Menu application development for a restaurant

About the restaurant

My client is a high-end Japanese Sushi restaurant in Seattle. I have interviewed the assistant manager as a mock client regarding redesign of their website for web105. (click here for the client survey). During the interview process, I came arossed their need for the better menu creating system. Their menu for Sushi and Ippin (ala carte) changes everyday depending on what fresh ingredients they get on the day: hence changing and printing out a new menu is their daily routine.

original menu

Previous method of creating a menu

The way the restaurant creates menu is manually using adobe illustrator. Items that are out are cut and pasted outside of the menu for later use, and new items are added by cutting and pasting items in the lists outside of the printable area.

illustrator sushi menu
illustrator ippin menu

Problems with the previous method and solutions

The restaurant was looking for a better way because:

  1. 1. Requires an initial training on how to use illustrator
    It is a hostess’s job to change the menu everyday. Not all hostesses have experiences in illustrator, or other adobe products and it is not easy to learn. Also, because of the nature of business, the turnover rate of workers are pretty high at the restaurant.
    Create a web application that is simple and easy to use to shorten time for initial training.
  2. 2. Items often get lost in the lists and it takes forever to find them
    Though (especially ippin) items are sorted and stored under categories, they often get lost and it takes long time to find them. Also since they are manually cut and pasted, there are often duplicates.
    Store items in database and use a search box to find and add items.
  3. 3. Mistakes on sustainability and gluten free icons happen
    Again, because items are manually moved around and those icons are not associated with the items, often the icons are messed up.
    Store items and icons together in the database, so that when an item is selected, the associated icons also show up, aligned nicely in line.
  4. 4. Design
    Icons and prices are not aligned straight.
    Use HTML tables and divs.

Menu application

Please click the links below for the final product.