posted on 06/11/2022 06:00
Optimism: Rodrigo Melo expects to double last year’s revenue – (credit: Cantucci/Disclosure)
The arrival of Valentine’s Day cheers up the bar and restaurant sector with an expectation of intense movement throughout this weekend. The estimate is that locals get twice as many sales compared to an ordinary Sunday, according to a survey by the Brazilian Association of Bars and Restaurants in the Federal District (Abrasel-DF). To ensure the presence of a loyal audience, the sector bets on a romantic atmosphere, special menus and musical attractions.
Mexican food restaurant El Paso is encouraged by projections of high sales figures. “Valentine’s Day and Día de los Muertos are the most important for us, with the greatest number of people. This year our expectations are very high: we decorated the restaurant in a more romantic atmosphere and our chef will prepare a special and aphrodisiac dish for the menu”, says Varlan de Melo, manager of the establishment.
President of Abrasel-DF, Beto Pinheiro guarantees that the spirit of businessmen is also positive because the date fell on a Sunday. “This ends up increasing sales on Friday and Saturday. The expectation of growth is 50% these days. And, on Sunday, twice as much movement is expected compared to a normal Sunday”, he explains. Beto adds that to achieve high demand, restaurants invest in several resources: “differentiated menu, music, decoration, space layout with more two-seater tables and promotions that include sparkling wines and wines”.
In the opinion of the chef and owner of Cantucci Osteria, Rodrigo Melo, the advance of vaccination is another factor that should guarantee the increase in sales. “We are expecting to have twice as much traffic as last year. I often joke that Valentine’s Day for restaurants is Christmas for other businesses. And while in 2021 people still hadn’t been fully vaccinated and were afraid to leave from home, this has changed this year and the population is more relaxed about enjoying away from home”, he says.
Rodrigo comments that last year Cantucci created a model for ordering dinner baskets for people to eat at home. “But this time there was a change in profile and the salon on Saturday and Sunday night is practically full. This year almost no one is looking for the baskets, customers really want to enjoy the moment in the restaurant itself”, he comments.
Even those who have not yet had experiences with the date in previous years, bet heavily on sales. The Weknd Coffe Bar was opened at the beginning of November and according to Vitor Hugo Noia, partner-owner, it intends to attract customers with a more intimate atmosphere. “We are going to change the color of the lighting system and we want to put some candles on the tables, all to make the environment more romantic. We are also working on tables with fewer people, for the couple’s space”, he says.
Another differential will be the menu of the day. “We prepared our dishes inspired by classic romantic comedies, those that appear in the movies. So we have starters inspired by Pretty Woman, main courses in How to Lose a Man in Ten Days and in The Fault in Our Stars, for example”, he points out. .
President of the Employers’ Union of Hotels, Restaurants, Bars and Similar Services of the Federal District (Sindhobar-DF), Jael Silva emphasizes that Valentine’s Day is the most important for the sector. “It even exceeds Mother’s Day. Therefore, we are expecting a great deal of movement in all our establishments. The growth, compared to 2021, will be up to 50% of revenues. entrepreneurs in this post-pandemic period. In addition, restaurants have the opportunity to test different dishes on the menus and the population is excited to do so, to have these moments in pleasant places”, he assures.
Food and beverage manager at Norton, one of the restaurants in Brasil 21 Gastronomia, Victor André Silva adds that the establishment has a special program for couples. “We will have sparkling wine and live music with Amanda Miranda on the helipad for customers to enjoy the sunset. The sparkling wine will be free and within the menu we have sophisticated dishes, such as Portuguese octopus, and also less elaborate ones”, he says.
According to Victor, to meet the demand, the restaurant hired extra labor and allocated 50% of the room for reservations and 50% for guests and passers-by. “But those who buy in advance, however, have the right to free sparkling wine and live music, which is not offered to passersby. In addition, we will have more surprises. In relation to 2021, the increase in sales should be above 20 %”, details.
The Santé restaurant is one of the houses in the DF that has a tradition with customers on this date. Owner of the establishment, Oswaldo Scafuto points out that many places will be able to take advantage of the movement of the date to balance themselves financially and implement a working capital. “This will even help in the financial recovery of the sector. The celebration of love will make people feel safer to leave the house, increasing the frequency of customers”, he analyzes.
Oswaldo comments on Santé’s fame for Valentine’s Day. “We have always had very good demand on this date because we already have a more intimate atmosphere for couples. We have stories of requests for dating, engagement and even marriage in restaurants. And customers who always celebrate the date here. We have a tradition of taking pictures in a fridge magnet to immortalize this moment and we have couples who collect this gift. This year, we will keep the tradition, but the photo will come out in a new model, which is a surprise for couples”, he concludes.