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The Top Restaurateurs Podcast

The Top Restaurateurs Podcast

By Scott Reyes
On The Top Restaurateurs Podcast, we interview leading restauranteurs to unpack how they approach the business side of running restaurants. Each episode gets right to the point with real, actionable advice and information you can use to grow as a restauranteur.
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Turning Grandma's cocktail recipe into a beverage brand with Ikeda Feingold, Founder - The 1970
Ikeda Feingold decided there was an opportunity to bottle up the mixed drink her grandmother used to make and sell it. That’s how she started 1970. She’s very much still in start up stage, and she shares what she is doing to grow her brand. Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Sponsor: Linecaster.co
44:53
March 11, 2020
How to launch a food product with Steve Gelerman, CEO - Banana Wave
Steve Gelerman is a food industry veteran. He’s launched and sold a food manufacturing company and several food product brands. Now he’s focused on Banana Wave. He joined the show to talk about his company, his rules for evaluating products, push vs pull brands, and what investors look at when growing a company. Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
01:04:47
March 4, 2020
Paying living wages and ampersand tattoos with Andy Hooper, President & COO of &Pizza
In this episode, Andy Hooper breaks down how &Pizza is tackling  delivery marketplaces and how the company has built a culture so strong their employees get ampersand tattoos.  Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
51:48
February 25, 2020
Creating fair business environments for restaurants with Andrew Rigie, Executive Director - New York City Hospitality Alliance
Andrew Rigie is the Executive Director of the New York City Hospitality Alliance where he works with NYC restaurant owners to create favorable conditions for restaurants to thrive in the five boroughs. We spoke about delivery services, ghost kitchens, and other challenges on which the restaurant industry is working. Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
50:34
February 19, 2020
Building a beverage brand with Fariq Merchant, CEO - Eliya
Fariq Merchant tasted King Coconut water while attending a wedding in Sri Lanka. He immediately knew he needed to leave his Wall Street job and start a beverage business selling the stuff. Listen to us chat about how he helped create a supply chain to support his new company and how he is building world-wide distribution with a small team. Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
56:01
February 19, 2020
Pioneering the self-serve tap room market with Nate Tomforde, Founder & CEO - Pour Taproom
Nate Tomforde set out to create a beer festival environment without the beer festival. That's when he came up with Pour Taproom, the first 100% self-serve beer and wine taproom. We talk about what it's like creating a new business on top of a new concept and why he is not franchising. Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
43:42
February 4, 2020
Running a family restaurant business with Burney Jennings, CEO - Biscuitville
On this episode, we talk to Burney Jennings, CEO of Biscuitville, about taking over the family business, running a breakfast only restaurant, and emotional intelligence. Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
30:51
January 28, 2020
Overseeing an iconic food brand with James Walker, Senior Vice President of Restaurants - Nathan's Famous
On this episode, James Walker talks about what it’s like taking on the role of leading the restaurant division of one of America’s oldest and most iconic food brands, and how he approached his first year on the job. Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
36:52
January 21, 2020
Changing consumer behavior with Jeff Fenster, CEO - Everbowl
On this episode, Jeff Fenster shares his thoughts on health food in the restaurant space, his brand pillars and changing consumer behavior. Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
48:26
January 14, 2020
Persevering through adversity and prioritizing people with Todd Hogan, Owner-Operator - Branchwater (and more)
On this episode we have Todd Hogan. He's spent a lifetime in the restaurant industry opening locations, experiencing loss, regrouping, and now thriving. He talks about what he chose to focus on and how key relationships helped him along the way. Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
43:13
January 7, 2020
Evoking nostalgia and value to form a line out the door with Patrick Terry, Founder - P. Terry's Burger Stand
On this episode we have Patrick Terry, marketer turned restaurateur. He leveraged his love for fast food and fond memories of the good-old-fashioned-hamburger to build a company that takes care of people, offers a great value, and has a line forming out of the door. Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
53:52
January 2, 2020
The Best of Season One
On this episode, we introduce the rest of the crew behind Top Restaurateurs, and break down our favorite moments from Season One. Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
01:05:58
November 6, 2019
Building a memorable brand with Ken and Don Sofer, Owners - Blockheads
On this episode we have brothers, Ken and Don Sofer. They were one of the first to open a California style burrito restaurant in Manhattan. 30 years later, they are still going strong. We talk about mistakes made, memorable branding, failed partnerships, and what it takes to keep employees for many years. Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
01:07:34
October 29, 2019
How to create great experiences for your restaurant guests and employees with Tim McLoone, Founder - McCloone's Restaurants
On this episode, Tim McLoone talks about starting his first restaurant, adding locations after 17 years, creating excellent guest experiences, leading people well, and shares an incredible story about how is first restaurant got off to a running start. Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
01:00:19
October 22, 2019
Use Instagram and pop-culture to grow your brand and your sales with Lindzi Shanks, Co-Founder - xomarshmallow
Today on the show, Lindzi Shanks talks about staying fresh and relevant and how to use Instagram to grow sales for XO Marshmallow, a fun, all marshmallow cafe with a strong fan-base. Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
39:55
October 15, 2019
Using a marketing first approach to grow a frozen yogurt chain with Solomon Choi, CEO - 16 Handles
Today on the show, Solomon Choi talks about how he used a marketing first approach to create New York City's first self-serve frozen yogurt chain, plus thoughts on food delivery apps, and how he chose the location of his first store. Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
54:20
October 8, 2019
Growing fifty percent in year 12 with Scott Dixon, Chef Owner - Scott's Downtown
Today on the show, we have Scott Dixon, the Chef Owner of Scott’s Downtown, a small town establishment serving up a casual fine dining experience. He’s been open for twelve years, survived a move, and has see fifty percent growth in his twelfth year of business. Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
47:23
October 1, 2019
Scaling a franchise business the second time through with Nick Voijnovic, CEO - Little Greek Fresh Grill
On this episode, Scott interviews Nick Vojnovic. He is the former president of Beef O'Brady's. Now he's applying what he's learned, running and growing Little Greek Fresh Grill. He partnered with the founder when they had 4 locations. Now they have 43. Check out the new Top Restaurateurs website, https://toprestaurateurs.com, and sign up for the show extras. You'll get access to extra content like transcripts of past episodes, audio that didn't make it into the show, and more. You can stay update to date with the show online on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
37:22
September 24, 2019
How to scale to 100 locations in 5 years with Landon Eckles, CEO - Clean Juice
Today on the show we have Landon Eckles. In 2014 he decided he was traveling too much, so he packed up his family and moved south to start CleanJuice with his wife. They have scaled the company to 80 locations and will be over 100 in Q1 2020.
37:02
September 17, 2019
How to go from delivery driver to CEO and help others do the same with Chuck Thorp - CEO, DoubleDaves Pizzaworks
Today's guess is Chuck Thorp. In 1988 he was a delivery driver for DoubleDaves. Now he owns the company and has 39 locations. We talk about helping employees find a path to ownership, investing in technology, and designing the right store format for the market.
37:08
September 10, 2019
How to grow from a food cart to a multi-state chain with Rob Giuliani - CEO, Playa Bowls
Today's guest is Rob Giuliani. He and his co-founder fell in love with acai bowls on a surfing trip and started selling them from a food cart on the Jersey Shore. Now they have 78 locations throughout the east coast. We chat about scaling a franchise business, building a brand, and keeping an open line of communication with your stores.
37:53
September 3, 2019
How to listen to the market and deliver with Jeff Schroeder - Owner, La Roccia Pizza
Today's guest is an owner at La Roccia Pizza in Chicago, a Lincoln Park joint taking on "big pizza." He's listening to feedback, navigating the delivery app marketplace. Jeff is betting business growth on leveraging established networks.
39:24
August 29, 2019
How to leverage community to grow a local restaurant with Koby Keller - Founder, Old Country Place
Today's guest is the founder and owner of Old Country Place, a home town barbecue joint with high quality, locally sourced ingredients. While they are a new restaurant, they are a community favorite. Koby is looking to grow his business through adding another location.
14:31
August 27, 2019
The number one thing that keeps restaurateurs from scaling with Ryan Gromfin - Owner, The Restaurant Boss and Bacon
Today's guest runs the website, therestaurantboss.com and the software clickbacon.com. He has been working in restaurants since before he could drive. Now he's the most followed restaurant coach online, helping restaurateurs scale and grow their businesses.
25:31
August 22, 2019
How to turn your side hustle into a coffee brand with Justin Carner - Founder, Velvet Robot Coffee
Today's guest is the founder of Velvet Robot Coffee. He started it as a side hustle, and now he is busy scaling the business at farmers markets and looking to open his first location.
29:22
August 22, 2019
How to be an early mover and stay ahead of restaurant trends with John Lettieri - Founder, Hero Certified Burgers
Today's guest has been starting businesses in the restaurant space since 1989. He's the founder of Hero Certified Burgers, and an innovator in the restaurant industry. His brand was one of the first to embrace the sustainability movement and is leading the charge in virtual kitchens.
36:40
August 22, 2019
The Top Restaurateurs Podcast Trailer
On The Top Restauranteurs Podcast, we interview leading restaurateurs and unpack how they approach the business side of running restaurants. Each episode gets right to the point with 20 to 30 minutes of real, actionable advice and information you can use to grow as a restauranteur. Subscribe at https://anchor.fm/toprestaurateurs.
01:35
August 5, 2019