Project image
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$4,191
pledged of $100,000pledged of $100,000 goal
35
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Thu, September 1 2016 6:31 PM UTC +00:00
$4,191
pledged of $100,000pledged of $100,000 goal
35
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Thu, September 1 2016 6:31 PM UTC +00:00

About

Concept and Mission

I opened Raclette NYC in February 2015 as a humble "labour-of-love" spot serving classic, authentic raclette dishes and other European comfort foods at modest prices. While New York offered a limitless number of quick-casual options for certain types of cuisine -- pizza, Chinese, Korean, Mexican, Indian and deli food, to name a few -- it lacked restaurants that offered classic French and European comfort fare at affordable price points in casual settings. Having lived in Europe for most of the naughts and gotten used to walking to the corner bistro for a quick and delicious croque or tartine, or enjoying Raclette in the homes of my friends, I felt deprived of these things when I finally landed back in New York. Raclette's mission is to bring delicious, authentic and classically prepared raclettes, croques and tartines to the American public at an everyday price.

Public Reaction and Acceptance 

The reaction to the food and restaurant was swift and overwhelmingly positive. Within the first few weeks of opening, the restaurant was featured in New York Magazine, which stated that Raclette "takes melted cheese to the next level," and described our tartines as "spectacular," "elegant and eclectic." The New York Times dubbed our raclette dishes "deeply satisfying," and the Wall Street Journal called our croque monsieur "one of the best out there." Gothamist called Raclette "The Melted Cheese Restaurant You've been Dreaming About," while New York Magazine named our spot one of the best for Cheap Eats in 2015. Time Out New York named our Raclette Savoyarde one of the 100 best dishes of the year, and The Village Voice honored Raclette with its award for Best Restaurant in the East Village in its Diamond Anniversary Best of NYC issue. A viral video of Raclette NYC's signature dish composed by Business Insider has been viewed more than 87 million times, and has attracted thousands of visitors from the world over, many of whom book months in advance to ensure they garner one of NYC's most sought after dining reservations.

These accolades have been mirrored in customer feedback and community acceptance. Among the most oft repeated compliments we have received are those concerning the authenticity of the preparation and ingredients, the freshness of the food, the uniqueness and beauty of our presentation and the reasonable price points. We have introduced hundreds of people to traditionally prepared raclettes and croques, and to tartines that venture more towards the whimsical side, and have given many a French and Swiss expat a classic taste of home that they have chosen to experience time and time again. I am constantly and pleasantly surprised when I hear from customers that our little, low-key Raclette is their favorite restaurant in all of New York City. We work our very hardest every day to live up to such an honor.

Continuation and Expansion

With our success has grown the desire to share the Raclette experience with a greater number of visitors, and to enable more of the NYC public to learn that delicious, authentic and freshly prepared European-style food need not be a once-in-a-blue-moon proposition. We completed a small renovation in 2015 that doubled our seating from seven to 14 and allowed us to install a customer restroom. Although created on the thinnest of shoestrings, the current space has been described by customers as "cozy," "intimate," "convivial," "elegant," and even "beautiful." But we have received an equal amount of feedback stating that it is too small for those who wish to enjoy a meal with large groups of friends. We have also been privy to the frustrations of many regulars who complain they cannot dine in the restaurant as frequently as they would like and those of walk-in visitors who often face hours-long wait times for a table.

We recently instituted an online reservation system and implemented other models such as prepaid, all-inclusive ticketed seatings, all in an effort to maximize the number of people we can accomodate. Alas, even with these improvements, we are unable to serve scores of people who would like to come to Raclette on any given day. Moreover, we believe the comfort of customers can be much improved by expanding and improving the dining space. We have identified and begun steps to acquire a currently-vacant restaurant space within half a block of Raclette's present location that would enable us to triple the number of customers we can seat at a time, while enhancing their comfort through the allowance of a greater amount of space per diner and a better climate control and ventilation system.

This project is all about giving Raclette's customers the first-class experience they desire and deserve. We believe customers both present and future would love to have a space to which they can come time and again, and enjoy an exceptional meal in a friendly setting that is at once comfortable and elegant.

Risks and challenges

The restaurant business is composed of many moving parts, all of which have to work in sync for the venture to thrive. Some of the common risks involved in this project, as with any restaurant, include delays with renovations, equipment malfunctions and hiccups in the regulatory and licensing process.

Having operated a successful and extremely high-volume restaurant in the same neighborhood as the potential new dining room, we feel we are uniquely qualified to ensure that these risks are minimized.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    Personalized "thank-you" postcard

    Postcard with Raclette dish photo and logo in front and owner/chef's thank you note and handwritten signature in back

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    One-scrape raclette

    "One-scrape" to-go raclette dish with roasted potatoes, one scrape of French raclette, cornichons and pickled pearl onions, redeemable in person anytime and transferable

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    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    Raclette NYC branded coffee mug

    Ceramic coffee mug, with Raclette NYC logo and quote from Robert Louis Stevenson III in "Treasure Island": “Well, many's the long night I've dreamed of cheese--toasted, mostly...”

    Includes:
    • Raclette NYC mug
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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Front of line pass for 2

    Single use for party of two: you may walk in anytime and be seated within 20 minutes, or make an advance reservation via email and be seated for any dinner or lunch service (within a one-hour time window of your preferred time); this reward may be substituted with a tartine and a beverage, should a front-of-line pass be unnecessary at the time of redemption

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    Pledge $35 or more About $35

    Original Raclette NYC T-Shirt

    First-run, all cotton Raclette NYC Logo Tee, with quote from Robert Louis Stevenson III in "Treasure Island": “Well, many's the long night I've dreamed of cheese--toasted, mostly...”

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Raclette logo T-shirt and mug set

    Raclette NYC branded logo t-shirt and ceramic coffee mug set, with quote from Robert Louis Stevenson III in "Treasure Island": “Well, many's the long night I've dreamed of cheese--toasted, mostly...”

    Includes:
    • Raclette NYC logo t-shirt
    • Raclette NYC mug
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    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    Meal for two with front-of-the-line pass

    "Le Chalet" meal for two in Raclette's new dining room, redeemable any time, subject to advance reservation; includes: a) "Le Chalet" (charcuterie or roasted vegetables) with unlimited scrapes of three types of cheeses b) four beverages; c) all corkage fees, gratuities and service charges

    Includes:
    • One-time giftable line pass: priority reservation or walk-in
    • Raclette NYC logo t-shirt
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    Pledge $400 or more About $400

    Meal for four with priority reservation

    Complimentary "Le Chalet" meal for four at Raclette redeemable any time, subject to advance reservation; includes: a) "Le Chalet" (charcuterie or roasted vegetable options) with unlimited scrapes of three types of cheeses b) four beverages; c) all corkage fees, gratuities and service charges

    Includes:
    • Priority advance reservation
    • Raclette NYC logo t-shirt
    • Raclette NYC mug
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    Pledge $800 or more About $800

    Meal for 10 with priority reservation

    Chef's table meal for 10 at Raclette redeemable any time with priority reservation; includes: a) "Le Chalet" menu (charcuterie or roasted vegetables) with unlimited scrapes of three types of cheeses; b) 10 beverages; c) all corkage fees, gratuities and service charges

    Includes:
    • Priority advance reservation
    • 10× Raclette NYC logo t-shirt
    • 10× Raclette NYC mug
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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Founder's Club

    One engraved brass plaque and commemorative brick permanently displayed on a highly visible "Founder's Wall" to be located within the newly expanded restaurant dining room.

    Includes:
    • Lifetime front-of-line pass: non-transferable
    • One-time chef's table for four in Raclette's new dining room
    • Souvenir video of founder posted on Raclette's social media & web
    • 10× One-time giftable line pass: priority reservation or walk-in
    • Raclette NYC logo t-shirt
    • Raclette NYC mug
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    Pledge $2,500 or more About $2,500

    Founder's Club Emeritus

    One VIP meal for two (transferable) per month for one year

    Includes:
    • VIP dinner for two, each month for one year all charges included
    • One time chef's table meal for 6 in Raclette's new dining room
    • Lifetime front-of-line pass: non-transferable
    • Brass plaque with name and dedicated brick on founders' wall
    • Souvenir video of founder posted on Raclette's social media & web
    • Raclette NYC logo t-shirt
    • Raclette NYC mug
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Funding period

- (42 days)