I love periodicals probably as much as I love blogs. When I have a doctor’s appointment, I sometimes go early so I can catch up on my reading.

But no medical appointment is necessary now; the inn has plenty of magazines for me to peruse, including some restaurant and lodging trade publications not carried by my doctor or my dentist.

One restaurant magazine, Santé had a feature article in their May issue called “Sarah’s: Succeeding In Tough Times.” Sarah and Bernard Bouissou own Bernard’s Restaurant in Ridgefield Connecticut. It’s an upscale place with great food that was doing well until the recession hit.

The Bouissous have since done a little reinventing in the way of opening Sarah’s Wine Bar on the upper (and mostly unused) floor of their restaurant.

In doing so, they:

  • made use of previously unused space.
  • attracted more casually dressed and younger diners.
  • found a way to use the slow moving wine in their restaurant as specials in the wine bar.
  • became a place in the community as a destination to hold non-stuffy book club meetings.
  • helped local nonprofit groups by offering wine tasting fundraisers ($10 a head, in cooperation with a local wine store) every other Wednesday night (traditionally a slow night)

This magazine also talked about how other restaurants were for example cutting portion sizes to cut prices and in other ways offering diners an eating out experience while lowering the price.

Have you noticed any changes in your local restaurant scene lately?