After a bunch of false starts and scheduling issues, I finally had my photo shoot at a local restaurant to shoot the new chefs menu items. First tip, get the client to choose a time that works for them and stick to it. The rescheduling has taken weeks and numerous trips up there for the shoot to be completed.
Tip number two... if you are shooting a place of business, if at all possible do it before or after business hours. The hassle of getting there early or working later are more than made up for by not having their customers offering their sage advice or asking questions. I ended up having the session while their dinner service was going on. One I felt like a schmuck for being in the way of folks trying to enjoy their meal, and two, the people eating just couldn't get it through their head that I really didn't want them in the photos. I had models there already. Probably a good third of the time was spent answering questions about why I was not using Sony, or why I used digital and film or why I used studio lights, etc.
I had models there for shots of people eating. Even though they were provided by the restaurant, I had them sign model releases. I probably didn't have to, but you never know if they will get fired next week or quit, and I didn't want to take the chance that that may jam up using the images for ads and such. In regards to models, practice with someone that will be a guinea pig for you, in telling models what to do and how you want them posed. It sounds lame, but if you practice before hand you will have an idea of the poses you will want for the shot, and you instructions to them will be more precise. I lucked out with the models and they were great, very natural looking.
All in all it was a really good first experience. The restaurant is pleased. They bought some images outright and others they will use as they need them. So I got paid for the time it took for me to go up there, for the photos they bought outright, and will be paid each time they use the other images, depending on what they use them for. The plan is to rotate through the other images for each ad depending on ad size, which menu they are promoting, special events, etc.