Dinner in a Pinch is celebrating their 2 year anniversary this month so we thought they were the perfect business to kick off our Merchant Spotlight.
Owner Sara Shaunnessey is offering up an alternative to pizza and Chinese food (though she admits a fondness for both those takeout staples) with her home-baked comfort food. Each order consists of an entree, two sides, and bread. All of the meals are cooked from scratch and made to order.
The allure of Dinner in a Pinch is their ability to serve up the meals people want to make, but just don’t have the time to. Their most popular dishes include crab cakes, pot roast, and stuffed pork chops. The success of Sara’s concept, as well as the popularity of her food, is illustrated by the number of repeat customers and overwhelmingly positive reviews.
In the two years she’s been in business, Sara said that the one thing that’s really surprised her is how much people like vegetables – who knew? She also said that customers are constantly surprised by how much bang for their buck they get. When you order from Dinner in a Pinch no one is going hungry.
Owning your own business isn’t without challenges, but Sara loves the experience. She spends her days experimenting with new dishes, getting to know customers, and doing something she’s passionate about.
Sara cited the sense of community among the local businesses in town as a huge benefit to being in Cranford. Dinner in a Pinch held a Fall Menu tasting this year and had free massages from The C.A.L.M. Approach, desserts from Cake Artist Cafe, and a giveaway from Fire Me Up Ceramics Studio.
Sara plans to hold another tasting later this year when she rolls out the Winter Menu. She also recently sent out a survey to customers and is currently working her way through the responses to see if there are any ways to improve. She is extremely active on Facebook and cites it as a great way to get additional feedback from customers, as well as to spread the word about specials and events. As Sara put it, “We want to be people’s go-to spot for dinner.”