Who: Randy Beach (pictured above with his son Matt, general manager)
Where: Syracuse, N.Y.
Size: 102 seats
Concept: American tavern fare
Volume: $750,000 annual sales
Famous for: Power Play Burger named Best Burger in New York State – two years in a row
The Success Behind an Award-Winning Burger
An independent operator shares his story.
The Ale 'n' Angus Pub in Syracuse, N.Y., sits in a prime location among sports arenas, business centers and universities. And with American-menu favorites like wings and burgers, it pulls in a great crowd. It started to attract an even bigger crowd when it ran the Power Play Burger as a Burger of the Week special. To help market the new burger and build traffic, Randy Beach, owner, gave away up to five certificates for a free Power Play Burger during each AHL Syracuse Crunch at-home hockey game. Redemption was close to a whopping 90%. Fans came in, ordered the burger, loved it and then voted for it as Best Regional Burger in the New York Beef Council's Best Burger competition. It then advanced into the state round and emerged as champion. In fact, the Power Play has now won this award two years running. Bragging rights aside, winning "Best Burger in New York State" has meant big business for Ale 'n' Angus. The restaurant's burger sales soared from selling 9,000 pounds of burgers a year to 20,000 pounds of burgers a year.
The Power Play Burger starts with an 8-oz. Angus burger. It's topped with 3 oz. of thinly sliced slow-cooked prime rib and a slice of Kraft Pasteurized Process American Cheese. The burger is served on a grilled N.Y.-bakery Kaiser roll with lettuce and tomato. And waiting for it on the table? A.1. Steak Sauce. "We tell our customers, and we tell our servers and bartenders to tell our customers: Don't put any other condiment on this burger," says Beach. Indeed, Ale 'n' Angus tabletops A.1. Steak Sauce both in the restaurant and at the bar. "The savory, bold flavor of A.1. enhances our burgers and our steaks," he says. "We display it on our tables because we want our customers to know that we're giving them a premium brand they love. We want them to know we don't skimp." A.1. Steak Sauce helps position the Power Play as a premium burger—it runs on the menu for $9.50 and carries a food cost of about 35%, depending on beef-price fluctuation. Technomic's 2011 Burger Consumer Trend Report reveals that more than one third of consumers will pay more than $6 for a premium burger.
Randy Beach shares how YES Pack helps his business:
"I switched over when YES Pack first came out," says
Beach. "Kraft Dressings are second to none, and the
YES Pack packaging makes them a win/win."
YES Pack saves me money.
Our yield is now 100%. We save about 2-5 oz. of product per container. So based on our usage, we save about 3-5 cases per year.
We have very limited storage space. We love that the YES Pack takes up no room in recyclables.
On the Ale 'n' Angus menu:
Kraft Ranch Dressing; Kraft Thousand Island Dressing; Kraft Honey Mustard Dressing;
Kraft Balsamic Vinaigrette; Kraft Blue Cheese