World of Beer Has Big Impact on Promenade Businesses
You don't even have to stop drinking. Just flip through World of Beer's 14-page menu, place your order, and wait for your food to arrive.
Given the diversity of dining options at the Promenade, the arrangement works out better than if World of Beer had a kitchen of its own. According to General Manager Dereck Eldred, most, but not all of the restaurants in the Promenade have signed up to be a part of the service. There are even two eateries outside of the shopping mall, Pasqualle's Pizza and Medellin Colombian Restaurant, that are also delivering.
"Customers love it," says Eldred. "Let's say you're on a date and the woman wants sushi and the guy wants pizza: It's done. You don't have to get up from your seat to eat or anything. You can just hang out and party and they'll bring it right to you."
But beer drinkers aren't the only ones benefiting from this arrangement. Many other Promenade businesses are seeing a sharp increase in customers thanks to the arrival of the craft beer bar.
Jamie Maltese, co-owner of 160 Degrees/Muffuletta Sicilian Sub House, says the bar has had a big impact on his business. "Sales, for us especially, have been very good," says Maltese, whose restaurant is located next door to World of Beer. "We've never stayed open past 9 p.m. in the past year that we've been in business. But now we're open until midnight on every night except for Sundays, sending food over to the bar."
At the opposite end of the Promenade, fast-casual restaurant Lime Fresh Mexican Grill is also seeing a boom in business since the bar arrived. "In general, we've been increasing our numbers each year," says Lime General Manager Aaron Atkins. "But since [WoB] has opened, we've seen an influx in orders, especially toward the end of the night."
160/Muffuletta has had staff running orders back and forth from 6 p.m. to midnight for the past few weeks. The move, says Maltese, has allowed his restaurant to take orders and zip them back and forth with even greater efficiency.
For Lime, a partial-service restaurant without any real wait staff, the process has been much more experimental.
"This is a totally new thing for us, actually having a person over there to approach tables and take orders," says Atkins. "We'll probably use a walkie-talkie to relay orders and are toying with the idea of a portable credit card swipe to make the process easier."
Atkins says figuring out the right formula could mean better business in the long run, both for his store and other Limes. Case in point: The Tampa-based World of Beer already has another location planned in the Dadeland Mall. And wouldn't you know it -- it's right next door to a Lime.
No matter how the service works out in the long run, Atkins is happy how the arrangement with World of Beer has worked out so far.
"Let's put it this way," he says. "They're a dream neighbor for a restaurant."