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Create an A La Carte Menu

How to use our new V2 Menu Module for A La Carte Menu perfection

Stephen Kuhn avatar
Written by Stephen Kuhn
Updated over a week ago

Read Time: 10 minutes

First, find out if you should create a Fixed Price or A La Carte Menu. Once you choose if you will make an A La Carte or Fixed Price, you can't switch to a different Menu Type.

Refer to Menu Terms for further details on different aspects of the Menu Module.

Read more about how to create a Fixed Price Menu or how to make a new Menu by Duplicating a similar one.

Click Here to View the Video Tutorials

What is an A La Carte Menu?

An A La Carte Menu is a Menu in which each Item is ordered individually. These typically include Desserts, Beverages, or Sides in which a Customer chooses one of many available options.

Setting It Up

  1. Start at the Dashboard.

  2. Click the Menu Module.

  3. In the Menu Module, click Add Menu.

  4. Choose A La Carte in the pop-up. Once chosen, the Menu Type cannot be changed.

Details Tab

At the top left corner, you can see that the Menu Type is listed as A La Carte.

The Details Tab, is highlighted in Orange at the top of the page. In the Details Tab, fill in all necessary information that pertains to how a Customer can view and order the Menu.

If you click Save at the top right corner, all of boxes that are necessary to fill in highlight in red. This is a great way to know what aspects of a Menu are essential before you can allow Customers to order from it.

Left Column - The Essential Details

Watch the short video below for a tutorial on setting up the Left Column of the Details Tab:

The Left Column is where you enter the necessary details to order a Menu.

Menu Name

Required to enter the name of the Menu.

Menu Description

Enter any necessary details that the Customers can read online. You might note if the Menu is packaged a specific way or priced individually or for a group. Don’t make the Description too long, as it takes up too much space on the Online Ordering Page. It should be the essential information and no longer than 500 characters.

It's not required to add a Menu Image, but it will make your site look much better!

During Menu Setup, Spoonfed offers a variety of stock images that can be used to entice Customers to the Menu. If you have your own food images you’d like to use, this is also a great way to demonstrate what’s served!

  1. Click Add Image.

  2. In the Box that appears, click ‘Choose a File’.

  3. Select the image file you want to add to your menu.

  4. Once the file is chosen, click Upload.

  5. The image will show up on the left hand side now.

Menu Code

  • Required to input so that you can find the Menu in accounting reports.

  • Menu Code indicates the name and track when it was created and for which location or event.

  • We recommend naming the code with the first letter of each word in the Menu Name. Then, include the date you created the menu. If a Menu is available for a specific Location or Event, put an abbreviation for that here.

  • In this Sides example, the code is S - 4/23.

Required to place the Menu in a Category. This makes it easier to sort on the Online Ordering Site and in Back Office Orders.

Required Menu

If selected, a Customer won’t be able to place an Order for any other Menu or Checkout unless they have also ordered this Menu. In most cases, we don’t make Menus required.

A filled in Left Column of an A La Carte Menu might look like this:

Menu Availability - When and Who Can Order

Watch the short video for a tutorial on adding Availability Details:

Read here for a more detailed descriptions of setting up Menu Availability, Lead Times, and Menu Notice Periods.

Can Be Ordered Online

Check ‘Can Be Ordered Online’ so that a Customer can view and Order the Menu on the Online Ordering Site. If not checked, the Menu won’t be visible for Customers to order from on the Online Ordering Site. You can still Order from it as a Back Office User. Read how your Customers can place and manage Online Orders.

Widget Availability

If you have two different Order Flows or Online Ordering Sites, this indicates if Menu can be ordered on one or the other or both.

Delivery Availability

Is this Menu available to order for Delivery, Pick-Up, or Both? By Default, it's available for both, unless you only have one option set up.

If the menu has a Lead Time or Cut-Off Time different from the Default, select that in the Notice Period drop down box.

  • Indicates a specific date range or time frame by which a menu is visible and able to be Ordered. If you set a date/time range, the Menu can only be viewed Online and/or in the Back Office if the Order is placed within that date/time range.

  • The first box is the Date Range. You don’t have to have a closed Date Range. You might only select a “start at” or “end by” date. Choose dates on the calendar in the drop down.

  • The box below, Time Range, allows a daily range when the Menu is available. It's useful for time specific Menus like Breakfast or Evening Events.

  • Click Clear to remove the Date Range.

Available Days

Here you can make your Menu available for only certain days of the week. You might only want to sell a certain Menu on weekdays or weekends. As you select each day, it shows up in an Orange Box to the right.

Click the ‘x’ in each box to remove that day.

If certain Customers are selected, only Contacts logged in under that Customer are able to view and order from the Menu. Always allocate the Menu to your Back Office Test Customer for test orders and Back Office Users. Otherwise your team might not be able to view the menu.

Click the x near the box to remove the Customer Allocation.

Choose one Location or Site for the Menu to be available for if you have multiple Branches or Sites set up. If your Sites have different Tax Rates or different Menus across Locations, this option allows you to make the Menu visible only if that Location is selected.

Save Progress

Once all the Details are entered, click Save. Always Save your progress before switching between Tabs. Once Saved, a Green Bar will appear at the top right screen indicating that the Menu was Saved.

A Completed Details Tab might look like this:

Items Tab

Watch the short video below for a tutorial on using the Items Tab:

Read a more detailed explanation of adding Items in A La Carte Menus Here.

  1. Click the Items Tab.

  2. Click Add Section.

Add Section

  1. A Section organizes and categorizes different components of a Menu. Filling in the Section Name DOES NOT create a Menu Item.

  2. Add the Section Name.

  3. Fill in the Name and No of Portions Per Person (box in the right hand side). Check 'Allow Bespoke Items' to allow the option to customize the Item in the Back Office.

This is not where to add a Menu Item. In an A La Carte Menu, the Section is used to categorize different parts Items in the Menu. A Sides Menu might be divided by Sections of Fries, Salads, and Fruit.

Once Section Details are entered, click 'Add Item' in orange.

Add Item to Section

Enter the Item Name in the given box. If you've previously used or entered the Item in the system, a drop down will show all the options for you to select and auto-fill.

Otherwise, click Add New Item.

Add New Item

Watch the short video below for a tutorial on adding a new Item from the Menu:

  1. Click Food for a Food Item.

  2. Enter the necessary details and any other information that you want you Customers to know about the Item.

  3. You must input an Item Name, Item Type, and Price.

    1. The Item Type is a way to categorize stations that make the Item or help to run inventory and sales Reports.

Price and Tax Code

For an A La Carte Menu Item, enter the Price. The Tax Code automatically fills in the Default Tax Code you have set up. If this Menu needs a different tax code, change it in the indicated box.

An Item Description is for Customers to read any details about the food on the Online Ordering Site.

Production Notes are for the kitchen staff to view when making the order. They can also include anything about how to make the food which could be useful in Production. These notes will show up on the Production Reports in the Production Module.

Note that Customers can't see Production Notes and Kitchen Staff can't see the Item Description.

Portions and Energy Value

Read more about inputting calories and nutritional values.

If enabled, this allows you to indicate measurements, caloric values, and portion sizes.

Speak with a Spoonfed Customer Success Partner to find out how to enable this feature.

Enter the nutritional information and calories for each A La Carte Item.

When all the Details are entered, click Save.

To add more Items, click Add Item again.

If an Item is already added to the system, it will show up in the drop down list to select. This makes Menu entry much easier as you add more Menu Items!

If not auto-added, enter the Price of the Item under the Price Column.

Min and Max Quantity

  • Under the Min Qty and Max Qty Columns, set minimum or maximum order requirements.

  • If you price the Menu individually, rather than as a large group, you might not want to make an entire catering order for only a few people.

  • The Minimum allows you to indicate that a Customer must order a certain amount of the Menu before they can place the Order. A Minimum set to 10 won’t let the Customer order the menu unless they select at least that amount. The same rules apply to the Max Order amount.

  • If you have a Min or Max set on the menu, include this in the description so that Customers are better aware of the requirement.

Click Save once all the items have been added. You must click Save every time you need to move on to a New Section. If you edit one section and go to edit another, the progress will be lost if you did not first save the progress.

A finished A La Carte Items Section will look like this:

Click 'Expand All' to view all the Items in every Section.

View on the Online Ordering Page

Watch the short video below to see how Menu looks on the Online Ordering Site:

Online Ordering Version 2.0

Online Ordering Version 3.0

After you’ve added all the Items to be included in the Menu, it’s best practice to view the Menu on the Online Ordering site.

Read here to learn how your Customers can place an Order Online with Spoonfed.

A finished A La Carte Menu on looks like this on the Online Ordering Site.

That is how to create an A La Carte Menu!

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