Best way to create multiple versions of a restaurant menu

Community Beginner ,
May 10, 2020 May 10, 2020

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I'm trying to automate creating a menu for a chain of restauarnts, roughly 180 different versions. Each version has the same menu items with different pricing. The information will be coming in via JotForm or Excel, haven't decided which is a better option. I'm leaning towards data merge, but am wondering if there is a better/more efficient way to do this. Does anyone have experience with something like this? I would love suggestions, as I can't seem to figure out how to get started. I currently have a template set up with a placeholder menu in a table format. Since the information will be streaming in over time, versus having everything at once, that seems to complicate the process, especially with a data merge...

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How to , Import and export , Print , Scripting

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Community Beginner , May 18, 2020 May 18, 2020
This is perfect, thank you!

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 11, 2020 May 11, 2020

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You're need something like this - https://www.65bit.com/software/easycatalog/

 

Remember, never say you can't do something in InDesign, it's always just a question of finding the right workaround to get the job done. © David Blatner

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Contributor ,
May 14, 2020 May 14, 2020

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Is the menu itself all the same except the prices? So you basically can prepare the whole menu and just have the prices to be replaced for 180 records? Then this is an easy task.

If you have to generate the menu items depending on your data source dynamically then were talking about something more complicated.

 

Could you clarify?

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Community Beginner ,
May 18, 2020 May 18, 2020

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The menu itself has required items and optional items. The description of the items does not change from location to location, only the pricing. So yes, the pricing will need to be replaced for 180 different files and each location will need to indicate if they have the optional items and then provide pricing. Thank you for your inout, I hope this clarifies the scope of the project a bit.

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Contributor ,
May 18, 2020 May 18, 2020

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How do you know if an optional item is not needed? Missing price in data source?

So do you expect an optional item to be deleted if price is empty for a specific location?

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Community Beginner ,
May 18, 2020 May 18, 2020

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Yes, missing item in data source will indicate that an optional item needs to be deleted. We expect to manually delete unused optional items and adjust the layout as needed. 

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Contributor ,
May 18, 2020 May 18, 2020

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If you need/want to manually adjust 180 files thats an easy task that can be done with indesigns data merge out of the box.

You need additional scripts to get single indesign files though.

 

Alternatively you can try MyDataMerge if you're on macOS. Thats what we use. It can do all at once including deleting unused stuff. And the support is very helpful in setting up projects. 

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Community Beginner ,
May 18, 2020 May 18, 2020

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This is perfect, thank you!

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 18, 2020 May 18, 2020

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You could link Excel data as tables in the InDesign documents. When the Excel data is updated, you can update the link information. 

https://redokun.com/blog/link-indesign-tables-to-excel-spreadsheets

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Contributor ,
May 18, 2020 May 18, 2020

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This way he won't get optional items deleted.

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Community Beginner ,
May 18, 2020 May 18, 2020

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I thought about this, as I love that feature, and I've been thinking through that process. The one concern would be every InD document updating the linked Excel file each time the Excel file is updated. I'm thinking the best way to prevent that is to unlink the table once the edits have been made? Or rename each Excel file to match individual InD documents? So each InD file would have a matching Excel file packaged with it? Is that how you would do it?

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New Here ,
Jul 23, 2022 Jul 23, 2022

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I'm doing marketing of my client restaurant princess market. What  is the benefir of creating multiple version of restaurant menu?

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