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Home Design with Kevin Sharkey

New Years Resolution: Organizing Restaurant Take-Out Menus

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While living in New York City I have collected a variety of take-out and delivery menus -- which come in handy to have when I am indecisive about where I should eat out.

After shopping at The Meadow a couple of days ago, I went home and poured my new salts into their own little cellars on my kitchen counter. Then I took a closer look at my kitchen and determined what needed some sprucing up.

I came across a cabinet stuffed with cookbooks, kitchen appliance warranties, and a binder of take-out and delivery menus that was completely unorganized.

I am determined this year to keep this cabinet tidy. As I began to organize my three-ring binder of menus, I realized how useful this book is going to be. The binder is a bright orange color --  it stands out on a shelf full of books. The menus are individually tucked into their own clear plastic protector sheet that can clip into the binder easily. They are placed in order by categories: French, American, Thai, Japanese, Chinese, Greek, Burgers, Pizza, Italian, and Mexican. After adding new menus to the binder I decided that organizing by categories wasn't enough -- so I added tabs to help me quickly flip to the section of "Japanese" food if I am craving sushi.

Take a look inside of my take-out/delivery binder. I think the appliance warranties may be next to organize...

Back
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My cookbooks and warranties were all thrown into a kitchen cabinet.

1 My cookbooks and warranties were all thrown into a kitchen cabinet.

The entire cabinet with the warranties, cookbooks, and you can see my take out menu binder on the lower right.

2 The entire cabinet with the warranties, cookbooks, and you can see my take out menu binder on the lower right.

The outside of my take-out/deliver menu binder.

3 The outside of my take-out/deliver menu binder.

I have the spine of the binder labeled. The bright color makes it easy to find too.

4 I have the spine of the binder labeled. The bright color makes it easy to find too.

You can see how thick my menu binder is getting.

5 You can see how thick my menu binder is getting.

I made labels for the different categories of food -- I also have those pages as well as the menus in a plastic protector.

6 I made labels for the different categories of food -- I also have those pages as well as the menus in a plastic protector.

The first page of the binder: Pizza.

7 The first page of the binder: Pizza.

Another section of the binder is Italian.

8 Another section of the binder is Italian.

I Tre Merli -- an Italian bistro in the West Village, behind that take-out menu is Pepe Verde's menu.

9 I Tre Merli -- an Italian bistro in the West Village, behind that take-out menu is Pepe Verde's menu.

Mario Batali's restaurant -- Otto. For the double sided menus, it is nice to have the menu in a clear plastic protector so you can flip the page and see the back of the menu.

10 Mario Batali's restaurant -- Otto. For the double sided menus, it is nice to have the menu in a clear plastic protector so you can flip the page and see the back of the menu.

The start of the Mexican section of the binder.

11 The start of the Mexican section of the binder.

An amazing spot to grab Tacos in New York City is at La Esquina!

12 An amazing spot to grab Tacos in New York City is at La Esquina!

The first page that introduces the french menus -- Pastis is one of the restaurants in the binder.

13 The first page that introduces the french menus -- Pastis is one of the restaurants in the binder.

What's more American than french fries?

14 What's more American than french fries?

I had to put a fortune cookie on the Chinese food page.

15 I had to put a fortune cookie on the Chinese food page.

Olives for Greek cuisine.

16 Olives for Greek cuisine.

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Comments (6)

  • Very interesting and organized! love it. Sending you some sushi from Sakura Japanese restaurant! took this pic while there http://twitpic.com/3nsl57
    Wish you a wonderful weekend!

  • I keep my take out menus organized in a clear plastic document holder in the drawer closest to the phone in the kitchen. Last night I went through my cook books and decided which ones to donate...I have too many!

  • Kevin, I have done the exact same organizing with my menus except I've done it electronically: in my bookmarks I've created folders organized by cuisine with the menu page of the restaurants' website bookmarked. It's just a couple of clicks and with your browsers multiple tabs, you can click back and forth between menus if having a hard time deciding. So easy and clutter is gone!

  • FYI - you can get these menus on-line now, eliminating your need for papers!

  • Love the notebook! Where is it from?

  • I like the way you did this. I have gone a step further and have scanned the menus I keep and then look at them in my iPad or iPhone as the original folder fell on the floor a few times and the sheets fell out!

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