I guess I just live in a world where we go to the same place for lunch most days.

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  6. joejoejoe says:

    My wild ass guess is they don’t want easy price comparison from competitors and from patrons. I printed out a menu from my favorite restaurant (Oyster Bar in Grand Central Station, NY) to show somebody for the gee-whiz quality, not the holy shit $23 for that is a huge ripoff quality. That said, it’s dumb. Putting obstacles in front of customers is dumb in the long run.

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  7. CybScryb says:

    Because the owners kids took some kewl classes in Webination in high school and now they’re the shiznut when it comes to HTML tricks. But when mom or dad gives them the Word document with the menu, all they know to do is run it through Acrobat Professional and churn out a way-too-ginormous PDF file.
    Seriously, if you find a restaurant with an HTML 5.0 menu and an online form that lets you place an order, patronize them. It won’t take long for an article to appear in the local news talking up the new “high-tech” place to eat and any small business will follow another who has a good idea.

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  8. virgotex says:

    Sorry ya’ll. I’ll continue to patronize restaurants based on the fact that they consistently serve good food using good ingredients prepared and served well. Cooking well, with love and consistency, is an art that I prize and will support regardless of IT proficiency. Restaurants aren’t interchangeable with any other small business.
    Unless they’re using unfair labor practices or putting rat urine in the food, I could seriously not give a shit about their web sites. Privileging/prioritizing restaurants (of all businesses in this risky economy) based on something other than what they are supposed to do best, is imho silly. It’s like caring whether they use a white board rather than a chalk board to print their daily specials.

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  9. Athenae says:

    Sorry ya’ll. I’ll continue to patronize restaurants based on the fact that they consistently serve good food using good ingredients prepared and served well. Cooking well, with love and consistency, is an art that I prize and will support regardless of IT proficiency.
    It’s a peeve, that’s all. Like the consistent shittiness of car dealership commercials across different markets.
    Good food and good ingredients don’t have to exist only in the company of crap, impractical web design. The choice isn’t “Chilis or Applebees” or “pdf menus.” This isn’t 1993 anymore and web sites that are changeable on a daily basis do in fact exist. It’s a matter of making this easy, as joejoejoe said, for your customers.
    I want a menu available with one or two clicks, ESPECIALLY when the menu changes with the seasons and the one I downloaded last week might not be current anymore.
    That being said, I buy the excuse that it’s a way to prevent competitors from quickly comparing prices on the same menu items.
    FWIW, Amtrak’s train schedules are also things you have to download, pull open Acrobat, find the fucking thing and open it to read. Or maybe I just need to upgrade my browser. Who knows.
    A.

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  10. PGE says:

    I’m guessing the PDFs come from the printer who does the paper menu.

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