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How to Design a Bar Menu

Mix it up with classics, regional drinks, and a splash of originality

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We've used our many years of experience designing bar menus or menus with great cocktails to provide these design insights for your next menu. Just like a signature cocktail or traditional brew, the right ingredients and approach will mean menu success. By organizing your menu clearly, using fun descriptions and giving visual priority to your most profitable or signature items, customers will engage in a meaningful way, and often with the most premium items.

Follow these simple steps to create a menu that showcases and sells beer, cocktails, wines and other signature beverages.

1. Make sure drinks stand out on your menu.

Separating food and beverage items is important for a successful bar menu. Create a drinks section or page in your menu after or before food items to draw attention and provide a seamless ordering experience for your customers.

Make sure drinks stand out

2. Use a drinks menu when possible.

A standalone menu can encourage patrons to spend more time getting to know all the tasty beverages you offer and a table tent is a powerful table side tool to sell more where it counts most. Easily find the perfect size for your new bar menu from our wide variety of selections.

Use a drinks menu when possible

3. Use appropriate titles.

Sometimes your bar menu calls for no-fuss clarity, as when it comes to wines. Wine lists tend to be long, and customers tend to have existing affinities for their favorite wines, so straightforward organization with sections like “Pinot Noir” or “Chardonnay” are important. Alternatively, for a Cocktail Menu, customers may be looking for a new experience, something surprising. Show them how creative your bartender can be with playful names like Summer Dream or The Godfather. The time spent matching your drink titles to the customer mood will be well spent.

4. Use great photos.

Professional or high quality visuals show your beverages to their best advantage and set a standard of luxury for your brand. Good photos also cue cravings and prompt sales when customers see the best your establishment has to offer.

Use great photos

5. Spotlight your specials.

Use graphics, like a border or banner, to highlight your best items. Consider placing your most profitable or signature items at the top of your menu or calling them out with highlights so they can’t be missed. The Menu Maker's robust features require no previous design experience and allow users to add accents to any menu with ease.

Spotlight your specials

6. Get creative with copy.

Inventive or entertaining descriptions sell more product, enhances the experience and, most notably, helps to build your brand with a transferable enthusiasm that keeps customers coming back for more.

7. The right look makes a menu memorable.

Your logo, brand colors and a high contrast background or accents keep your menu on trend and exciting. With thousands of customizable themes, you can coordinate your beverage menu with your logo, glassware, or decor and swap themes easily with just one-click.

Make your menu memorable

With these steps in mind, start creating your new menu now! Our exclusive online menu maker requires no previous design experience and will empower you to create, control and make updates to your menu, on your schedule, at your convenience. Short on time? No problem. Use the MustHaveMenus design team to get bar menus you love!

When it comes to printing your bar menus, save yourself the hassle of trips to local printers. You can get press proofs and any type of menu printing done at MustHaveMenus with unmatched convenience. Our professional printing services will give you high-quality options that are affordable and easy.

Written by: Rebecca Olien