The editor's column in last month's issue stated, "It's our opinion that new community-based leisure businesses shouldn't even open if they're not interested in taking food seriously and making it a significant part of their business -- between 30% and 50% of revenues. Yes, that's right. Without quality food, you won't have the formula for success. You need quality food to drive frequency, often more so than the entertainment."
We received a reply from Frank Sirre, former general manager of The Enchanted Castle in Chicago, who is now general manager of New Roc City in New Rochelle, NY. We hope Frank doesn't mind us reprinting it here, as it corroborates our rather bold statement that probably surprised some people in the entertainment industry.
Frank wrote: "As someone who came into the Entertainment Industry from full service food and beverage, I was very interested in your current newsletter. The only reason I came into the Entertainment Industry was that I was hired on by Harold Skripsky and Gary Isner to bring their food service to a new level at The Enchanted Castle. When we were acquired by 'Disease Zone' in 1994, we were given the responsibility, but unfortunately not the proper authority, to move DZ to their next level in food service and entertainment. One thing that we did at The Castle, and this was a compilation between Gary, Harold, Elena Ruane and myself, was to develop a tag-line: Come for the FOOD and stay for THE FUN!"
Thanks, Frank. There's no question food was a driver of The Enchanted Castle's success.