51 Examples of Excellent Restaurant Menu Design to Inspire You

 

Your menu is more than a simple list of the items your restaurant has to offer. Carefully thought out restaurant menu design can improve everything from your brand identity to your customer’s experience to your profits. In fact, good restaurant menu design can increase your profits by 10–15%

 

 

Ingredients of Good Menu Design

Creative restaurant menu design is a recipe for success and, just like the menu itself, should always be changing. So, we’ve put together a list of ingredients to make sure you achieve the best possible results whenever you’re ready for a refresh. As you sit down to plan out your menu design, consider each of the following: 

  • Placement and categories: You’ll want to keep your cost and sales data close at hand as you lay out your items into four quadrants (listed below), strategically drawing attention to items that are highly profitable but may not be as popular. 

    • Profitable x Popular 

    • Profitable x Not popular

    • Not profitable x Popular

    • Not profitable x Not popular  

  • Limited choices: For each menu category, the magic number is 7. Decision fatigue is a real thing. Too many options can be overwhelming and make people want to stick to what they know. 

  • The golden triangle: Speaking of strategy, make sure to include your high-margin items in the area known as the golden triangle. So where exactly is the golden triangle? According to restaurant consultant Aaron Allen, it starts at the center of the page and then works its way up to the top right corner and across to the top left.

 

 

 

  • Color theory: Have you ever been driving along the expressway and looked around at a sea of red and yellow fast food chain signs? It’s hardly a coincidence. The psychological impact of color on our appetites dates way back to our early ancestors who deemed certains foods safe or unsafe to eat based on their color. 

  • High-margin items: Aside from highlighting these within the golden triangle, consider choosing fonts and colors that will attract the customer’s eye. 

  • Photos: When it comes to selecting food photos for your menu, follow these two rules religiously: less is more and quality over quantity.  

  • Menu modifiers: Without venturing into too much choice territory, consider the power of suggestion when it comes to including a couple of menu modifiers directly on your menu. 

  • Cross-selling: Whether it be as classy as a wine or beer pairing suggestion under each high-margin item, or as simple as pairing soups and salads under the same header, cross-selling is real. 

  • Accessibility: Have fun with your design, but make sure it remains readable and uncluttered. Bright fonts on a bright background, or item descriptions being too small to read will have the same overwhelming effect as an overabundance of options. 

  • Platform: As you plan out your restaurant menu design, consider how it would work across your restaurant’s digital platforms as well. If it isn’t likely to translate, you’ll want to include a line item in your budget for digital menu design as well. 

 

For a more in-depth dive into each of these ingredients, check out:
 9 RESTAURANT MENU DESIGN TIPS THAT WILL HELP YOU BOOST PROFIT

 

 

51 Examples of Restaurant Menu Design Done Right

We’ve put together a list of 51 menu card examples to serve as a bit of restaurant menu design inspiration, including what exactly is so good about each one.

 

By the time you reach the end, you should be fully equipped to design a menu that elevates your brand, increases your profits, and ties into your brand identity in a way that stands out and gives your customers something to talk about around the water cooler – or wherever it is people talk these days. 

 


1. Quo Vadis - London, UK

 

Quo Vadis

 

 

The individual square boxes on this menu allow for highlighting high margin items and make the choices easy to navigate. Simple yet effective.

 

 


2. Michi Ramen - Austin, Texas

 


Michi Ramen

 

 

Simple illustrations on this menu make the dishes pop off the page. 

 

 

 

3 TIPS FOR CREATING AN AWESOME ONLINE MENU

 


3. Kittyhawk Cocktail Bar - Sydney, Australia 

 

Under Consideration – Kittyhawk Cocktail Bar. Designed by Gemma Warriner.

 

Concept-based menu design can help bring your backstory to life for customers. 

 

 

 

4. The Sinclair - Cambridge, Massachusetts

 

Under Consideration – Sinclair. Designed by Oat Creative.

 

Sometimes it’s all about being clean, elegant, and easy to navigate.

 

 

 

5. The Dead Rabbit - New York City, New York

 

Static 1 Square Space

 

 

This one gets people talking. The cocktail menu reads like a graphic novel and tells the story behind each drink item listed. 

 

 


6. Smoke & Duck Sauce - Atlanta, Georgia

 

Vigor Branding

 

 

You know the types who fidget with their beer labels or tear up their coasters? They’ll love these menus designed to be folded up into little origami cranes. 

 

 


7. Eleven Madison Park - New York City, New York

 

Under Consideration – Eleven Madison Park. Designed by Juliette Cezzar.

 

 

Here we’ve got minimal design, placed in a grid. When it comes to less is more, this menu design takes the cake. 

 

 

 

8. The Fat Cow Japanese Steakhouse - Singapore 

 

BPANDO – Designed by Foreign Policy

 

 

This menu was printed using wooden blocks made to resemble the branding of cows, which speaks to the restaurant’s Japanese style of “Wabi Sabi” beef. 

 

 


9. 13 Wives Cocktail Bar - Singapore 

 

Under Consideration – 13 Wives. Designed by Foreign Policy.

 

 

This cocktail menu is meant to feel like you’re reading the cocktail mixer’s personal little black book of ideas. 

 

 

 

10. Arthur’s Nosh Bar - Montreal, Canada

 

Arthurs MTL

 

 

This menu is simple, fits on one page, and uses an easy to read, black on white typeface.

 

 


11. Smith - Toronto, Canada

 

Fab AwardsDesigned by Tracy Ma.

 
 

Made to look like a newspaper, this menu offers simple text and black and white images of the seasonally-changing food items on offer.

 

 


12. Zapiain - Astigarraga, Spain

 

Grabo Laser

 

 

When your focus is on wine, your taco list can be short and to the point. This menu, designed by Grabo Laser, was etched into a wood block which can easily be left on tables. 

 

 


13. Ninebark - Napa Valley, California

 

Avroko

 

 

Fresh herbs are Ninebark's thing, so they decided to feature them front and center on their menus. 

 

 


14. Toko - Dubai, UAE

 

Behance – Toko Downtown Dubai. Designed by Brighthead Studio.

 

 

With all the minimalism and black and white type in the world these days, it’s refreshing that this Dubai-based Japanese restaurant went colorful with their unique marbled menu design.

 

 


15. Cafe Vera - Zaragoza, Spain 

 

Under Consideration – Vera. Designed by El Calotipo.

 

 

The tactile feeling of holding this solid wood plank menu in your hands immediately elevates the quality of the restaurant in your mind.

 

 

 

16. Cellarmaker Brewing Co. - San Francisco, California 

 

Pinterest. Designed by Gamut.

 

 

Not only is this vintage cellar inspired menu beautiful to look at, it serves as a bit of a bingo game for beer tastings. 

 

 

 


17. Hula de Hawaii - Monterrey, Mexico 

 

Under Consideration – Hula de Hawaii. Designed by Parametro Studio.

 

 

When your menu is inspired by all things Hawaii, it makes sense to design it with that in mind. There may even be some strategic color theory work happening behind the scenes.

 

 

 

 

5 Online Tools for DIY Restaurant Menu Design 

If paying a professional to redesign your menu isn’t in your budget at the moment, there are a number of online services you can turn to for easy-to-customize restaurant menu design templates. 

  • Canva: Let Canva do the heavy design lifting. All you have to do is drag and drop your logo and menu items into their well-designed templates. 

  • Adobe Spark: Unlike many other Adobe products, you don’t need any design or programming skills to use Spark and build a beautiful menu in line with your brand identity. 

  • iMenu Pro: This program has only one focus and it’s menus, so the tools and graphics included are designed with restaurateurs in mind.

  • Poster My Wall: Hundreds of templates, free downloads, and no design skills required!   

  • Flipsnack: This one is a little different because it focuses on digital menu design. If you’re looking to pretty-up your online menu, this tool is great! 

 

 

 

18. Chick-a-Biddy, Atlanta, Georgia

 

Under Consideration – Chick-A-BiddyDesigned by Tad Carpenter.

 

 

Yellow is the happiest color. No really. It’s been shown to trigger the release of serotonin in our brains, which in turn stimulates our appetites.

 

 


19. Fieldwork Brewing - Berkeley, California (multiple locations)

 

Under Consideration – Fieldwork Brewing Co. Designed by Gamut.

 

 

This craft brewery got a little crafty with their two-ring rolodex-style menu, which allows them to add and remove items as their taps change and rotate.

 

 


20. Nudo - Spokane, Washington 

 

Nudo RamenDesigned by Jesse Scheller.

 

 

Make your pop art really pop by contrasting it against neat and tidy columns. 

 

 

 

21. Admiral Maltings - Alameda, California

 

Gamut – Admiral Maltings

 

 

This California brewery’s menu doubles as a chart that lists the flavour profiles and ingredients of their beers. 

 

 


22. One Night Only - Singapore

 

BehanceDesigned by Foreign Policy

 

 

Themed around the idea of ephemera and the transient nature of old Americana road trips, this restaurant designed their menu to fit their vibe.

 

 

 

23. Fade Street Gastro Bar - Dublin, Ireland

 

Steve Simpson

 

 

Keeping the actual menu clean and simple is good for your bottom line. But that doesn’t mean you can’t have some fun and get a little loud with your cover design.

 

 


24. Mr. Brown - Barcelona, Spain

 

Jerome & Zimmerman

 

 

This restaurant menu was designed to be part of the decor when it's not in use. 

 

 

 

25. The Clifford Pier - Singapore 

 

Under Consideration  – Clifford PierDesigned by Foreign Policy

 

 

The designers behind this menu know the value of a strong first impression. 

 

 

 

26. La Banane - Toronto, Canada

 

La Banane 

 

 

This single page, black and white design is so classy it hurts. 

 

 


27. Parson’s Chicken & Fish - Chicago, Illinois

 

Thrillist

 

 

Has all that red and yellow made you hungry for some fried chicken yet?  

 

 


28. Biderman’s Deli - Austin, Texas

 

Biderman's Deli

 

 

This deli serves up breakfast staples, so they’ve kept their menu as simple and straightforward as the contents. 

 

 


29. La Cubana - Toronto, Canada

 

La Cubana

 

 

Limited choices, simple design, doubles as a placemat. This Toronto-based, Cuban-inspired joint is covering all their menu design bases.

 

 


30. Kuro Sushi - Poznań, Poland

 

Under Consideration – KuroDesigned by Artentiko.

 

 

These menus come rolled just like your maki! 

 

 

 

31. Black Bean Deli - Orlando, Florida

 

Black Bean Deli

 

 

 This Orlando-based Cuban joint keeps it easy to read on their behind-the-counter menu board. 

 

 


32. Bar Raval - Toronto, Canada

 

Taylor Fladgate Wordpress

 

 

This Spanish tapas joint is known for its extensive wine list, so they’ve designed a menu that highlights this focus.

 

 


33. The Golden Girl Rum Club - Springfield, Missouri 
 

Under Consideration – The Golden Girl Rum ClubDesigned by Frank Norton.

 

 

This menu is as fun and quirky as the cocktails within it, with individual illustrations for each of The Golden Girl’s signature cocktails. 

 

 

 

34. Hiding in Plain Sight - Amsterdam, Netherlands

 

Under Consideration – Hiding in Plain SightDesigned by Moulsari Jain.

 

 

When stashed on a bookshelf, this menu really lives up to the restaurant’s name. 

 

 

 

35. The Noble Experiment - San Diego, California

 

Under Consideration – Noble ExperimentDesigned by Dane Danner.

 

 

When it comes to noble experiments, these San Diegans got it right with a gold embossed textured menu.

 

 

 

36. Hero - Paris, France

 

Under Consideration – HeroDesigned by Safari Sundays and No Vacancy 

 

 

Clean and clear design allows this restaurant to get away with a more complicated layout.

 

 

 

37. Evo Vegetarian - Portland, Maine

 

Under Consideration – EvoDesigned by Might & Main.

 

 

Clean, clear, and classic.

 

 

 

38. So9 - Melbourne, Australia 

 

Under Consideration – So9Designed by BrandWorks.

 

 

By breaking items down into different categories, you have the opportunity to suggest pairings with items in different boxes, which will boost your sales.

 

 

 

39. MataMata - Paris, France 

 

Under Consideration – MataMataDesigned by Content Design Lab.

 

 

This grid makes the golden triangle easy to execute. 

 

 

 

40. Gaslamp Social Provisions - Spokane, Washington

 

Under Consideration –Gaslamp Social ProvisionsDesigned by Jesse Scheller.

 

 

Simple illustrations that fit your restaurant’s theme can go a long way toward tying your brand identity together. 

 

 

 

41. Alamo - Zaragoza,  Spain 

 

Under Consideration – Alamo. Designed by Noem9 Studio.

 

 

Make like a tree and leave a lasting impression on your guests with menus printed directly onto a slice of a tree trunk.

 

 

 

42. Catch and Release - L.A., California

 

Under Consideration – Catch and ReleaseDesigned by Farm Design.

 

 

The Catch and Release menu highlights their specialty, with a fish index card to help guide customers.

 

 

 

43. Clerigo Tapas Bar - Porto, Portugal 

 


Under Consideration – ClerigosDesigned by White Studio.

 

 

The golden triangle is being used to perfection here.

 

 

 

44. Savio Volpe - Vancouver, Canada

 


Under Construction – Savio VolpeDesigned by Glasfurd & Walker.

 

 

Some menus tell a story. This one illustrates the adventures of a clever fox, the namesake of the restaurant.

 

 

 

45. El Vez Burrito - New York City, New York

 

Under Consideration – El Vez Burrito Bar.Designed by Roberto DeVicq.

 

 

Burritos are fun and so are these menus. 

 

 

 

46. Flamingo - Hegyeshalom, Hungary 

 

Under Consideration – FlamingoDesigned by Akos Sarkadi-Toth.

 

 

For menus that change regularly, include a permanent piece like this wood board with binder clips, and print off new menus when needed. 

 

 

 

47. Real Sports Bar - Toronto, Canada

 

Under Consideration – Real Sports Bar and GrillDesigned by Jar Head Designs.

 

 

At first glance, it may seem like there are too many choices on this menu, but the strategically placed categories and carefully selected fonts and bolding make it easy to navigate and pleasing to the eye. 

 

 

 

48. Coldwater Creek - Wollongong, Australia 

 

Under Consideration – Coldwater CreekDesigned by The National Grid.

 

 

This menu design ticks off a lot of boxes: color theory, strategic categories, limited choices, and eye-popping design.

 

 

 

49. La Principal - Bogota, Colombia

 

Under Consideration – La PrincipalDesigned by Arutza Rico Onzaga.

 

 

Food photography done right. 

 

 

 

50. C. Senor - Dallas, Texas

 

Under Construction – C. Senor. Designed by Hungry Studio.

 

 

This list wouldn’t be complete without at least one example of a food truck menu. The simple design of this menu board uses the right mix of colour and eye-catching fonts.

 

 

 

51. Batinse - Quebec City, Canada

 

Under Consideration – BatinseDesigned by Deux et Quatre.

 


Another example of golden triangle perfection.

 

 

Whether you’re just starting out or considering a rebrand, a well-thought-out restaurant menu design can go a long way to improving your bottom line. Working within the parameters listed at the top of this page will ensure your success – whether you’re jumping on a new design trend, or sticking with a tried and true classic look. 

 

 

For more tips and tricks to achieving the ultimate restaurant menu design, check out:

THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO MENU DESIGN 

 

 

 

About the Author

Dana Krook

Dana is a Content Marketing Specialist at TouchBistro, sharing tips for and stories of restaurateurs turning their passion into success. She loves homemade hot sauce, deep fried pickles and finding excuses to consume real maple syrup.

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