Why It’s So Hard to Let Go of the Menu

In addition to offering a short history of the menu (Delmonico’s printed the first one in the U.S.), Bruno Maddox issues an eye-misting paean to menus in the new issue of Travel + Leisure. Here’s what we’ll now be telling our tablemates when they scold us for taking our sweet time before ordering.

A good menu, by its nature, is pleasure incarnate. It stands as proof, or at least a defiant declaration, that while dreams, beauty, and experience are fleeting and pointless to try and hold on to, on their ethereal passage through this brutal world they can at least leave some physical trace. And no wonder, then, that the menu inspires us to indecision, that something inside us doesn’t want to make a choice. The menu is a list of dreams, and there is no more deadly natural predator for dreams than the awful human impulse to try and make them come true.

Meanwhile, Danny Meyer says the key to a great menu is to make “wording, pricing, font style, and layout all consistent with the experience you are already feeling.” Fair enough, but how do MenuPads play into this?

The Allure of Restaurant Menus [Travel + Leisure]

Why It’s So Hard to Let Go of the Menu