Menyu app focuses on Mahoning Valley restaurants - News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Menyu app focuses on Mahoning Valley restaurants

WARREN, Ohio -

Two local guys are trying to change the way you find a place to eat out, creating an app called "Menyu" that features menus for just about every Valley restaurant.

When co-founders Kevin Sims and Adam VanBuskirk first went to Cockeye BBQ in Warren to pitch a new app, though, the owner looked at them a little cockeyed.

"My first thought was, who are these guys?" said Cockeye BBQ owner and pitmaster Erik Hoover.

They came up with the Menyu app. Two friends who wanted to find a way to make finding food a little easier in the Valley.

"Not having to have like ten different apps to do everything. You have your contact info, the restaurants in your area, the full menu," said Sims. "It's that convenience for the user."

Basically, if there's a restaurant open in the Valley it's either on there or will be soon. When you dive into the menus, users and restaurants can upload pictures for every item.

"We're not looking to allow user reviews and a lot of things that a lot of the other bigger apps use," said VanBuskirk. "But with us, we're really looking at the power of those images on the menu items we think can really help consumers try new dishes, see a lot of things, and the restaurants as well. They're making great product, great dishes. They work hard at it, let's put it in front of people."

So it's ever-evolving and free for both users and restaurants.

"Eventually, of course we'd like to make money, but Kevin and I chose to do this project because we really just, I love writing code, he likes the people and the sales side of it. We just wanted to build a good product," said VanBuskirk.

From a restaurant's perspective, it can be a win-win; a chance for a place like Cockeye BBQ here in Warren to add to its ever-growing fan base.

"As a restaurant owner, I think that I need to pay attention to anything that's out there that is mentioning my name," said Hoover. "Doesn't matter what it is, you better know about it."

As the app evolves, the plan is to give the restaurants themselves the option to go in and tweak their page.

"I'm a control freak," said Hoover. "I want to get on and make sure that our hours are correct, our directions are correct, our menu is close to being correct. I'm known for changing my menu all the time anyway, so good luck with that, guys. But, you know, I want to participate in that."

With this app he'll have his chance, along with hundreds of other restaurants in case you're hungry.

The Menyu app is available for free for iPhone users.

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