Prepare yourself with a surprising seasonal menu

Discover the best tips & tricks from chef Stefan Richter about an effective holiday menu planning. 

The most wonderful time of the year

Stefan’s Steakhouse has seven outlets and there are plans for even more. As an owner, Stefan believes good preparations are key to business success during the holidays: “This time of the year is important for my company, my customers, and for me personally as a father. You want to make sure you celebrate in the kitchen as well as at home. Good preparations let you do just that: we focus on staff training, product orders, and our menus in the months leading up to the holidays.

Create a seasonal menu

Stefan is a strong believer in varied menus. He changes them each season. “Our holiday menus are suited for large parties and are as seasonal as can be. As per tradition, we always add Rudolf to the menu over here and make sure the menu reflects the restaurant decorations. My main advice to chefs is to create a seasonal menu. Don’t use asparagus or strawberries in winter, for example. Winter vegetables, like root veggies, are less expensive in season and the right choice for your menu.”

A well-oiled machine

Stefan focuses on running his restaurants as smoothly as possible: from the menu to the kitchen, everything should be in order. “In the kitchen, we are a well-oiled machine. The times when the kitchen and front-of-house didn’t communicate are over. We are one solid team, and we need to be during those busy days!”

Stefan Richter

Stefan Richter became a well-known chef after participating in Top Chef, a TV cooking competition. As a businessman, he has opened restaurants in the United States and Stefan’s Steakhouse in his native Finland. These seven restaurants (more to come!) are part of the NOHO group.

Stefans Stakehouse-350

It’s the season for foodservice!

The Holidays are a great time for your guests, but they may be a bit less relaxed for foodservice professionals. So much to do, so little time! Here are some tools to help you get ready without worrying or missing any essentials.




Whole yearCollect inspiration (Tip: Most chefs use the internet or have dinner with colleagues to discuss ideas!)
SeptemberProduct orientation and menu creation
OctoberCommunicate your menu to guests trough your website, newsletter and social media
October/NovemberAdd matching drinks to your menu

Cooking trials (Tip: Have your smartphone or camera at hand

during cooking trials for your social media promotions!)

NovemberPurchase/Order products with a long shelf life
14 DecemberFinal long shelf life purchases
20 DecemberPurchase fresh products
21 DecemberMise en place
22/23 December

Prepare front-of-house (decoration, music, setting) (Tip: Decide early if

you want to have festive uniforms, decoration, and Christmas music!)

Christmas Eve up to New Year’s DayReady to rumble!

Did you know?

A lot of restaurants offer a special menu during the Holidays. 38% Offers a special menu on Christmas Eve, 94% on Christmas Day, and 79% offers a special menu on the Second Day of Christmas.

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