Restaurant Unstoppable with Eric Cacciatore

Hailing from Buffalo, NY, Travis came to Austin, TX by way of West Palm Beach, FL and Los Vegas, NV. It was in West Palm Beach where he truly become a professional while working at TGI Fridays. Tober Settled in Austin for good in 2011, where he continued to refine his skill and build his resume at The Four Seasons. In addition, Tober has consulted on beverage programs at Ruth's Chris Steak House, Landry's, Hard Rock Cafe and TGI Fridays. After having helped open Vox Table, Tober left to join forces with other Austin restaurant leaders to open Nickel City in 2017. Nickle City has quickly risen to be one of the most respected bar programs in the nation.

Show notes…

Favorite success quote or mantra:

"High fives and handshakes.".

In this episode with Travis Tober, we discuss:

  • How to go from not having a shift available to having any shift you want.
  • Going above and beyond what is expected from you to create opportunity. Just out hustle everyone else.
  • When going out to eat, keep a mental catalog of what restaurants and bars are doing to drive traffic through their doors. Over time you'll develop your own playbook.
  • Letting your team members get creative and contribute beyond just doing their job.
  • Never sacrificing quality.
  • Before you go asking for money, take a few years to build your network and your resume.
  • When you're new to a city, research who is the best at what you want to do and become friends with them.
  • Keep the restaurant people in the restaurant and keep the money out of operations.
  • Why it is so important to develop your own personal brand. Also, we discuss how branding is more than a logo; its your story and an extension of who you are.
  • "Hype" your social media presence.
  • Partnering with people who make you better and who are strong where you are weak. Collectively you need to be the complete package. However, even though you're different you need to same vision.
  • Creating perceived value.
  • Being the Disney World of dive bars; focusing on detail and service.

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Knowledge bombs

  1. Which "it factor" habit, trait, or characteristic you believe most contributes to your success?
    • Don't be a dick.
  2. What is your biggest weakness?
    • Clutter.
  3. What's one question you ask or thing you look for during an interview?
    • Hire humans.
  4. What's a current challenge? How are you dealing with it?
    • Staying relevant. They're combating this by just having fun.
  5. Share one code of conduct or behavior you teach your team.
    • High fives and handshakes.
  6. What is one uncommon standard of service you teach your staff?
  7. What's one book we must read to become a better person or restaurant owner?
    1. Brandwashed: Tricks Companies Use to manipulate Our Minds and Persuade Us to Buy
    2. Buyology: Truth and Lies About Why We Buy
  8. What's the one thing you feel restaurateurs don't know well enough or do often enough?
    • Be present.
    • Play the long game.
  9. What's one piece of technology you've adopted within your four walls restaurant and how has it influence operations?
  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?
    1. Have great time.
    2. Entertainment and value rule.

Contact info:



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 TRAVIS TOBER for joining me for another awesome episode. Until next time!


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Direct download: 562_Travis_Tober_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT