Restaurant Unstoppable with Eric Cacciatore

After graduating with a degree in philosophy and a successful 10-year stint as an independent derivatives trader, Nick Kokonas partnered with Chef Grant Achatz to open Alinea Restaurant in 2005. In the years to follow, Nick would go on to co-find Next, The Aviary, and Roisters. In addition, Kokonas is the Founder and CEO of Tock, a cloud-based comprehensive booking system for restaurants, events, and pop-ups around the world.

Check out the first time Nick Kokonas joined RU on episode 333.

Show notes…

Calls to ACTION!!!

Favorite success quote or mantra:

  • "Just show up!"

In today's episode with Nick Kokonas we will discuss:

  • You should know your customer
  • Deciding when to scale
  • Writing a cocktail book
  • Connecting with your guest digitally before they arrive
  • Letting you team weigh in on creative decisions/branding/marketing
  • Collecting emails
  • Are regulars your most valuable customers? What do the numbers say?
  • Partnering with a hotel
  • Opening and closing a restaurant in 3 years
  • Enforcing culture; is it possible?
  • The intricacies of Tock and Tock To Go
  • Contactless payment /paying with your phone

Today's sponsor:

Podium- Only half of the businesses in America are text capable. Setting up a business texting line immediately gives you a competitive advantage. Texting gives you ultimate flexibility rather than being tethered to a phone. Need more reasons? On top of Podium’s texting platform, you’ll be able to send review invites, request remote payments, and power curbside pickup; all through text.

Toast - A POS built for restaurants by restaurant people Adapt fast with Toast's cloud-based restaurant POS system that updates to evolve your POS along with changing industry trends and guest expectations. Toast is built exclusively for restaurants of all shapes and sizes, with over 2/3 of our employees having restaurant experience to serve you better. Online Ordering - Let guests easily order directly from your restaurant for pickup or contactless delivery to keep revenue flowing during these uncertain times. Toast Delivery Services Dispatch local drivers through an on-demand network to keep your community fed and revenue coming in.


Contact info:


Instagram: @tockhq

Twitter: @tock

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 Nick Kokonas for joining me for another awesome episode. Until next time!


Restaurant Unstoppable is a free podcast. One of the ways I'm able to make it free is by earning a commission when sharing certain products with you. I've made it a core value to only share tools, resources, and services my guest mentors have recommend, first. If you're finding value in my podcast, please use my links!
Direct download: 750_nick_kokonas__mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT