The Grill and Island Bar puts more choices on menu

Grilled romaine salad from The Grill and Island Bar at the Taste of Folly. Photo by Marie Rodriguez

“Consumer customization is not new, but it continues to be a strong driver,” a senior director of product innovation at food trend forecaster Technomic, Inc. recently told Food Business News. “Customers want it how they want it, when they want it.”

The Grill and Island Bar at Folly Beach is now testing that report with its new menu, which is largely sorted into proteins and cooking styles. The entrée section, for example, includes preparations centered on grilled vegetables and rice; tri-colored potato and succotash and Thai chile noodles with edamame. It’s up to customers to choose one, and match it to seabass, mahi, tuna, shrimp, pork shanks, strip steak or chicken.

Flatbreads, tacos and salads are presented in similar fashion.

“Guests (can) build their own dishes that are tailored specifically to their tastes,” operating partner of The Grill and Island Bar, Jason Craig, is quoted as saying in a release announcing the new menu.

As the expert quoted by Food Business News said, the concept of deciding between shrimp and chicken as a salad add-on isn’t exactly novel: Burger King started urging customers to “have it your way” back in 1974. (The slogan was resurrected in 2004, and killed off 10 years later.)

According to Food Business News, customization is still riding high because customers see choices as a way to exert control over their diets.

McDonald’s last year started testing a concept in which customers can choose their own burger toppings. The strategy was inspired by burrito giant Chipotle, which is on the cusp of opening its first Charleston location.

The Grill and Island Bar is located at 41 Center Street on Folly Beach. For more information, call 633-0143 or visit follygrill.com.