Downtown Syracuse Restaurants Reflect on Dining Weeks Promotion

Mar 3, 2015

Syracuse’s 11th Annual Downtown Dining Weeks have produced mixed results for some of the participating restaurants. 

While Lemon Grass sold almost twice as much as it did during last year’s event, other restaurants weren’t as fortunate. Dining Weeks, which featured 27 restaurants, officially closed on March 1, but some places will extend their promotion to attract more customers. 

This year, Lemon Grass offered discounted prices on its entire menu, said Owner Max Chutinthranond. Events like this boost local businesses and promote the city because they bring new people to the area, which is critical, he said. 

Modern Malt, which opened in downtown Syracuse a few weeks ago, saw increased traffic during Downtown Dining Weeks.
Credit John Smith, WAER News

“Introduce this area to people that have never been here, create more income, make more circulation of money,” Chutinthranond said. “And they did everything this year. This is the best year.” 

Modern Malt, which opened only a few weeks ago, participated in the event for the first time.  General Manager Chris Bily found the promotion a great opportunity to introduce his restaurant’s menu. During the event, he said, his restaurant has seen more business than on its opening day.

“I’m hoping that these first-time customers that come and check us out are going to turn into, you know, second and third-time, fourth-time and fifth-time customers,” he said.

Some restaurants didn’t do as well due to the harsh weather.  In its second year participating in the event, Small Plates, which opened in 2013, didn’t get the expected boost, said manager Andrew Belair. He and others are tacking on another week, where patrons can get a three-course meal for $25.  “We’re a little off from last year, so that’s another reason we decided to extend it,” Belair said.