Thur update: Restaurants I never mention, how I monetize my blog

Met a couple of regular blog readers at the Saucer last night, and had a great conversation with them.  One of the questions they asked was, “There are certain restaurants and bars Downtown you never mention.  Does that mean you don’t like them, or don’t recommend them, or have had bad experiences there?”

Maybe, maybe not.

There are some places that just aren’t on my radar.  I don’t have anything against them, I just never think to walk in.  As a matter of fact, most of what I’ve heard about these restaurants has been positive, I just mentally pass them by for some reason.  Three on this list would be Felicia Suzanne’s, Encore, and Automatic Slim’s.  I’ve been to Slim’s before, but not in a few years.  I’ve never been to the other two.  When Felicia’s first opened, I was a little put off by the “jackets preferred for gentlemen in the dining room” blurb in their initial ads, and didn’t go… but since then, almost all of what I’ve been told about the place has been positive.  Never heard a bad word about Encore.  So, I’m turning to my readers for recommendations… what would you recommend I try on my first visit to Encore and Felicia’s, and my first visit in a long time to Slim’s?

I was also asked why I never mention $2.50 Tuesday Pint Nite at the Tap Room.  I never mention it because I’m always at the Saucer playing trivia that night, so it’s off my radar.  Great deal though.  More than 10 beers on tap, including some like Stella that the Saucer doesn’t run on its Pint Nite.  If you have a Tap Room mug, you get Pint Nite in your mug and get an extra 6 ounces for the same price.

Then there are a few places I don’t mention because more than 50% of what I hear about them has been extremely negative… after careful consideration, I just deleted two paragraphs I typed about one of them as a favor to a friend who is trying to help the owner turn the place around.  Let’s just say there’s a lot of work that remains to be done, from what I’ve been told over the past month by blog readers who have been there.

The couple also asked, “Do some of these places pay you to mention them?”  The answer for that is absolutely NO.  If I mention a bar, restaurant, or club Downtown, it’s because I want to.  Even the new “what’s the fire sale?” feature is not being funded by the Saucer in any way.  It’s something my friends and I have been doing for a while anyway… first one to walk by the Saucer and see the Fire Sale texts it to everyone else.  I figured, I may as well use Twitter to take it to the next level.  It worked too… the couple was there last night because I listed Flying Dog Old Scratch as the Fire Sale, and the guy is a fan of that beer.

That said, I’ll admit there are some places that let me in without cover or occasionally send a free beer my way because of the blog.  I don’t turn those down when that happens, but on the other hand I don’t go around expecting freebies.  I will admit that a beer distributor whose beers will be carried at the Saucer starting August 1 stuck $10 in my account this morning so I could try their products.  No problem with that.

The way I monetize my blog is mainly through my online stores… Tube Top Boutique, Mid-South Alcoholic Supply and the others (and a new one which will be launched tomorrow).  It’s not so much that my readers buy from them (although they sometimes do), it’s that by linking to them, Google sees links coming to those stores from a blog with a PageRank of 5, which bumps the stores in search engine results.  Also, if I mention a book I read recently, I figure the link to the book may as well be an Amazon affiliate link, so I make a little commission if anyone buys it.

So there you have it… financial disclosure of sorts.  I’ll be back later today with my “it’s Thursday, what’s going on” post.