Real Deal: How NJ restaurants are preparing for the busy Memorial Day weekend

Talula's in Asbury Park uses the app Resy to coordinate their requests and recommends it to their customers.

News 12 Staff

May 5, 2023, 11:23 AM

Updated 442 days ago


Memorial Day Weekend, the unofficial start to the summer season, is just three weeks away! The weekend is a great chance to dine out with friends, family, and make some Jersey memories. So how are restaurants preparing for an active summer season ahead? After jumping 31% in January year-over-year, reservations for all New Jersey restaurants for the spring season stayed flat, according to Open Table. This reflects a population that decided to stay home after the holidays. "February and March are always very difficult months. For restaurants in this area especially,” said Shanti Mignogna, the owner of Talula’s in Asbury Park.  
The staff at Talula's getting ready for busy summer months. Making a reservation ensures you and your party of peace of mind, knowing you'll get the restaurant and the time you want. Open Table and Eat App are popular reservations apps. Talula's uses the APP Resy to coordinate their requests and recommends it to their customers.
But be aware, more and more restaurants are charging a fee of up to $10 per person for failure to cancel then not showing up. "Being able to kind of expect how much we can generate or how many we can expect on a given night. The biggest thing is just show up for your reservation,” Mignogna said. Overall, the number of dining options in New Jersey is exploding with more restaurants than there have been in years. "Every county we track in New Jersey actually added more restaurants today than they had before the pandemic. In Hudson County alone, they are 13% more restaurants than there were in 2019," said Caleb Silver of financial media website Investopedia. Mignogna says the key is keeping her investment relevant in an increasingly competitive industry. "There's enough people for everyone, and the amount of residential buildings going up here, the number of people moving to town is just increasing so new restaurants don't really bother me,” Mignogna said.  
One-third of U.S. diners are eating out more than they did six months ago, and 44% of diners in the nation are looking for a multi-course meal to celebrate Mother's Day next weekend.

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