Golf Food and Beverage Hits & Misses
Food and beverage operations are often difficult to manage profitably at many country clubs. There’s usually a lot of outside competition with local restaurants, sports bars, and dining establishments.
Outside of alcohol sales, many F&B operations operate in the red – but it doesn’t need to be that way.
It’s Not Your Typical High End Restaurant
Country clubs usually look to hire a renowned chef from a local prestigious restaurant as their food and beverage director. This can be a great strategy – but it can also backfire.
Golf food and beverage operations are not at all like your typical high-end restaurant. Golf course F&B demands versatility.
There may be a fine dining component at most clubs, but usually there are many dining outlets to attend to – a casual grill room, the halfway house, snack shop at pool, an on course beverage cart, employee meals, and other touch points.
We find that high-end chefs who are not made aware of the realities of the position can sometimes be put off by the concept of flipping burgers. They also may not have the requisite managerial or organizational experience in coordinating so many service outlets throughout the property.
The food and beverage department presents huge opportunity for cost containment in most clubs we consult with. Upon inspection, less tactful ordering processes and loose vendor relationships normally leave a lot of money on the table.
Problems like shrinkage and spoilage need to be evaluated for any operation to have a chance at profitability. In larger operations, close attention is required for ensuring quality control and appropriate service levels. F&B Directors have to be well-versed in point-of-sale systems, marketing initiatives, customer wants and needs, and other technologies as well.
“Your high-end chef may not be super excited about flipping burgers for the Friday men’s group. ”
Promoting Events & Weddings
Corporate events and weddings can be a huge source of revenue. This is a competitive sport however. Sometimes capital improvements are necessary, while in other instances some strategic growth marketing is the order of the day.
Bringing in quality sales managers and training the team how to market, sell and conduct high revenue events makes all the difference.
Golf clubs often have the advantage against many in their competitive set simply because of the beautiful surroundings. Photographically and aesthetically, country clubs are highly sought-after – but many are not prepared to compete for this business.
Cross-selling events into guest play or even membership sales also presents tremendous long term upside.