Restaurant Unstoppable with Eric Cacciatore

With Excitement allow me to introduce to you today's guest, the Founder of Big Grover Brewery, Matt Swift. Matt Swift grew up in the restaurant business. His mom, Faye Swift, opened Sluggers in Coralville, IA when Matt was just a young boy. Matt would go on to work in that restaurant learning about a hospitality first mentality and High standards before opening his first restaurant, Black Stone, in 2007. With numerous partners, Matt has since gone on to open Red's Ale House (2009) Big Grove Brewery Solon (2013), 30 Hop (2014), Pullmans bar (2015), Mosely's Barbecue and Provisions (2016), Big Grove, Iowa City (2017), Saint Burch Tavern (2018), Tribute (2020), and the Iowa Athletic Clun (2021).

Today’s feature affiliate: Bentobox. In need of a restaurant website? Click this link to find out why so many of my guests use Bentobox!

Show notes…

Calls to ACTION!!!

Favorite success quote or mantra:

  • "Not preparing is preparing to fail."

In this episode with Matthew Swift we will discuss:

  • Dealing with a massive floods that ruins your restaurant
  • Partnerships
  • Candor
  • Exiting partners
  • Scaling
  • Transitioning from restaurant to brewery
  • Community involvement

Today's sponsor:

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Knowledge bombs

  1. Which "it factor" habit, trait, or characteristic you believe most contributes to your success?
    • Good at saying yes and following through
  2. What is your biggest weakness?
    • Details
  3. What's one question you ask or thing you look for during an interview?
    • Energy
  4. What's a current challenge? How are you dealing with it?
    • Staffing
  5. Share one code of conduct or behavior you teach your team.
    • Practice candor 
  6. What is one uncommon standard of service you teach your staff?
    • Push atmosphere, respect the guest
  7. What's one book we must read to become a better person or restaurant owner?
  8. What's one piece of technology you've adopted within your restaurant walls and how has it influence operations?
    • 7Shifts
  9. What is one thing you feel restaurateurs don't do well enough or often enough?
    • Be present, be on the floor
  10. Name one service you've hired.
    • 7Shifts
  11. 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?
    • Not preparing is preparing to fail
    • Take the time to know the people around you
    • Practice candor

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 Matthew Swift for joining me for another awesome episode. Until next time!

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