I have yet to meet anyone who didn’t hanker for the chance to own a restaurant. The fascination, frenzy, and mere enthusiasm of being able to house hundreds of guests simultaneously enjoying your culinary creations has teased the most disciplined businessman into the point of proprietorship. Often a short year or two later the new owner wakes up from the dream and realizes that they have wandered into an area where nobody should tread without sufficient experience, knowledge, financing or all of the above.
Yet, for those who have thrown their hats into the ring, only to follow that up with a towel some time later, the enjoyment of ownership always lingers with the crowd of friends – many of whom where once or still are, restaurant owners.
I continue to socialize with friends made along the way while I was building my restaurant empire. No, it wasn’t some big conglomerate. It was a shimmering spotlight on the well lit highway of culinary concepts that had a decade-long run. By many standards that is incredible accomplishment. Yet, the knowledge gained and the people entertained will last forever, as it usually does with any restaurant owner and that is the greatest reward.
A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of joining 100 or so people at a friend’s home in
They had just purchased a small piece of property in
Remodeling the property they completely renovated the corner store, christened it Nonna’s and also repositioned the cottages for rentals. The property shines, today, and many of their personal touches still glitter, even though they made the decision a year ago to lease the facility and cottages to Sondra Bernstein of Girl and the Fig, fame.
On the evening of their party, one could see why they wanted to venture into unfamiliar territory. The outside porches overlooking the hills of
As I sat gazing out at the magnificent view overlooking the estate, I couldn’t help but think how lucky all of us in the restaurant business are. The language, no matter how it sounds or is spoken, is based on the love of food, entertainment and good times. And no matter what voice it’s spoken in, it always makes me thankful that I can say I have restaurateurs as friends.
It’s an asset of the business that nobody can change.