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Premium Price For Appetizers Requires Premium Size

LOS ANGELES, April 11, 2013 () – OK listen casual- dining restaurants: If you’re going to charge dinner prices for appetizers, you need to provide some quantity. Otherwise, your paying customers aren’t happy.

Last week, I was at The Yardhouse for dinner with my wife and mother. At the beginning of the meal, we decided to share an appetizer. We selected coconut shrimp. The price: $12.95.

Now granted, my particular portion of the appetizer was going to be small anyway, because we were sharing it. But even so, as a consumer I couldn’t help but be disappointed at the overall portion of the dish.

The appetizer contained three shrimp. That’s it. Three. Three coconut shrimp for $12.95. My main course—a pastrami sandwich with fries—cost less.

Now granted, they were big shrimp. I’ll give The Yardhouse that. And it did come with spicy green papaya salad, sweet chili sauce & thai basil pesto.

But many casual-dining consumers like me are not interested in presentation. We’re interested in quantity, or even the appearance of quantity. If you charge a premium price for an appetizer, we expect premium size. Three shrimp, even big shrimp, doesn’t cut it.

Either lower the price or up the amount of food.

Because we can care less about papaya salad on the side.

Nevin Barich is the Food & Beverage Analyst for Industry Intelligence Inc. If you charge him dinner prices for an appetizer, you best bring the quantity or he will write a scathing blog about you. He can be reached at

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