Restaurant Unstoppable with Eric Cacciatore

Steve Difillippo started his restaurant career at a young age and would go on to attend Boston University and Cambridge School of Culinary Arts. In 1985, He took over Davio's of Boston at the young age of 24. 33 years later he has grown the Davio's brand to 10 separate locations which include 5 locations in MA, 2 Locations in PA, one location in Manhattan, Atlanta, and Irvine, CA.

The Davio's brand also has a food company, which spun off the concept of their Philly Cheese Steak Spring Rolls.

Lastly, Mr. DiFillippo is the author of the restaurant business book It's All About The Guest: Exceeding Expectations in Business and in Life, The Davio's Way

Catch Steve DeFillippo's first appearance in Episode 003 of Restaurant Unstoppable.

Show notes…

Favorite success quote or mantra:

“Follow your passion. Figure out what you want to do in life and do it.”

In this episode with Steve DeFillippo we discuss:

  • Julia Child
  • Learning to cook as a child
  • The love of serving people and cooking
  • Passion for people
  • If you’re not a people person, don’t get into the restaurant industry
  • Food is important but hospitality matter more
  • Mentors
  • Learning how to deal with people
  • Pay attention (situational awareness)
  • Learn more from people in other environments
  • Mindfulness
  • Never quitting
  • Do your best, but don’t worry about winning
  • It’s not about money, its about knowledge
  • Loving what you do
  • The history of Davio’s prior to Steve’s acquisition
  • The importance of culture
  • The importance of adhering to your own standards
  • The importance of a to-do list
  • Knowing when to grow
  • Can’t have your head in the sand
  • Self-awareness
  • Accountability

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Knowledge bombs:

  1. Which "it factor" habit, trait, or characteristic you believe most contributes to your success?
    • Run every morning
  2. What is your biggest weakness?
    • Eat too much
  3. What's one question you ask or thing you look for during an interview?
    • "What do you do to be philanthropic?"
  4. What's a current challenge? How are you dealing with it?
    • Finding the right people
  5. Share one code of conduct or behavior you teach your team.
    • Be yourself
  6. What is one uncommon standard of service you teach your staff?
    • do whatever it takes. Eye contact. Never say no.
  7. What's one book we must read to become a better person or restaurant owner?
  8. What's the one thing you feel restaurateurs don't know well enough or do often enough?
    • They don't take care of their people as much as they should.
  9. What's one piece of technology you've adopted within your four walls restaurant and how has it influence operations?
    • Cameras
  10. If you got the news that you'd be leaving this world tomorrow and all memories of you, your work, and your restaurants would be lost with your departure with the exception of 3 pieces of wisdom you could leave behind for the good of humanity, what would they be?
    • Love what you do.
    • Show up every day, give it your all, don't coast
    • Never forget where you came from, stay humble

Contact info:


Davio's website

Twitter: @stevedefillippo

Instagram: @daviosrestaurant

Thanks for listening!

Thanks so much for joining today! Have some feedback you’d like to share? Leave a note in the comment section below!

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Huge thanks to Steve DeFillippo for joining me for another awesome episode. Until next time!


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Direct download: 620_Steve_Defillippo_mixdown_complete_1.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT