Uptown Sedona Restaurants - Building Profitable Plant-based Menus

Building and executing a great menu is hard enough. Restricting that menu to plant-based ingredients can make finding profitability even harder.

If you've put your sites on your menus' ability to bring in and satisfy new Vegan / Plant-based demand you might find that the options and the economics aren't the same as for other protiens. 

Our team has been focused exclusively on plant-based menu strategy for 7 years, We've seen lots of winning menu items and lots of losing concepts.  What we've learned from all of this is that the demand is changing first to fake meats. And now away from heavily processed foods, especially for restaurants that pride themselves in serving real whole food. This challenge was fully present for the team at the Sinagua Restaurant Group in Sedona, which Jesse Alexander actively operates.  And here's how we solved it...

Having taken on NexVeg in 2019 in 3 of their restaurants.  In Spring 2020 the group decided to move their Cafeteria-style menu at Canyon Breeze to the Beyond Burger, dropping NexVeg at that location.  They figured the massive marketing spend from Beyond could be meaningful to drive more market share.  One year later, NexVeg is back on the menu at Canyon Breeze and their latest concept Don Diego's as well.

When we asked what they learned and why they switched back versus running us side by side, the answer was clear...

" Anyone that's had the pleasure of working with you (NexVeg) knows that it is not a one-sided relationship," said Jesse to Justin Benedict, his NexVeg Food Specialist. "Your team is always more concerned with our restaurants' success than anything else and we appreciate it. Even the extra step of taking photos to highlight our dishes and promoting us on social media has helped. When your marketing people added us to Happy Cow, which we hadn't noticed traffic from before, it paid off.  Their users come in to eat, leave great reviews and come back again.  We didn't have more than some mediocre plant-based ingredients before bringing on the NexVeg products.  We now have a comprehensive and high-quality plant-based strategy to feed vegan diners across all 4 of our uptown Sedona restaurant concepts." - Jesse Alexander, the COO for the Canyon Portal and Sinagua Plaza 

" In the beginning, we would order sporadically since we were unsure of the volume of product we needed. You never hesitated to go out of your way to deliver to us or let us pick it up; regardless of the order size. We appreciate your flexibility with our needs and requests, and that the communication lines are always open."

“When customers rave about NexVeg's products it's because they know they are eating real food and not some run-of-the-mill processed black bean burger. Unlike other meat substitutes, Local Food Alternatives uses high-quality whole foods.  The customers have told us how impressed they are that there is no chemical processed after taste. Due to this response from consumers, we now have it available in all of our plaza restaurants:

Sedona Pizza Co

Don Diegos

Open Range

Canyon Breeze

Jesse goes on to share, “Since we are in the heart of uptown Sedona, we serve a lot of people that visit from all over the U.S. and even other countries. Customers are not only amazed at how flavorful the patties are, but are also impressed when they learn it is locally sourced and has natural, authentic ingredients. We have been serving NexVeg products for over 2 years now, and we are proud to say we have a regular standing order due to the higher volume of consumer demand. If you are looking for a fresh new addition to your menu, that is natural, local, and top-grade, look no further. NexVeg is it.”

 

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