Like Martha Stewart, Wolfgang Puck is a conglomerate. He’s an award-winning chef, but also a restaurateur, cookbook author, newspaper columnist, TV personality, and purveyor of a line of branded consumer products and housewares. According to his website, “Central to all of Wolfgang Puck’s endeavors is his Wolfgang’s Eat, Love, Live ™ (WELL) philosophy. This stands for culinary passion for eating and dining WELL, which means a commitment to provide food made with only the freshest and most natural and organic ingredients available, to celebrate local farmers and seasonal ingredients, and to use only humanely raised animal products.”
That’s what Wolfgang wants to be known for—so is he?
“Good food” is the largest positive theme—consumers clearly feel he’s delivering on the part of his philosophy related to “eating and dining well.”
Wolfgang may not think of coffee as the pinnacle of culinary achievement, but his coffee was frequently mentioned as being really good.
People love his products, the second biggest positive theme.
Finally, there’s his undeniable sex appeal.
The two biggest negative themes are “lousy food” and “lousy product”—a mirror image of the two biggest positive themes—“good food” and “great product.” Here are a couple of the naysayers.
Even his coffee, singled out by many posters as great, doesn’t please everybody.
Many consumers also find his restaurants pricey.
And some negatives about his products.
At least no one contradicts the “adorable” comments ;-)
The people who like Wolfgang’s food really like it, and that’s no small achievement, but a key part of his philosophy is using natural, organic, local ingredients. He may well be doing that, but posters don’t mention it. So either he’s not communicating that message effectively, or it’s not something that’s apparent to people when they’re dining at one of his restaurants. Or, if they are aware of it, they still don’t think it’s worth mentioning.
He also wants to be known for “the best in restaurant hospitality,” and many diners have pleasant experiences at his restaurants. But there are also many sound bites relating to bad service, and a few complaints from diners who were turned away because they didn’t meet the dress code at one of his more-upscale restaurants.
He wants his Wolfgang Puck Express restaurants to be seen as affordable, but that’s always going to be a relative term. These restaurants “emphasize freshness and quality, preparing food fresh-to-order at affordable prices.” (source) Because he does that, he’s not able to compete on price with fast-food restaurants and sandwich shops, so positioning is key for him here to ensure consumers understand that these Express restaurants are going to be more expensive than those perceived competitors, but are also going to serve better food.