Foodie Specs: The Best Restaurant Menu Item Ever

By on Wednesday, October 17th, 2012

This is not a sponsored post. It is not an advertorial, if those even exist anymore. And no one at Toque is receiving any remuneration from Foodie Specs.

We just had to say something because we think Foodie Specs is the neatest innovation since the cup holder.

Foodie Specs is simply a brilliant business idea. Brilliant in its simplicity: sell packs of inexpensive reader glasses to restaurants. Offered as a courtesy to visually impaired patrons, Foodie Specs solve a huge problem for an aging population forgetful of its reading glasses but definitely willing to splurge on an extra bottle of wine in gratitude for the Biblical curing (“…and the blind will see through the gloom and darkness.”)

If you’ve ever sat down in a dimly lit bistro and realize you forgot your glasses, you will understand the utter genius of this idea.

Good food is important. Excellent service is paramount. A well-designed interior with comfortable seating, ample kitchen, attractive color palette and dishware that does the job with elegance are all elements of a successful restaurant. The prix fixe menu and the wine list ought to be well worth the visit. And it helps if patrons can see all of this.

If patrons cannot see all of this, you have a problem.

So problem solved with Foodie Specs. According to the company’s press release there are 65 million Americans fumbling for their reading glasses. “We believe there is a huge need for sanitary glasses by customers in restaurants who forget their reading glasses,” says co-founder Matt Gibson. “It’s really a simple idea: Restaurants and other businesses provide a great service when they offer a free pair of reading glasses to customers in need – no fuss, no cleaning the glasses, just happy customers.”

Specs come in packs of 10 for $19.99. This is a true startup. Company was launched the day of its press release (October 10) and the first sale happened at a pizza restaurant in Sonoma, California (go, Sonoma!) But Foodie Specs anticipates sales of “tens of thousands” of units through 2013. The company is handing out 300 promotional kits around Los Angeles and launches nationally in the next few weeks.

The only thing I might have done differently is the name. They probably underwent many, many hours of research to come up with Foodie Specs but personally I don’t care for the term “foodie.” So let me at it.

See Food

Menu Readers

Now You See It

Glasses for the Masses

Patron Specs

Eye Spy Menu Glasses

I used to dream of being a nail polish copy writer. Now I see my future in restaurant products like Foodie Specs.

Quite honestly, restaurants everywhere would do themselves a big favor by providing their customers with the ability to see the menu. It’s as simple as that. Anytime you have the power to help people in such a fundamental way, it’s tough to find reasons to pass. We will no doubt follow the progress of Foodie Specs and see a clear path to success in its future.

Written by Erika Kotite

Erika Kotite is an editor, writer and owner of Toque.

134 Comments

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