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10 Secret Menu Mind Games

Jacky Hayward | Chef's Blade

The Anchor and What’s Right Next Door

Imagine seeing a $120 entree on a menu. The thought of purchasing that entree might cause you to gag before even getting your meal. Then, as you browse the rest of the menu, $40 an entree seems like a steal! The initial $120 entree is not necessarily being promoted, although some will most likely order it, it’s acting as a decoy to make the rest of the menu look like a bargain. Momfuku Noodle Bar recently added caviar as an anchor, as this robustly priced dish is called, to its inexpensive late night fare. In comparison with $10 to $16 entrees, this upwards of $100 side dish seems a bit flashy. But that might be just their point! In this case, the anchor serves not only to make the rest of the menu look like a steal, but it’s also that crazy thing that some customer might just order because it’s late at night, it’s Momofuku, and, hell, why not? (That’s a rhetorical question for the rest of us…)

6th Mind Game: Bracketing→