If you hover your mouse over a drink or dish it will show you how much you should earn. Same as when adding an ingredient to a drink or dish. The rarer fruits seem to push the drink values higher, maybe make it a point to check the wild fruit trees to harvest them when they are ready and buy whatever fruits you can afford from the mailbox.
You should always try and age your drinks to max level when possible. Sometimes you cant because you have to have stuff to sell, but do it when you can.
I’ve got a chest in the cellar for unaged drinks and a chest in the bar for aged drinks. Expanding the cellar and filling it with barrels was one of my initial focuses. I now try and keep a nearly full chest of fully aged drinks ready to go, as well as 30-40 barrels full of drinks aging.
Foods, I don’t really worry about too much, just make a bunch of stuff to fill the box so you have stuff to sell, variety is nice but if you are open all day you need stuff in quantity. And really that goes for drinks as well, I just make sure I’m making stuff to have to sell. I’ve really mostly shifted to making what I can make in stacks, as you can put a 30 stack in a barrel, so making 3 different drinks that stack to 12, therefore needing 3 barrels to age feels inefficient.
The game seems to snowball at some point. Once you can seat 20 or so people (I’m really guessing at that number, it could be a bit higher or lower, play with it) and you can bring on a waiter, bartender and bouncer you can really just open as soon as you wake up and let the bar handle itself all day. Of course youll need to refill the taps and keep foods cooking and so on, but you can easily top things off and then go down to the farm shop and gather the forage and minerals, stop back and top off, then head north and do that loop.
There’s almost certainly a breakpoint where you can make and sell only the highest priced stuff, it really doesnt seem necessary. Initially gold is a problem, but at some point you are able to just print money on demand, and everything else becomes a bottleneck.