Where to Eat
The first thing we want to talk about in this course is how to help visitors to Centre County solve a common need. Everybody has to eat.
Land of Plenty
We have a lot of restaurants in Centre County, ranging from nationwide fast food chains to intimate cosmopolitan fine dining establishments. We have restaurants housed in historic structures and breweries built in new state-of-the-art facilities. There are restaurants that can handle busloads of people and small, quaint cafes offering simple, quiet comfort.
Pennsylvania’s unique approach to alcohol licensing means that only permitted businesses can sell alcohol. This sometimes comes as a surprise to visitors from other states and countries. If your customer is interested in anything beyond fast food, the desire to have an adult beverage with their meal may be worthy of consideration in any recommendation.
If so, we have restaurants here that serve wine, fully stocked bars that serve food, and some places that focus on the wide varieties of alcoholic beverages from around the world with a lesser focus on food.
Getting to a recommendation
One of the most common questions visitors to our region ask is:
“Where can I get something to eat?”
Sounds simple enough, but there are a lot of possibilities hidden in that question, and a lot of potential answers. When being asked for a recommendation, you should dig into the question before offering a suggestion or two.
Start with qualifying questions like:
“What kind of atmosphere are you looking for?”
This will lead to a category of dining experience that can help you make a recommendation.
“Are you looking for fast food, casual dining, or a fine dining experience?”
This is another way of instantly whittling the options down to a more manageable number. Once you have the experiential category determined, it's time to get to their culinary preferences.
“What kind of food do you like?”
People might respond with American, Italian, or Chinese, but they may also respond with something more specific like pizza, burgers and fries, or hot wings.
Once you know the answers to these questions, you should be able to make some good recommendations. It is generally not considered good form to ask how much money people have, but you can indicate price ranges if the customer seeks that information. Usually, the customer's other answers will lead you past this obstacle.
Lastly, the location of the restaurant is important for many people. Is it close? Does it require a vehicle to get there? Is there parking nearby?
These are all good things to know before making a recommendation.
Know the Options
The best way to be prepared to make a recommendation is to know what’s out there!
We'll provide a list of restaurants in our county with their category, price ranges, food type and location so you can acquire the knowledge base necessary to help your customers find what they need.
Let’s take a look at what Centre Country has to offer in four categories of atmosphere: Fast Food, Casual Dining, Fine Dining, and Tavern Fare. As we go, we’ll talk about what those categories mean.Next Page: Dining Options - Fast Food