Restaurant Unstoppable with Eric Cacciatore
In this episode we discuss: knowing your velocity;  attracting to oneself with visualizing; knowing when to keep your head down and when to speak up; the power of doing well by others: keeping in mind there are snakes in the grass; why building a great team will help you attack capital; and the importance of humbling yourself. 
Russell hails from East Texas and like so many people, he got his start in the restaurant and bar business as a way to pay for college. Russell started rising up the Austin bar scene earning his experience and paying his dues by managing some of Texas' top bars. in 2010 Russell was a finalist  for bartender of the year and in 2011 he won the title.  He has since traveled the country, helping bar owners become unstoppable as a free lance consultant. After having much success co-hosting Bar Rescue with Jon gaffer, Russell began his own company, Unlimited Liabilities.
Direct download: 199_Russell_Davis.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:58am EDT

In this episode we're chatting with Founder of, Brandon Hull. NextRestaurants is a site dedicated to helping restaurant owners and professionals master the world of digital media marketing. Brandon has slowly become our go-to-guy for all things new-age restaurant marketing. The focus of our discussion: content marketing.

What is it content marketing and how can you implement it in your marketing campaign? Learn that and more after listening in!

Direct download: 198_brandon_Hull_content_marketing2_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

In this episode we discuss: what is meant by "smooth is fast"; how hospitality is a game changer; why its important to never become complacent; the significance of doing one thing really well; the value of systems, processes, and procedures; how sam uses Swipely to leverage data and analytics; the impact of waking up early; and how to create passive income with your restaurants website. 

Glynn was raised in the restaurant biz, washing dishes and bussing tables at his father’s restaurant in North Conway, New Hampshire. He has followed in his fathers footsteps and at the age of 27, is the proud owner of his own restaurant, Chomp Kitchen and Drinks, located in Warren RI. If there is a burger award in Rhode Island to win, Chomp has won it. Now Chomp is making a national footprints on the burger scene as it was recently recognized as best burger in America by Restaurant Hospitality Magazine.

Direct download: 197_Sam_Glynn.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:25pm EDT

In this episode we discuss: what can happen when your "why" has an others focus; why you need to just take a chance, because you'll never open a restaurant unless you start; how important it is to do the research before you open; how being too lax can cause your people to be confused and unhappy; The benefits of opening a restaurant with your own money; open book management; hiring; leveraging technology; and the impact visioning can have on your restaurant. 

Opening Homeroom Mac & Cheese was a dream come true for Allison Arevalo and Erin Wade. Before becoming restaurant owners, both were working boring corporate jobs while daydreaming about one day opening a restaurant. After meeting at a busy Oakland cafe one fateful rainy day, they decided to quit their cushy jobs and sink their life savings into a mac and cheese restaurant.

Direct download: 196_Erin_Wade_and_Allison_Arevalo.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:48pm EDT

In this episode we discuss: the power of surrounding yourself with people who are passionate; why you should chase your passion and not a paycheck; partnering with people for who they are, not how much money they have; hiring and retaining employees; and how to stay inspired. 

Chef Alon Shaya is a Philadelphia native and Culinary Institute of America Grad. In 2001 he was recruited by Octavio Mantilla to join the Besh Restaurant Group, where he worked closely along side, Chef John Besh. Before long, Shaya became a partner in the Besh Restaurant group and opened Domenica, a family-oriented, authentic Italian Restaurant and shortly after opened Pizza Domenica, a casual Spin-off of Domenica Restaurant. Very recently Chef Shaya opened his 3rd restaurant Shaya which pays homage to his Israeli upbringing.In 2012, 2013, and 2014 Chef Shaya was a finalist for James Beard “Best Chef—South” and this year he won the title. Chef Also has a hand full of accolades form publications like Food & Wine, BonAppetit, Food52 and more.

Direct download: 195_Alon_Shaya.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:44pm EDT

In this episode we discuss: why you need to have a fire in your belly to not only serve your guest, but to also serve your community and those who work for you; the importance of selecting the right business partner, and what to do if you haven't selected the right business partner; the value of providing upward mobility and freedom of expression to your staff; a solution to the unbalanced income between front and back of house; the importance of understanding income; and why you need to have work-life-balance. 

Chef Erik Niel grew up in Louisiana fishing on the bayou – an upbringing that strongly influenced his cooking of Southern-inspired French classics. His restaurant Easy Bistro & Bar, is one of the most well-regarded restaurants in Chattanooga’s rapidly growing food scene. Erik and his wife Amanda are deeply committed to furthering Chattanooga’s food culture – they have spearheaded a restaurateur collective to promote independent, locally-owned restaurants. Erik has appeared on PBS’s Simply Ming and his food has been featured in The Local PALATE, food and wine, The Wall Street Journal, Thrillist, Men’s Journel and much more

Direct download: 194_Erik_Niel.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:48am EDT

In this episode we discuss: the importance of making life decisions that are right for you; why chasing money won't make you happy; why practical experience can be more powerful than formal education; the significance of being a veracious learner and having never ending curiosity; what to consider when selecting a business partner; the importance and impacts of sourcing locally; how to handle the challenges of drugs and alcohol in your restaurant; and why you need to trust your gut. 

Hailing from New Mexico, Hosea Rosenberg began his path to culinary fame while earning a degree in Engineering Physics from the University of Colorado.

Hosea’s passion to cook professionally drove him to work his way up the restaurant ranks, where he worked under the guidance of established chefs such as Wolfgang Puck, Kevin Taylor, and Dave Query, ultimately landing his first head chef position at Boulder’s Dandelion Restaurant.  After his tenure at Dandelion, it was the Big Red F Restaurant Group that became home, where he served as Executive Chef at Jax Fish House for six years.

Hosea has won numerous awards but most notably - winner of season five of Bravo TV’s Top Chef. Today Hosea is the Chef/Owner of BlackBelly Market in Boulder, CO.

Direct download: 193_Hosea_Rosenberg.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:42am EDT

What if you could just "click" and send a shock wave of communication and orders to all your purveyors and suppliers at once. What if the whole process took less than 5 minutes? What if it was FREE? Would you want to learn more? DUH! Of course you would. 

We're speaking to the Co-Founder of BlueCart, Konstantin Zvereff. BlueCart is an ordering platform that will make your life 10x more efficient and less stressful, improve you relations with your channels of supply, and just make you a way happier person in general. 

Direct download: 192_Blue_Cart.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:16pm EDT

in this episode we discuss:

  • the importance of self discipline, setting goals, and living intentially;
  • the impact of cutting drugs and alcohol out of your life.
  • how rewarding it can be to provide opportunity for your people.
  • why its so important to get a proven track recording before opening a restaurant. 
  • developing and providing opportunity to those in your restaurant in order to retain those in your restaurant. 

Executive Chef Eric Donnelly is a Seattle native and local chef favorite. He’s been working in and running kitchen for over 22 years. His first, personally owned restaurant, RockCreek Seafood & Spirits opened in Fremont to rave reviews in July 2013. This year Eric was a James Beard Award nominee for Best Chef Northwest, and was referenced as one of “Seattle’s Best Chefs” by The Seattle Times. RockCreek was named one of 2013’s Best New Restaurants by Seattle Magazine and one of the Top 20 US Restaurants by UrbanSpoon. Seattle Metropolitan Magazine included his Wild Mexican Prawns with Anson Mills Heirloom Grits as one of the top 50 dishes of the year.

Direct download: 191_Eric_Donnelly.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:02pm EDT

In this Episode we discuss: how to shave hours of work out of your week with Blue Cart; how you shouldn't be ashamed if you leave, then return to the restaurant industry; why providing a place for others to connect is so important; the significance of finding investors who invest more than just money; how to leverage the passions of your employees to benefit your restaurant.

Elizabeth Parker got her start in the restaurant industry during high school and college, but she fell in love with the industry during her time at Ripple. She went on to master her front of house skills at Roses Luxury. Today Parker is serving as Front of House Manger at Crane and Turtle in Washington DC, where she oversees the restaurants wine and beverage program as well as its social media.

Direct download: 190_Elizabeth_Parker.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:42am EDT

In this episode we discuss: why helping others and your community should be a part of your purpose; the power of being curious, and getting outside you comfort zone; why its important to know where you want to go with your business early on and why you need a clear vision on how to get there; Hiring A+ workers; Creating culture; why its important to have solid legal advice when starting.

Louis Basile is one of the most passionate leaders in the restaurant industry. He grew up in a family owned restaurant in New Jersey. Previously, Mr. Basile worked for the Chart House and Au Bon Pain. He founded The Wildflower Bread Company in Scottsdale, Arizona in 1995. Wildflower operates multiple restaurants and fresh dough Central Production Facility. Wildflower is an award winning fast casual brand that serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. On top of all of this Mr. Basile is extremely active in multiple trade associations.

Basile started and was Chairman of the Fast Casual Industry Council an affiliate of the National Restaurant Association. Mr. Basile is a National Restaurant Association Board Member and the Vice Chairman of the Nominating Committee. He is the Chairman of the Arizona Restaurant Association Educational Foundation and the immediate past Chairman of the Arizona Restaurant Association. Louis is a Board Director for Crisis Nursery. Mr. Basile serves on the Advisory Board for People Report/Black Box Intelligence and PeopleMatter. Louis is a founding member of Changers of Commerce a movement of leaders who believe there is a better way of practicing Capitalism.


Direct download: 189_Louis_Basile.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:52am EDT

In this episode we discuss: the significance of being in the business of helping others; why you need to push yourself to be constantly learning; the power of growing an email list; what the future of restaurant marketing looks like; what Facebook power editing and geo targeting is and the impact it can have on your restaurants marketing efforts; whats possible if you automate your restaurant; and what can happen to your restaurant  if you get a mentor and/or business coaches. 

Nick has been in the bar business since the day he was born, at the age of 26 he bought his first bar from his father. After 6 months of owning the bar he had 3 new bars open in his area, the economy was forcing his loyal regulars to hold on even tighter with their money, and the truth was, he was clueless about how to attract new paying customers. He looked into every industry website, magazine, book and attended all sorts of seminars on how to increase His sales and profits and how to get new customers in his doors, but he still had no luck. Then one day he hired a marketing coach. Within 8 months of working with his marketing coach, he doubled his sales, and had a consistent flow of new customers coming in his doors. 

He has now become the industries leading marketing and promotional authority & helped hundreds of bar owners all over the US and Canada take their business to the next level by applying his LRVO Marketing & Promotional Formula into their business. To learn more check out

Direct download: 188_Nick_Fosberg.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:32pm EDT

In this episode we discuss: How to be intentional with your energy; why your job as a leader is to serve; why you can't let your success go to your head; the importance of a clear vision and practical business plan; how to approach and recruit employees who currently working at other restaurants; the power of pulling back layers in an interview; why we need to drop the old school way of thinking; and the #1 most important number we need to track in our restaurant. 

From washing dishes at a pizza joint to leading a $30million restaurant brand, Mike Ganino has always been obsessed with culture, leadership, and helping his team find greatness. Mike has: opened over 100 restaurants; worked in fine dining as server, trainer, and bartender; was a Potbelly's manager at the age of 21, become national trainer for Potbelly and designed Potbelly U; worked with Lettuce Entertain You to launch Wow Bao; was Director of Ops, Training and HR at HomeMade Pizza company, where he help lead them to private equity partnership; was Partner and Chief Operating Officer at Protein Bar, taking it from 1 location to 15 (help lead them to a private equity partnership. Today he spends his time as a coach, speaker, and trainer. Mike teaches how to go for greatness by creating a work culture you love.

Direct download: 187_Mike_Ganino.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:20pm EDT

Today we're talking to Jeremy Julian, Gary Stotko, and Ryan Williams, a.k.a. The Restaurant Technology Guys who represent Custom Business Solutions, Inc. The topic of discussion: 7 things you can do to prepare for the mandatory salary increases. These changes are coming sooner than later. In an industry that is haunted with such little margins, the thought of a 25-30% increase in labor cost is down right frightening. The good news... you still have time to adapt and make changes in your restaurant that will help you survive and flourish. In this episode, the gentlemen and I share what changes we can make and what technologies we can leverage, to prepare for the future.

Direct download: 186_Restaurant_Tech_Guys.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:55pm EDT

In this episode we discuss: why Delores got into this industry so she could care for her community and create opportunity for her team; how a compelling vision, love for others, drive, work ethic, knowing whats right and understanding leadership can help you be successful; how to protect yourself from being spread to thin; Why it is important to keep you operating cost low early on; and much more. 

Five years ago Delores Tronco quit her safe job as an associate at a well respected public relations firm to chase her passion for the restaurant business. After quitting, she immediately immersed herself into the business taking on a management gigs so she could learn all she needed to one day open her own place.

Its safe to say she learned plenty. Today she is official "buck stopper" and partner at Work and Class. Delores oversees the restaurants operations and financial positions. On Saturday Nights, you can find her waiting tables, because that’s what she loves most!

Direct download: 185_Delores_Tronco_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:49pm EDT

In this episode we'll discuss: what influenced Fox to become a chef; the importance paying attention to detail; how mastering the little things pays off over time with the compounding effect; how a constant drive for perfection can be just as much as a weakness as it can be a strength; and how to use instagram to collect feedback

Chef Jeremy Fox got his start working back-of-house in southern restaurants at the age of 17. He would go on to stage in Europe at three Michelin Star properties, then he found himself back in the states, but this time on the West Coast, in California’s Bay Area. He fine-tuned his skills at Manresa, Rubicon, and Charles Nob Hill before landing the executive Chef position at Ubuntu, in Napa, CA. Under Fox’s tenure, Ubuntu was awarded a Michelin Star. In addition, Fox has garnered accolades including food and wine “Best New Chef 2008” and San Francisoco Chronicle “Rising Star Chef 2008”. In 2013 he joined friends Josh Loeb and Zoe Nathan at Rustic Canyon Wine Bar and Seasonal Kitchen, and this is where you can find him today.

Direct download: 184_Chef_Jeremy_Fox.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:18pm EDT

Listen to this episode to discover: why David chose to focus his law practice on the hospitality industry; what it means to be a nose to tail law firm; and what you can do to protect yourself and your restaurant from food born illnesses.

David Denney is the founder and chairs the Food, Beverage and Hospitality Practice Group and frequently speaks across the country on legal issues facing the restaurant, bar and hospitality industries. Denney is a frequent contributor to Restaurant Startup & Growth Magazine, and has had articles featured in QSR Magazine, Nightclub & Bar Magazine, In the Mix Magazine, Food Safety Solutions, the CMAA Newsletter and various newsletters.

Direct download: 183_David_Denney_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:15pm EDT

In this episode we discuss: how being a connector will serve you when as a restaurant owner; the importance of seeing talent in others and putting them in "the right lane"; why you should celebrate when your staff members leave you; tips to getting started as a POP-UP; why its important to create an email list; why you need to treat your restaurant as a medium to express who you are and tell your story; and understanding that success takes time and to not get discouraged when it doesn't happen over night. 

Sarah Gavigan is a graduate of Arizona State University. Gavigan has always been an entrepreneur at heart. She perused her entrepreneurism matching independent artist music into commercials. Somewhere in her 20 years, while living in Los Angeles, Gavigan developed a passion for Japenese ramen. Today Gavigan is exercising her passion as a the founder of Little octopusOtaku South, and Pop Nashville.


Direct download: 182_Sarah_Gavigan.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:26pm EDT

In this episode we discuss: Why we need to think of our restaurants as a place to restore others, both physically and emotionally; the significance of knowing your purpose and being happy; Why you should transform habits into rituals; the value of living intentionally; Four walls marketing; marketing through story; multi-purposing training content as marketing content; and the need to clearly explain what excellence looks like.

Rudy Miick began working in the restaurant industry at the age of 15, was a partner of a restaurant by the age of 24, and started his own consulting firm by 1978. Miick's work has since focused on the successful start-up, performance improvement, and growth of restaurants, resorts, and other foodservice operations. Miick has served on the board and faculty of the UCLA Extension’s Hospitality Management Program, was a 20 year leader at the Foodservice Consultants Society International and was a member of the Institute of Management Consultants. Outside of his regular consulting work, as founder of The Miick institute, Rudy coaches others in business and life growth, and is an award-winning author of The Leadership Cookbook, published by, and has authored hundred of article. Additionally, Miick has co-authored four books and regularly speaks at foodservice industry conferences and events.


Direct download: 181_Rudy_Miick.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:16pm EDT

In this episode we discuss: why you need to know your strengths and stay in your lane; the importance of being genuine; the significance of being a good listener and observer; knowing when to quit; why you need to be honest with your business plan; 

Ben Filecia has been managing restaurants in the Philadelphia area since the late 90’s. In 1999, Fileccia began his decade-long tenure managing the well known Rose Tattoo Café. His excellent work caught the eye of The Vetri Family of restaurant and in 2009 Fileccia joined their family as General Manager of Osteria. In 2012 Fileccia joined Kevin Spraga, and its been magic ever since.Today, Fileccia serves as Director of Operations of Sbraga Dining group, which consist of Sbraga and Fat Ham, and the forthcoming Sbraga and Company.Under Fileccia’s guidance Spraga Dining earned Esquire “Best New Restaurant” in 2012, Philadelphia Magazine’s 2013 List of “The 50 Best Restaurants”, and lastly Fileccia earned the title of “Best of Philly: General Manager” in Phialdelphia magazine in 2014.

Direct download: 180_Ben_Filecca.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:20pm EDT

Today we're going to discuss falling back in love with your restaurant.  Remember the excitement, nerves, and passion you had early on when you were first opening your restaurant or maybe when you first got your dream job in a restaurant? Now, fast forward a few years. That same burning desire to be in the restaurant every day slowly fizzles away. Before long you may even start becoming resentful and sick of the restaurant. If you know what I'm talking about, this episode is for you.

Misty, a repeat guest here at Restaurant Unstoppable, is the owner of 5 Squeeze In’s with the 6th on the way and does over 4 million in annually Sales. In addition to working on her restaurants she runs an incredible resource at is a consultant and is the Author of From Rags To Restaurants: The Secret Recipe.

Direct download: 179_6_ways_to_stay_in_love_2.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:33am EDT

If you're starting a restaurant or buying an existing restaurant you'll want to listen to this episode! Its Talking Tuesday, which means I'm going solo, and this week we're talking about the 7 things I took away from Misty Young's book From Rags To Restaurants: The Secret Recipe. Misty Young is the Owner of Squeeze In, which today is an extremely successful restaurant concept with 6 locations, and is slowly growing to become a fantastic franchise. In her book, Misty shares the journey of how she became such a success, and dives into the details of how she went from rags to restaurant riches.

Direct download: 178_Rags_to_Restaurants_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:46pm EDT

In this episode we'll discuss: The power of sharing you success with your team; marketing your restaurant one campaign at a time; creating brands around unique talents on your team; the significance of having a small scale mentality; and how effective the google platform can being on organizing and systemizing your restaurant.

Octavio Mantilla was born in Nicaragua and moved to New Orleans as a child. At sixteen, he got his first job in a restaurant and has worked his way through all the managerial levels. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Tulane University and an MBA from the University of New Orleans. He helped open Harrah’s Casino & Hotel in New Orleans; then to St. Louis as Harrah’s Director of Food Operations. He also opened numerous fine dining restaurants for Harrah’s nationwide. Octavio returned to New Orleans to be reunited with his old friend Chef John Besh at The Besh Steakhouse at Harrah’s. Octavio joined John as a partner in The Besh Restaurant Group, combining his vast experience in restaurant operations with a passion for customer service. Since becoming John’s partner, the Besh Restaurant Group has expanded to include Lüke San Antonio, Borgne, and Pizza Domenica with Johnny Sanchez Baltimore and Johnny Sanchez New Orleans.

Direct download: 177_Octavio_Mantilla_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:40am EDT

In this episode we discuss: how success is something you choose; the significance of social intelligence; the "magic formula"; why the hiring process starts with self-awareness; Why it is important to know your values; the significance of knowing your audience; and value in trusting your gut.

Steenrod is a graduate of Clemson University, and got his professional career started as a manager working at Apple South Restauants, where he specialized in leading new restaurant openings and helped propel Applebee’s towards becoming the world’s largest casual dining chain.He would go on to work at Café Tu tu Tango, where he would become director of human resources.From Tu Tu Tango, Steenrod would go on to join Celebrity Cruises as Vice President of Food and Beverage Operations. Under Steenrod’s leadership, Celebrity’s culinary team was the first cruise line to be featured at the prestigious, historic James Beard House in New York City.For almost 2 year now, Steenrod had been the Vice President of Operations at The Garces Group where he oversees more than 1,150 hospitality professionals from a wealth of different backgrounds and cultures, working in 15 award-winning restaurants and bringing the celebrated cuisine of Chef Jose Garces to thousand upon thousands of guest.

Direct download: 176_scott_steenrod.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:53pm EDT

In this episode we'll discuss: the satisfaction of witnessing positive guest experiences; how to manage multiple projects at once; the importance of getting people to buy into you and your vision; how to create trends instead of chasing trends; why its important to protect yourself with contracts; getting the initial capital to get started; and how body language can market your restaurant.

Charles, a Scotland native, got his start in the restaurant industry as a fry cook at Long John Silver. Throughout college and while studying for his bar exam, Charles worked in all parts of the restaurant and hospitality industry. Today, Charles owns and operates 4 Stout Burger and Beer locations, Bobby London, Gasser Lounge, Boomtown Brewery, Morrison and currently developing Trevous Tacos, Fred's Chicken and Biscuit, and Third Wave Coffee with Medda World Peace. Additionally, Charles consults on numerous restaurant and lounge projects throughout California and is recognized as one of the city’s leading experts on restaurant operations as well as licensing, permitting, and zoning of hospitality venues.

Direct download: 175_Charles_Lew.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

In this episode we discuss: taking a risk and pulling the trigger; being extremely competitive; how being the hardest working is more powerful than being the most talented worker; and the importance of having an insatiable desire to read and learn.

A native of Washington, D.C., Chef Craft became addicted to the restaurant life while living in Salt Lake City as a snowboard photographer. Chef Craft went on to cook at Bistro Toujours in Park City, Utah and Chateau Marmont in Los Angeles, California as well as a stage at Ryland Inn in Whitehouse Station, New Jersey before making the leap to open a restaurant of his own. In 2005 at the age of 25, Chef Craft started it all with Niche restaurant in St. Louis Missouri. Today The Niche Food Group includes Taste by Niche, Brasserie by Niche, Pastaria and opening soon Porano Pasta. Chef Craft’s creative yet simple food has earned him recognition as a Food & Wine Best New Chef, Inc. magazine’s “Star Entrepreneurs under 30” as well as this year’s James Beard Foundation award for Best Chef: Midwest.

Direct download: 174_Chef_Gerard_Craft_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:55pm EDT

What we'll be discussing in this episode: Building great teams, over delivering, taking risks, seeing the potential in something small, staying true to your brand, and organic marketing.

Eric has been a part of the restaurant and bar industry for 16 years. Born and raised in San Diego, he started bussing and waiting tables, then quickly moving behind the bar. Eric was a bartender at a few different clubs before settling in as a manager of the Tavern at the Beach. Soon after graduating from San Diego State University with a degree in communication, Eric knew he had found his niche. In 2003, after much hard work and determination, he formed a partnership with Mark Sarillo and Joe Vaught, who were the owners of Tavern at The Beach. Two years later, Verant Group was formed. Since then, the company's portfolio has expanded to include 7 locations in California and Arizona.

Direct download: 173_Eric_Lingenfelder.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:11pm EDT

Never stop learning, stay driven and motivated, teach your team about the business and tap into their higher needs, and how to use photo with social media; just a few of the things we'll be discussing this in this episode.

In 2008, after years of gaining experience in the industry as a pastry chef, Summers Joined Lisa Carlson to open The Chef Shack; a food truck specializing in selling mini-donuts at farmers markets. The Chef Shack has since expanded to include multiple trucks, and two brick and motor locations, which include: Chef Shack Ranch; and Chef Shack Bay City. Chef shack has been featured by USA Today, Forbes Magazine, Saveur Magazine, Bon Appetit!

Direct download: 172_Carrie_Summer.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

In this episode we cover: the power of having a life and business partner who compliments you; why its important to keep your standards high and to take care of people even when times are hard and pennies of few; the significance of being different and offering a unique selling proposition; and why you need to have an undying will to succeed! 

Braden and Yasmin met and discovered their passion for hospitality at Cornell University’s School of Hotel and Administration. After graduating both honed their skills learning from and working with the acclaimed Hillstone Restaurant Group in California and Texas. In 2011 Braden and Yasmin Opened Malai Kitchen. Braden mans the back of house and Yasmin runs the front of house. Under their direction, Malai has garnered notoriety for its commitment to great hospitality and polished approach to all aspects operations.

Direct download: 171_braden_and_Yasmin_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Its Talking Tuesday! On most Tuesdays I go solo, but this week we have a special REPEAT guest, Nick Sarillo joining us to discuss numerous topics covered in his book: A Slice of the Pie: How to Build a Big Little Business

We do a lot of talking at Restaurant Unstoppable about the importance of having purpose, building a good culture, and developing trust and respect among your community and team members, but it is not always so clear how to do it right. Thats why this book is a must read for anyone looking to grow a success restaurant.

Nick doesn't just tell us to grow an amazing culture, he shows us how by making an example of his own success. There are tons of leadership, business, and culture building books out there, but this book is unlike others in that it written by someone who is in the industry, sharing what works, but more importantly, how to make it work. 


Direct download: 170_Talking_Tuesday_Nick_Sarillo_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:12pm EDT

In this episode we discuss: the importance of having clarity in your strengths and weaknesses, why you need to stay challenged and true to your goals, how to attract a great team, why culture and a list of core values is so important, and the importance of a clear brand and target audience. 

For over 30 years, Steve has been fortunate to open and operate more than a dozen restaurant start-ups. Over the years Steve has become an expert in the fields of restaurant systems and cost control. His experiences has been so rich and rewarding he decided to start The Restaurant Excellence Group, where he is dedicated to helping restaurant owners and hospitality professionals get more out of their business, careers and life.

Direct download: 169_Steve_Smith.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:25am EDT

What we'll discuss today: quitting while your ahead; being able to pivot and adopt to guest needs; Paying attention to the numbers; and the power of a good website. 

Nick has worked in the restaurant industry since he was 13 years old. It was while attending Drexel University and managing 3 Saladworks location, when he knew he would one day own and operate his own restaurants. He first attempted ownership started in 2005 with Cavo Cafe. After eight years of successfully operating one location, Nick decided it was time to open a second location and in 2013 he got to work opening Wingcraft Kitchen & Beer Bar, a restaurant that focuses on craft beer and craft food. Today he is the successful owner and operator of two concepts and he is crushing it!

Direct download: 168_Nick_Ballias_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:38pm EDT

In this episode we discover the power of super niching, scaling with a food truck,  extreme people and service orientation, and learning to say no. 

Previously the manager of two specialty shoe stores, Nate has chased and caught his dream as the proud Founder and Owner of Natedogs; one of the most recognized food trucks and hotdog stands in the country. Aside from his incredible dogs, home made mustards and sauces, Nate is known for just being a stand up, good dude. Natedogs has been named Eater’s Best Hotdogs in America, Expedias Top 5 foodtrucks in America, and Thrillest 21 best food trucks in America. 

Direct download: 167_Nate_Beck.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:03am EDT

Today we're discussing the do's, dont's, and best practices to use for Facebook. More specifically, we'll be discussing how to engage others on Facebook, how to go about delegating Facebook to staff members, the most common mistakes made, and what additional tool you can be using to maximize your Facebook efforts. The topics we'll be discussing are not breaking news stuff, but THEY ARE  MUST KNOW stuff and its surprising... and a little alarming to know how many people just don't know how to do it right.  

Our authority on this matter, James Eling, is the Founder and Host of Secret Sauce: The Restaurant Marketing Podcast, where they discuss marketing ideas, strategies and tactics from restaurant marketing experts . James has a passion for helping Restaurant owners build successful business that allow them to make more money whilst working less hours.

Direct download: 166_James_eling.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

In this episode we learn about the power of surrounding yourself with intelligent people, marketing yourself by using actions, keeping your give-a-shit reflex sharpened, and why you need to serve and care for your community. 

Chef Nashan got his culinary start while growing up in his families Northern New Mexican restaurant. Eventually, he would go on to graduate of the Culinary Institute of America. After a number of stages both state side and abroad, Nashan returned home to St. Louis to open Sidney Street Café in 2003. After 10 years in business, in 2013 Sidney Street Café was named Restaurant of the Year. In August 2014 Nashan opened his second location, The Peacemaker. Nashan was named a James Beard Award finalist for: Best Chef Midwest in 2014, after four years as semifinalist

Direct download: 165_Kevin_Nashan.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:32pm EDT

Are you interested to know what the tech tends of the future are? Are you not too sure whats meant by data analytics? Or are you familiar with what data analytics is, but you're uncertain on how to leverage it? Do you want to buy new restaurant technology, but you're uncertain about going through the purchasing process? If you answered yes to any of these questions, this interview is for you. 

Rob Grimes is the CEO and President of The International Food and Beverage Technology Association. A non profit trade association which promotes the use of technology with the global food and beverage industries. Additional, Rob is the Founder and Chair of FSTEC Conference in Washington DC. Today we’re going to discuss what Restaurant Tech trends Restaurateurs should be aware of, how to differentiate between trends and fads, what to consider when choosing new technologies, and what resources exist to help you stay ontop of ever changing landscape. 

Direct download: 164_Rob_Grimes_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:10am EDT

Today Oliver Camacho teaches us: why its important to keep things light and fun; the power of using body language on the floor; the significance of developing rapport and trust through servant leadership; how important it is to support and educate your staff; and why you should not bull-shit your guest. 

Oliver, a formally-trained opera singer and informally-trained podcast host, joined the Topolobampo team in 1999 as a server. In 2014 he took over Topolobampo’s dining room as manager. During his time at Topolobampo they’ve been nominated by the James Beard Foundation three times for Outstanding Service, and once for Outstanding Restaurant. The Michelin Guide has given them 1 star three years consecutively. Wine spectator has given them the Award of Excellence 21 times! Most recently, Oliver accepted an offer to become AGM and director of service of Armour and Swift, the much-talked-about upcoming project by Boka Group and B Hospitality.

Direct download: 163_Oliver_Camacho.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:40pm EDT


Are you not sure what we mean when we say, "Live with a definite purpose and start with why."? Then you won't want to miss this episode, because todays guest embodies just that. 

Christine has spent more than a quarter century in the restaurant industry and is the brains behind Fresh Thymes Eatery. Fresh Thyme Eatery was inspired by Christine’s own experience of living with celiac disease and Multiple sclerosis; she wanted to make a difference by providing real nourishing food to improve the health of her guest, because she knows first hand that food can be medicine.

Direct download: 162_Christine_Ruch.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:04am EDT

If you have the urge to do something truly incredibly, you need to start with WHY. This Talking Tuesday we'll be discussing Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action, written by Simon Sinek. David Mead will be joining us for this discussion.

David is a part of Simon Sinek’s “Star With Why” team and lives with the purpose to help leaders create an environment where people show up to work, because they want to, not because they have to; an environment in which people are inspired to contribute to something bigger than themselves. David helps people look at their careers and organizations from an alternative perspective; to consider their ‘Why’ (their higher cause or purpose), then to think, act and communicate in a way that brings that Why to life.

Direct download: 161_David_Mead.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:33pm EDT

Listen in and her about: how  in the restuarnt industry hard work and determinism trumps intellegence and skill; why you need to be on a first name basis with failure; and why you need to keep a logical ear open when iterviewing your cooks. 

At the age of 15, like so many do, Kurt got his start in the restaurant business as a dishwasher. He continued to work in the industry until finishing graduate school in Scotland. It was at this point a close French friend asked if he’d want to go into business together.

In 1997, Kurt and his friend opened a 20,000 square foot brewery and gastro-pub in Lyon, France. Kurt would eventually sell his portion of the business, return home, attend business school at Berkley, and started ChefsTable - a business built on the premise of partnering with Chefs in a way that lets the chef focus on what they’re good at: food.

Direct download: 160_Kurt_Huffman.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:43pm EDT

Today we talk about how powerful it is to: have the desire to learn, surround yourself with people who are better than you at doing certain things and why you need the right capital and not just any capital when you're getting started.

Larry is a graduate of Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration and has over 30 years of experience as a restaurant company owner, professional manager, and industry consultant. Reinstein Founded and held the position of President and CEO for Fresh Concepts, the company that owned and operated brands including: Fresh City, Souper Salad, Planet Coffee, Fresh Concept Café, Pistachio’s and Church Street Bar and Grill. Following this, he served Salsarita’s Fresh Cantina as President, where he had a HUGE impact on the brands success. Today, he is serving as president of LJR Hospitality Ventures where he offers strategic counsel to his clients. He is the recipient of the Cornell Hospitality Innovator Award and the Best of the Best Food and Beverage Award from the Young Presidents Organization. On top of all of this, he is the current chair of the National Association Fast Casual Industry Council.

Direct download: 159_Larry_Reinstein.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:03pm EDT

Listen to this episode to find out where perseverance, good listening skills, a constant strive for improvement and having a solid sense of purpose can get in your career as a restaurant professional.

Chef John Sundstrom is a graduate of the New England Culinary Institute. He has worked in kitchens all over the country and has traveled the world in pursuit of  his culinary and personal purpose. His accolades suggest he's found that purpose as he's been named "Best New Chef" by Food and Wine Magazine and was named "Best Chef Northwest" by the James Beard foundation in 2007 following nominations in 2005 and 2006. Today, you'll find Sundstrom serving as Chef/Owner of Lark RestaurantBitter/Raw and Slab Sandwiches + Pie in Seattle, WA.

Direct download: 158_johonathan_Sundstrom.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:43pm EDT

Are you a professional in a fast casual concept that could use some operational efficiency? Or maybe you're a casual dinning establishment which needs a solution for managing your wait list. Perhaps you're looking for a way to collect information from your guest at check out? If so, you won't want to miss this episode!

Today we're talking to John Weber, the President and CEO of Long Range Systems. If you're anything like me, when you think of LRS, the first thing which comes to mind is pagers, but LRS offers so much more than that! In this conversation we discuss how LRS has evolved over the years, and the multiple products they're offering. Tune in and dissever how you can leverage these tools and systems to operate more efficiently and deliver the ultimate guest experience.


Direct download: 157_Authority_Thursday__Long_Ranger_Systems.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:35am EDT

In need of inspiration? Want to learn how to live intentionally to make your restaurant dream come true? Then check out Chef Lisa Schroeder and her advice on what it takes to be successful in the restaurant biz.

23 years ago, Schroeder was driven by a vision of creating a restaurant that served food which only a mother would make. Schroeder would devote the next 8 years of her life studying at The Culinary Institute of America, traveling, staging, working and training to develop the skills she would need to be successful. In 2000 her vision became reality when she opened Mothers Bistro and Bar in Portland, Oregon. On top of this, Schroeder is a mother, grandmother, author and is extremely involved with her community. Now sit back, hit play and get inspired.

Direct download: 156__Lisa_Schoeder.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:44pm EDT

In need of some inspiration? Check out Johan Engman. Todays episode is littered with gems of advice like, "If you're determined to do something go with you gut feeling." For more gems like this, crush the play button. 

Engman arrived to the United States when he was 16 and got his start working in the restaurant industry as a dish washer in a small Italian restaurant. He moved on to bussing tables at Embassy Suites before working as a server at a number of local restaurants. Just working in restaurants wasn’t enough, he wanted to be an owner. In 2008 Engman opened The Fig Tree Café. Seven years later, Engman now oversees operations and owns three successful branches of Fig Tree Café along with Café Cantata and his newest venture Breakfast Republic.

Direct download: 155_Johan_Engman.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:42am EDT

Chef Russo has over thirty Eight years of experience in the food and beverage industry and has held numerous titles including: Excutive chef, general manager, food and beverage director, consultant and corporate chef. He’s been featured in Gourment, Food and Wine, Bon Appetit, New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Los angeles Times, and the USA Today, just to name a few. He’s won several “best” awards, which we don’t have the time to dive into, because there so many. He has been at semifinialist for james beard best chef Midwest for the past 7 year and was a finalist 5 of those 7 years. Today he serves as Executive Chef for Heartland Restaurant and Wine Bar in Saint Paul MN.

Direct download: Lenny_Russo.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:42pm EDT

In this episode we learn about the power of list making, delegation, getting to know your guest, avoiding hipsters, and accommodating the people that work for you. 

Angela Stowell got her start in the hospitality industry scooping ice cream and boy... has she come along way! She has been a server and a wine sales rep, but her current role is as the Chief Financial Officer of Ethan Stowell Restaurants, which consist of (and correct me if I’m wrong) 9 restaurants (all with their own unique concept), two pizza shops, a wine cellar, and an artisan pasta shop.


Direct download: 153_Angela_Stowell.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:25am EDT

Bomb of the the day: How to keep your staff from stealing product behind your back. Today's guest, James R. Miller, has been working in the restaurant industry for over 24 years. He’s worked in both independent and franchise operations and has gained a wealth of knowledge along the way. Today, when he’s not at the restaurant he’s hosting Run-it-Right podcast. The run it right podcast will entertain and inform you, with news, interviews, opinions and comedy segments, mostly about the restaurant industry. 

Direct download: 152_James_Miller.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Today's guest SLAMS us with actionable advice from implementing systems, developing people, retaining staff and holding weekly meetings. If you know your restaurant needs changes and you don't know where to start hit play, because Darren provides step by step lists on where we can get started on becoming UNSTOPPABLE!

Darren Dennington has over 30 years of experience in the hospitality industry and has an extensive background as a Food and Beverage Director, Executive Chef, General Manager, Restaurant Owner, Staff Trainer and Consultant. Nowadays, you can find Darren serving as founder of Service with Style Hospitality Group, a hospitality firm offering secret shopping, restaurant coaching and team training services.

Direct download: 151_Darren_Dennington.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

If you believe in the power of positive energy and optimism then this guest, his stories and advice are for you! Michael Biesemeyer has been working in various capacities in restaurants for over 22 years. Along the way he has developed a skill set in new media that is specifically tailered to the service industry. Additionally he is the founder of Swerver LLC, which has a purpose of shifting social, both for the employees and guests.


Direct download: 150_Michael_Biesemeyer.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:55pm EDT

In this episode Chef Franco share how important Passion, Dedication, and the drive to always be better helped him achieve success.

Chef Carubia developed an appreciation for inspired cuisine at a young age. Raised in England with Italian heritage, Franco’s cultural exploration deepened his passion for fresh and local ingredients. His role as Sous Chef and Chef de Cuisine at a number of Boston’s finest restaurants is evident from his concept development to his final presentation. Today he serves The Winsor House in Duxbury, MA as their Executive chef.

Direct download: 149_Chef_Franco_Carubia.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:45pm EDT

In this episode Chef Franco share how important Passion, Dedication, and the drive to always be better helped him achieve success.

Chef Carubia developed an appreciation for inspired cuisine at a young age. Raised in England with Italian heritage, Franco’s cultural exploration deepened his passion for fresh and local ingredients. His role as Sous Chef and Chef de Cuisine at a number of Boston’s finest restaurants is evident from his concept development to his final presentation. Today he serves The Winsor House in Duxbury, MA as their Executive chef.


Category:general -- posted at: 1:31pm EDT

It's Talking Tuesday and you know what that means! I'm going solo! In this episode we're discussing The New One Minute Manager, by Ken Blanchard and Spencer Johnson M.D. This book that has been mention a hand full of times on the show by past guest and its purpose is to help you lead and manage more efficiently and in a way that promotes positivity and personal growth among yourself as well as your staff. According to the book there are three secrets to becoming a one minute manager. My goal with today's episode to share those secrets with you and to also provide a few extra tidbits along the way. Now hit play, sit back and absorb the lessons I've learned from reading this book!

Direct download: 148_Talking_Tuesday__One_Min_Manager.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:19pm EDT

Listen to this episode for: incredible stories of perseverance; to learn about the power of optimism; and for some actionable advice on leveraging data, loyalty programs, and email lists. 

Kamron Karington bought a run-down, nearly bankrupt pizzeria. On the first day nearly half his crew walked out on him. Over the next three years and against all odds, Kamron was able to increase sales from $12,000 a month to $149,000 a month. Since then Kamron has been an author, consultant, and speaker, sharing the secrets behind his wild success. Today, he serves as the Founder of Repeat Returns, which grows sales for high-volume independents, multi-unit and Franchise operators nationwide.

Direct download: 147_Kamron_Karington.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:55am EDT

This Thursday we're speaking with Al Brandano. Al grew up in a bakery, has owned his own restaurants, is a commercial pilot, and when he's not flying he's chasing his entrepreneurial passion of making story telling cool again with The topic of discussion: the impact of engaging your guest and community with the power of story telling. Listen to this episode and discover how your personal stories, the stories of your purveys, and the stories of your guest can be leveraged to market your restaurant by tapping into the psychographics of those you touch.

Direct download: 146_Authority_Thursday_Making_Story_Telling_Cool_Again_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:29pm EDT

Discover the rewards and legitimacies of being a career server. Being a server is an extremely rewarding and fulfilling career and Paul shares his approach and secrets to leading a happy and profitable life as a server.

Paul C. Paz has been a professional career waiter and Hospitality Consultant since 1980. He authored the books Service At Its Best and The Professional Server. He’s served on the board of Directors for the Oregon Restaurant Association and was the President of the National Waiters Association. First and foremost, Paul is a professional waiter. When Paul isn’t tending to the needs of his guest, he manages; an online community of career servers with the mission to elevate the status of waiters in America to a professional career level, a career of Choice offering UNLIMITED opportunity.

Direct download: 145_Paul_Paz.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Listen to this episode and learn about using your power for good and why what you're doing doesn't matter unless you're doing the right things for others. Also, Matt Vannini will wrap up by dropping "The Top 5 things a restaurant should be doing to be successful."

Matt grew up in the restaurant industry and has been working in it for over 20. He has: owned, operated, and sold three award winning Italian restaurants; served as General Manager and Operations Mangers for Red Robins; and is an expert on restaurant management systems and technologies. Today, he serves as Founder and Partner of Restaurant Solutions, Inc. which provides operational and financial management systems and training for owners and managers of independent single and multi-unit restaurants around the country. On top of all this Matt serves as an Adjunct Professor for Johnson and Wales University.

Direct download: 144_Matt_Vannini_Top_5_Things.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Robert is an “old school” restaurant pro who came up in the business starting at age 14 in Chicago, Illinois. With a dual degree in Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management, Robert has worked for some of the best in the hospitality business. His Chicago experiences, in addition to working in memorable San Antonio restaurants left him with a love of comfort food well served that few in the industry can claim. Currently, Chef is serving as the Chef/Proprietor of the Magnolia Pancake Haus in San Antonio, Texas. Listen to this episode and learn about the power of listening to mentors, failing forward, leveraging technology, developing culture in your restaurant and being yourself! 

Direct download: 143_Chef_Robert_Flemming.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:20pm EDT

If you've been listening to Restaurant Unstoppable, by now you've picked up on how important it is to establish a positive and inspiring culture in your restaurant. Developing that culture of greatness all starts with creating an impactful mission statements and visions of the future.

But what happens when we're a part of a great operation that hasn't taken this vital step? Many of us may join a team as a supervisor or manager and its our job to enforce that positive culture. When those missions and visions are hazy, what are we to do? I suggest you be proactive and gather that information. Listen and I'll share how you can overcome such an issue! 

Direct download: 142_Talking_TuesdayMission_and_Vision_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:08pm EDT

Listen today to find out how David uses his systems to help the independent business owner compete with chain restaurants. Chain restaurants have already made all their mistakes and created systems and processes to avoid them.  Davids system helps independents even the odds and avoid those costly mistakes.

Having grown up in his family's restaurant and catering business, David has an intimate understanding of the needs and challenges facing the independent restaurant operator. A graduate of Northeastern University, David has spent the majority of his life studying and refining the systems that make franchises so successful. Today, as the founder of Smile Button Enterprise and, his mission is to help the independent restaurant operator compete and thrive in the sea of franchise and chain restaurants with SMART systems that increase your profits, reduce your stress and actually allow you to have a personal life.

Direct download: 141_David_Scott_Peters.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Jim got his start in the hospitality industry at the ripe age of 15, when he worked in a quick service operation. While in college, Jim improved upon his hospitality skills, by learning the role of server and bar tender. With a degree in accounting, he began to take on more technical, operational, and financial roles such as a restaurant manager, controller and CFO. Eventually, Jim practiced as a CPA and advisor to independent restaurants throughout the U.S. regarding operational, financial, cost control, and profitability issues. Today, with an abundance of wisdom and experience, Jim serves as Founder and Publisher at is an incredible resource consisting of business plan templates, operating systems & procedures, checklist, training manuals, and webinars.

Jim is joining us on this Authority Thursday to discuss the 3 characteristics of successful independent restaurant owners.

Direct download: 140_Athority_Thursday_Jim_Laube.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Like last week, this week's Talking Tuesday is discussing Danny Meyer's Setting the Table: The Transforming Power of Hospitality in Business. In his book he shares "5 A's for effectively addressing mistakes." If used,  these 5 A's can help you convert unsatisfied guest into raving fans. Look, we all know that its a matter of time before someone makes a mistake; it happens. Mistakes make us human, its how we handle these mistakes, that that will define what type of human we are. When faced with mistakes, do not admit defeat and settle for an unhappy guest; choose to recognize a mistakes as an opportunity to take action and  show the world how freaking awesome your restaurant is. If  you arm yourself with the knowledge that failure isn't when you make a mistake, but instead, its when you fail to capitalize on the opportunities that come with the mistakes you made, you and your team, will become truly unstoppable.


Direct download: 139_5_As_to_effectively_address_a_mistake.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:16pm EDT

Hailing from Boston, MA Chef Buonagurio got his experience the good old fashioned way; by working and learning from great mentors and getting his hands filthy dirty with experience. His past mentors include. Executive Chef Paul Callahan (past guest) and restaurateur Jason Santos. Now, armed with the experience he needs for success, Chef Buonagurio is KILLING IT at Parla located in Boston’s North End. Chef Callahan Said I had to talk to you.  

Direct download: 138_Chef_Eric_Buonagorio_Living_with_Definite_Purpose.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Credit card security is no joke, yet its funny how little restaurant professional know about EMV and what they'll be accountable for starting 10/15. Today we have an authority on restaurant technology, Jeremy Julian. He is going to break down what we need to know and provide us with 6 actions we can take that will ensure we'll be prepared when that October deadline hits. 


Its Talking Tuesday, and that means I'm going solo! Today we're talking about how to attract, hire, and keep great people; hands down one of the biggest challenges in this industry. The advice I'm sharing in this episode comes straight from the most recommended book on the show:  Setting the Table: The Transforming Power of Hospitality in Business, by Danny Meyer. I shredded through his book with the mission of highlighting all the little bombs of knowledge I could find regarding attracting, hiring, and keeping great people. Two things will happen after listening to this episode: 1) you'll have a new outlook on hiring and training your staff, and 2) you'll be one step closer to becoming unstoppable.

Chef Callahan earned his Executive Chef title, the good old fashion way; with hard work, experience and by surrounding himself with incredible restaurant professionals. Along his journey he has worked at incredible restaurants like Sel de la Terre, L’Espalier, The Butcher Shop and Herb Lyceum. While at The Butcher Shop he honed his skills for charcuterie, and picked up Barbra Lynch’s business philosophy. Today, you can find Chef Callahan heading No.8 Kitchen & Spirits in Amesbury, MA, while doing what he loves; using all the senses incorporated with cooking, being true to the natural flavors of food and mentoring others.

Direct download: 135_Chef_Paul_Callahan_Learn_To_Love_To_Fight.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Mike Solomonov and Steve Cook are the men behind CooknSolo a restaurant group which consist of Zahav, Abe Fisher, Di zengoff, Percy Street Barbecue, and four Federal Donuts locations. Mike is a product of the Florida Culinary Institute and Steve was molded from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania and the French Culinary Institute. Their restaurants are getting accolades from all angles, some of which include: two 3 bell and, one 4 bell ratings from the Philadelphia Inquirer (3 bells is excellent and 4 bells is superior), two of their restaurants were listed on Travel and Leisure’s list of 50 best new restaurants in the world and They were featured in The National Eater 38: Where to eat in 2015. Mike and Steve also have their first book Zahav: A World of Israeli Cooking, hitting selves in October of this year. These two chefs say food is secondary in their restaurants; hit play and find out whats primary. 

Direct download: 134_CooknSolo.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Manager at Everymans Espresso in New York, New York, Lewontin has been called the best Barista in the City. This title isn’t just the opinion of his guests, its been earned through entering and winning numerous barista competitions. Everyman’s Espresso has been featured in Food and Wine, Bon Appetit and The New York Times for its incredible coffees, hospitality and service. In November Lewontin won 1st place in the Northeast Barista Competition, which landed him a position to compete in the US Barista Championships where he won 4th. AWESOME! Listen to this episode and discover why Lewontin stresses the value of systems and providing an incredible guest experiences.

Direct download: 133_Sam_Lewontin.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Today we're interviewing Joe Lipple of NoWait. NoWait is a host management and guest seating app. Your ability to create positive experiences is what will determine how often your guest choose to frequent your restaurant. By using technology to leverage communication and information, NoWait is able to create a positive guest experience hours before they even steps foot in your establishment. NoWait is essentially a turn key system that will make life for your staff easy and profits at your restaurant greater. Click play, to discover why NoWait was created and why you should seriously consider implementing it into your restaurant operation. Like, ASAP.

Direct download: 132_Authority_Thursday_NoWait.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Jon Swire is the CEO of Chop Daddy’s; a fast-casual, multi-unit barbecue concept in the greater of Los Angeles area. Prior to opening Chop Daddy’s Swire was busy acquiring over 11 years of real estate experience and had risen to become a top-performing broker at multiple firms. In addition to practicing real estate, Swire also teaches real estate at UCLA Extension. In 2014 Zagat named Chop Daddy’s as a Top 10 Best New Sandwich and they’ve been called one of four BBQ Chains Catching Fire in the nation. Listen to Swire as he offers his unique perspective as not only a restaurant professional, but as a successful entrepreneur.


Direct download: 131_Jon_Swire_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Hailing from New York, Richard DiSisto is the Principle of Vantage Restaurant Group. DiSisto’s move West was driven by his desire to recreate his families restaurant business and he’s had great success in doing just that. Today, The Vantage Restaurant Group is most well known for Tipple and Brine, and Tunnel Bar. Both of which have been receiving great accolades from sources like the Los Angele Times, Zagat, Thrillist, CBS and The USA Today. Crush that play button and discover how to "get it done." Richard shares how he tackled what seemed like the impossible, with a nothing to lose attitude, determinism, and creativity.

Jeff Benjamin caught the hospitality bug when he was a young man working as a buss boy.  His love for the industry brought him to Umass-Amherst where he majored in Hospitality Business. While working corporate operations in New York City, Jeff met Marc Vetri, and a friendship was formed. In 1998 Jeff was called on to joined Mark Vetri as General Manager at Vetri Restaurant. After two years, Jeff became a partner. Vetri Restaurant has evolved into the Vetri Family: a restaurant group consisting of 7 concepts that has earned countless accolades. Additionally, Jeff Benjamin is the author of Front of the House: Restaurant Manners, Misbehaviors & Secrets a revealing and wryly humorous behind-the-scenes look at the gracious art of great restaurant service. Click play and hear Jeff's stories, advice, and why he says if he could go back in time to do it all over, he wouldn't change a thing. 

Direct download: 129_Jeff_Benjamin_Be_Nice.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Culinary Institute of America Graduate, Ed Doyle, has over 30 years in the hospitality industry. During his tenure at Boston's Aura, it was named one of the best new restaurants in the US. His passion for restaurant operations led to form the RealFood Consulting, where he makes the restaurant dreams of his restaurant clients into reality. Doyle has been featured in Food and Wine, Restaurant Business, and food arts magazine. Many of my past guest, the people we're looking to for advice, like Andy Husbands and Garret Hawker, have gone to RealFood for consultation; Doyle is the mentors mentor. Listen to this episode and find out why. 

Direct download: 128_Ed_Doyle_learn_from_those_in_your_network_and_ask_how_you_can_help.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:24am EDT

Graduate of the Restaurant School in Philadelphia, Sharon Ardiana is the Chef proprietor of Gialina and Ragazza. Her restaurants have been featured in the New York Times, and the San Francisco Chronicle listed her restaurants in their top 100 4 years consecutively! Additionally Thrillest recognized Ragazza as one of the countries Top 33 Best Pizzas In America. Smash that play button and find out what Chef Ardiana says, "serve every meal as if you were making it for your mother on her birthday."


Direct download: 127_Sharon_Ardiana.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Restaurateur and entrepreneur AJ Gilbert has been managing restaurants in some for over 25 years. Today, his the founder and CEO of ChefSheet. com.   ChefSheet was started as a way to help balance the relationship between restaurant vendors and restaurants. Most medium to small restaurant operations place orders for product, get deliveries with an invoice, and pay what they are asked, for the product, by the vendor. Restaurants have little power to negotiate and to shop the market, because they have little time to handle these mundane tasks, or they lack the tools to know why the prices they're paying have changedChefSheet addresses many of these things by helping understand your prices over time, your plate costs, and even what others are paying for product. Tune in to this episode to learn more about ChefSheet and why I may be a good option for your restaurant! 

Wisconsin native and Culinary Institute of America Graduate, Mchugh kicked off his culinary career in New Orleans. It didn’t take long for Mchugh to get picked up by the Besh Restaurant Group, where he excelled. Mchugh eventually relocated to San Antonio to open Luke, along side Besh Restaurant Group. Mchugh has overcame one of the most serious challenges life can throw at you; cancer. He has overcame! Today he is living his dream as the Chef/ Proprietor of Cured, located in Peal; San Antonios culinary center. Cured has been named one of the top 50 for “America’s Best New Restaurants 2014” by Bon Appétit and one of the six select Runners-up for Esquire’s 2014 Food & Drink Awards: “America’s Best New Restaurants.” Listen to this episode and you'll learn how to seasoning your life with experience with help you in the long run.

Direct download: 125-_Chef_Steve_McHugh_Explains_Success_By_Seasoning..._Your_Life.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Illinois native, Kevin Boehm is the Co-Founder of Boka Restaurant Group. Since 1992 he has contributed to the opening of 17 successful restaurants with 4 additional restaurants schedule to open in 2015. From the James Beard Foundation, to Michelin Stars, the Boka Restaurant Group has accolades coming in from all angles. Boehm and his business partner, Rob Katz, have won Restaurateurs of the Year from Time Out Chicago in 2010, the Chicago Tribune in 2011, and were named Empire Builders of the Year by Eater National as well in 2011. In 2013 Boka Restaurant Group was named one of the RH25 in Restaurant Hospitality Magazine. Listen to todays episode and discover how unreasonable men, like Kevin Boehm change the world through love for people and competition. 

Roger Beaudoin’s 18 years of experience in the restaurant and hospitality industry is backed with a business degree from Bryant College and an MBA from Babson College. He has headed four restaurant and hospitality operations in all. His most recent restaurant, The Matterhorn Ski Bar, a seasonal, 4 month restaurant and bar, which generated 1 million dollars in annual sales. Today, with all of his knowledge and experience he is kicking off his newest venture, Listen in to this episode and discover why Roger says, "We need to train our staff to be their own individual brands."

Atlanta native, Chef Chris Hill is the proprietor and personality behind the brands, Bachelor Kitchen, and his bistro The 3 Way Café. When asked his mission in life Hill states, “My goal is to reach people on any number of levels. For me, I am lucky, I get to do that through food and through writing stories – things we can all relate to, a common ground of sorts.” I'm excited to share this interview with you because of the unique and creative way Chef Hill entered this industry. He is a shining example of how persistence, determination and creativity can make you become UNSTOPPABLE! 

WOOT WOOT! First husband and wife interview! Erin and Tim Archuleta are the proprietors of ICHI Sushi + NI Bar as well as Ichi Kakiya. Since opening, ICHI Sushi was named one of American’s Top Restaurants in the Zagat 2013 guide and Zagat San Francisco Bay Area Guide 2013’s Top 20 Restaurants, has won Best of the Bay in five outlets, and is included in the 2013 San Francisco Louis Vuitton City Guide. Most Recently, ICHI was listed in the San Francisco Chronicles Top 100 restaurants. Listen in, while husband and wife share with us how delivering authentic culture and experiences in your restaurant will make you UNSTOPPABLE! 

Remember: No matter what, never give up! 

Mainer and University of Vermont Graduate, Ryan Turner is Co-Founder and CEO of Unsukay, the parent company for restaurants Muss & Turner’s, Eleanor’s, Local Three and Common Quarter. He and his partners were recognized by the Georgia Restaurant Association as Restaurateurs of the Year in 2011. In 2014, Ryan was named Business Person of the Year by The Metro Atlanta Chamber and the Atlanta Business Chronicle. Additionally, Ryan serves as Board Chairman of the Giving Kitchen, A 501c3 serving those in his restaurant community facing hardship and crisis. In this episode Turner opens our eyes to the power of having a network with deep, meaningful relationships VS having a vast network with shallow relationships. 

Graduate of The Restaurant School at Walnut Hill College, Executive Chef and Consultant, Chef Duffy, is known for coining the term “New Celtic” cuisine and perhaps for his numerous appearances on the wildly popular Spike TV series Bar Rescue. Chef Duffy works with restaurants across the country updating their menus and coaching them through much needed facelifts. His proven success has made him one of the most in demand restaurant consultants across North America and overseas. Hit play,  discover how the art of preparation creates the experience and become Unstoppable! 


Chef Ned Elliott grew up gardening in a home where food played an integral role in daily life. Eager to further his career outside of his schooling at the Culinary Institute of America at Hyde Park, Ned left the CIA to begin staging at various restaurants in New York City. With his craft fine-tuned and reputation built, Ned serves as the Chef/Proprietor of Foreign and Domestic in Austin, TX. Foreign and Domestic has been featured in Zagat, Eater, Food and Wine Magazine, Diners, Drive-Ins and Dive. Most recently, The Austin Chronicle listed Foreign and Domestic as one of Austin’s top 100 restaurants. Additionally Chef Ned Elliot is the founder of Indie Chef Week, which we're all about to learn more about. Now hit play and discover how Chef Elliot became... UNSTOPPABLE!


Direct download: 118_Chef_Ned_Elliot_Says_Market_Your_Restaurant_and_Yourself_as_One.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Rick is the Executive Chef and proprietor of Antique Taco located in Chicago. The menu at Antique Taco reflects his experience from every kitchen he has worked, his experience from Kendall College, and from his travels abroad. What makes his restaurant truly special is that it is the ultimate fusion of everything his loves from meaningful food, to antiques, and working with is incredible wife Ashley. Hit play, listen to Chef Ortiz and become UNSTOPPABLE! 

Direct download: 117-_Chef_Rick_Ortiz_On_Why_Being_a_Servant_Leader_Is_Rewarding.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

New Jersey native and Culinary Institute of America Grad, Chef Thomas McNaughton has what seems to be an all or nothing approach to life. Overseeing Flour and WaterCentral Kitchen and Salumeria, Chef McNaughton has his roots firmly planted in San Francisco, as the Executive Chef for Ne Timeas Restaurant Group.He has been nominated by the James Beard Foundation as “Rising Star Chef of the Year” in 2011, 2012, and 2013. In 2010 Flour and Water was nominated as “Best New Restaurant."Listen and discover how Chef McNaughton became unstoppable!

Chef Jay Murray has been surrounded by food and restaurant culture ever since a young boy. He attended Hampshire College and focused on literature. After doing some food writing, he decided to take some career advice from Rick Bayless and Charlie Trotter to “Be a Chef and go as far as you can with it. Then, decide what you’re going to do.” That’s exactly what he did. Since 1998, Chef Murray has lead Grill 23 & Bar, as their Executive Chef. Under his helm, Town and Country Magazine recognized Grill 23 & Bar as one of “America’s Top Ten Steakhouses,” and by the Boston Globes as being "King". Grill 23 also earned highest honors from the Zagat Survey, including Most popular, Top American, top Steakhouse, and Top Seafood Restaurant. Most recently Grill 23 & Bar was recognized as one of Boston's Top 50 restaurants.

Direct download: 115-_Chef_Jay_Murray_On_Why_Being_Canadian_is_Weakness_AND_Strength_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:46pm EDT

I recently finished reading Michael Ruhlman's The Soul of a Chef: The Journey Toward Perfection and I have to say, its a MUST READ for any restaurant professional seeking success. There is absolutely no questioning why so many of my past guest have suggested this book to you, my listeners. In this book Ruhlman uncovers many of the "secrets" to success in the restaurant industry. Here at restaurant unstoppable we call these secrets "IT FACTORS!" Hit play and discover the it factors three of our industries most successful chefs (Brian Polcyn, Michael Simon, and Thomas Keller) have and the one it factor they all share.


Gaining insight from her years at Beacon Hill Bistro, Craigie on Main and Aquitaine, Alexis continues her philosophy of consistency and unwavering warmth, graciousness and comfort for every patron at the West Bridge in Cambridge, MA. The West Bridge has gained numerous accolades from Boston Magazine, Bon Appetit, Food and Wine, Eater, GQ, the list goes on in on. The West Bridge was recently featured in Boston Magazine’s 2014 Best Neighborhood bar, Kendal Square. In this episode listen to Alexis discuss the power of having clarity with your definite purpose and goals. Also, we'll discuss the importance of doing market research

Bobby Stuckey’s hospitality career as sommelier started in his native Arizona. After getting some experience, he spent the next 8 years perfecting his craft as wine director first at The Little Nell restaurant in Aspen, CO, then at the French laundry. In 2004, after earning his Master Sommelier Diploma, he opened his first restaurant, Frasca Food and Wine in Boulder, CO. In 2008, Stuckey was nominated by the James Beard Foundation as Outstanding Wine and Spirits Professional. In 2010, 2011 and 2012, Frasca Food and Wine was nominated for Outstanding Wine Service, winning the prestigious award in 2013. These are just a few of his accomplishments. In this episode Stuckey really dives into the value of hospitality, how to over come adversity and the power of getting specialist on your team.    

Direct download: 112_Bobby_Stuckey_Turns_Disadvantages_Into_Advantages.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Its been a while since we've done a Talking Tuesday. Today I'm PUMPED to share with you a Bobby Stuckey's TEDx Talk, "Be a Hospitalian". I discovered this TEDx a few weeks back and have been itching to share it with you. Bobby Stuckey is the Co-Owner and Master Sommelier at Frasca Food and Wine located in Boulder, CO.  During this TEDx Stuckey discusses the difference between service and hospitality in a restaurant. Stuckey also dives into why we need to live with more intention to help others. Hospitality doesn't end with your guest; you should be hospitable to your employees, friends, strangers, aunts, and everyone you encounter. He calls this being a "hospitalian."

Direct download: 111_Talking_Tuesday__Bobby_Stuckey22s_TEDx__Be_a_Hospitalian.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Chris Himmel got is start in the hospitality industry doing odd jobs for his families’ restaurants. This early exposure ignited his passion for the restaurant industry and that passion carried him to study at Cornell School of Hospitality Administration in Ithaca, NY. After graduating he mastered his craft working under the tutelage of two industry greats; Danny Meyer of Union Square Hospitality Group and Thomas Keller of the French Laundry. Today, he’s applying what he’s learned as Executive Vice President for Himmel Hospitality Group, which consist of Grill 23 and Bar, Harvest and Post 390. Most recently Himmel was included in the Boston Business Journal’s “40 under 40” and Boston Magazine recognized Grill 23 and Bar as being one of Boston’s Top 50 Restaurants.


David is the Co-Founder of HotSchedulesHotSchedules delivers easy-to-use, online employee scheduling functions that allow you to keep up with availabilities, time-off requests, employee certifications and the daily roster. If you're thinking its about time for your restaurant to evolve by implementing more technology, then HotSchedules is where you need to start. During this episode we'll provide an aerial view so you can better decide if HotSchedules is something thats right for your restaurant. Save time, plus money and improve staff communication and stress with HotSchedules!

Tom Boucher started his hospitality career in 1986 as a server for T-Bones. At the time, he was a graduate student trying to make a little extra cash during his winter break. This could be called the longest winter break ever, as Tom gave up his scholarship and never went back. 29 years later he is the Owner and CEO of Great NH Restaurants, which consist of five T-Bones Great American Eatery locations, two Cactus Jack Locations, and The Copper Door. His Restaurants have won numerous accolades, such as Business NH’s 2013 Hospitality Business of The year award. Most recently the NRA awarded Tom with the 2013 America’s Restaurant Advocates Advocacy Leadership Award for Independent Restaurants. In this episode Tom stresses that we can learn plenty by paying attention to chains with regard to marketing and their use of technology. Also, Tom share 4 tools and services never before mentioned on the show!

Direct download: 108_Tom_Boucher_Stresses_The_Value_In_Learning_From_Chains.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:00pm EDT

Tom has more than 40 years experience as an owner and operator in the service industry. He has participated in the startup of 30 companies, acquisition of three and—in a few cases—the termination of businesses in a broad spectrum of markets. He is best known as the Chief Culture Officer of Chicago-area Tasty Catering, a suburban Corporate Caterer and event planner. Tune in and listen to Tom Walter drive home the value of surrounding yourself with great people and having an exit strategy. 

Chef Gaudet is a graduate of The Cambridge School of Culinary Arts. After graduating he spent 9 years honing his skills at Eleven Madison Park, Jean-Georges and Aquaveet. Upon returning to Boston, he held the Chef De Cuisine title first at Brasserie Jo then at Aquitaine Bistro. Today, he is the Executive Chef/Partner at the well known West Bridge Restaurant in Cambridge MA. In this episode Chef teaches that its NEVER too late to chase your dream and to never stop learning.

Jim has been working in the hospitality industry since the age of 16. He’s done every job from dishwasher to short-order cook to management to national level positions with multi-billion dollar public companies. He’s received a B.A. in Hotel & Restaurant Administration and has an MBA in Technology Management. As a very successful sales builder, Jim has been asked to present for the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation at the NRA Show, Fast Service Conferences and in university classrooms. Additionally, Jim now runs a Hotel & Restaurant program at a local community college. On top of all of this he’s the founder of where they manage social media for indie restaurants day in and day out across the nation.

Direct download: 105_Jim_Traister_Share_The_Truth_On_22Outsourcing22_Social_Media.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Richard’s journey to become a Master Chocolatier began in 1995. In his pursuit he has spanned the globe from Ecole Chocolat in Vancouver to Ecole du Grand Chocolat Valrhona in the Rhone Valley of France, studying and fine tuning his artful craft.  Today, he is running the show at the very successful chocolate cafe called the Dancing Lion. There is no questioning he owns the chocolate scene in Manchester, NH. Ever heard of the Malcolm Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence? No? Well then... you should Take a listen!

Brian is the Founder of, a company dedicated to creating tailor-made websites to fit the unique needs of restaurants. This is Brian’s second appearance on Restaurant Unstoppable. The first time brian was on the show we discussed the 5 essentials to a restaurant website. Today we're cranking it up and going to discuss 9 ways to OPTIMIZE your restaurant website. We'll wrap up the episode by having Brian answer some listener questions. 

Direct download: 103_Brian_Casel_on_9_Ways_to_Optimize_Your_Restaurant_Website.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:50pm EDT

Chef Champe Speidel is a graduate of Johnson and Whales University. After graduating in 2000, he got busy over the next five years honing his craft. In 2005 he and his wife, opened Persimmon; a modern restaurant, serving ingredient and technique-driven American cuisine. 10 years later, his restaurant is being featured in countless magazines, he has become a four-time semifinalist for James Beard Best Chef: Northeast and 2 time semifinalist for James Beards Outstanding Service. Listen to this episode and discover how the power of precision can make you UNSTOPPABLE!

Direct download: 102_Chef_Champ_Speidel_on_The_Power_of_Precision.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Chef Sisca is a graduate of Johnson & Wales and has worked his way through New England, and New York. While in New York he fine-tuned his skills at One If By Land, Two If By Sea, before becoming Sous Chef at the renowned Le Bernardin.  During his tenure at Le Bernardin, they earned a Michelin Three Star award and Four stars from The New York Times. Today, Chef Sisca is the Executive Chef and Partner at Bistro du Midi in Boston, Ma. Just recently Bistro du Midi was recognized as one of Boston’s top 50 restaurants. Listen to this episode and discover why you must first learn to follow before you can lead and why hiring experience isn't always best.

Direct download: 101-_Chef_Robert_Sisca_On_Why_Hiring_Experience_Is_Not_Always_Best.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT