- The 6 p.m. reservation is now the “most prized table” in New York, per restaurateur Danny Meyer.
- The commentary from the Shake Shack founder suggests the shift is right here to remain for some time longer.
- Meyer supplied three theories for the change, together with the social isolation of distant work.
Like sporting “hard pants” and commuting to an workplace day-after-day, “dinner at eight” more and more appears to be a relic of a bygone, pre-pandemic age.
“When did a 6:00 dinner reservation become the new 8:00, most prized table of the night — and will it last?” celebrated restaurateur Danny Meyer requested in a Wednesday publish on X, the social media community previously referred to as Twitter.
The thought began within the early weeks of the pandemic as business consultants like Steve Hafner, then-CEO of reservations platform OpenTable, predicted in a 2020 interview with Insider that reservations would probably pattern earlier.
And precisely one 12 months in the past, The New York Times Magazine remarked on the stunning fashionability of twilight eating, adopted in July by the Wall Street Journal detailing the lamentations of night time owls caught off-guard by the brand new schedule.
What is attention-grabbing right here is the observer: Meyer is the founding father of Shake Shack and the chairman of Union Square Hospitality Group, which owns a portfolio of a number of of New York’s favourite eating places like Gramercy Tavern, The Modern, and extra.
As Meyer’s eating places get well from the beating they took through the pandemic, some bigger developments seem to have modified the enterprise for the foreseeable future.
He adopted up his publish with three theories about what’s driving the early-bird phenomenon.
“Work from home contributes to social isolation. That’s why restaurant bars and seats are filling up ever earlier,” Meyer instructed.
He additionally mentioned the blurring of labor and private schedules signifies that extra folks have to get residence earlier to reply to emails and wrap up their “round the clock” workday.
Lastly, he cited what may very well be characterised as a distinct form of Netflix impact on the restaurant business: there’s “more entertainment content than ever to get home to,” he mentioned.
It’s additionally value noting that Meyer and his companies are in New York, which traditionally served the night meal a good bit later than the US common time for dinner of round 6:22 p.m.
“Eight o’clock is what was hot for New Yorkers,” Roni Mazumdar, a co-owner of the Indian restaurant Dhamaka, instructed the Times final 12 months.
“We’re going to see this trend go on for at least the next half-decade, if not longer,” he mentioned.