How about a new book?!
One that dishes the dirt on what it’s really like to be in the business.
It’s the story of a successful restaurateur – but told as if a bunch of us were having dinner, sharing experiences over a bottle of wine.
It’s an insider’s perspective, and a must-read for every would-be, up-an-coming restaurateur:
"It’s All About The Guest, Exceeding Expectations in Business and In Life, The Davio’s Way" by Steve DiFillippo
DiFillippo opened his first restaurant at 24. He’s now the CEO of Davio’s Italian Steakhouse and has taken his brand from Boston to Philly and just recently expanded into Atlanta and New York.
Doing it big in the restaurant business is tough cookies.
Only a few names stack up when it comes to the art of expansion. Especially when they’ve spared no expense.
You’ve got Starr, Garces and Vetri – the holy trinity of Philly food.
They’ve created a brand and rarely disappoint. We love them for it, and reward them generously with packed-house patronage.
As is the case at Davio’s. They never fail to impress. And though the man behind the brand may not have a household name in the blog-o-sphere, he’s built himself quite the emerging empire.
Culling years of experience on the floor and behind the line, DiFillippo mixes anecdotes with helpful advice on controlling costs, the truth behind Open Table’s booking fees, finding a good public relations firm and the importance of sound legal advice.
He dishes the dirt on Yelp, on a narcissistic wait staff, on drugs in the kitchen and "why it's not all about the chef," chapter 8.
DiFillippo also pays homage to his “big immigrant family," and the influences that his Italian-American grandmother and Portuguese-American mother had on him at a very young age.
And, of course, there was Julia Child.
Her Pomodoro recipe is listed among others that have inspired him, progressing along with the chapters like a prix-fix menu.
Recipes for, Kobe beef meatballs, basil pesto lobster, and panna cotta are brief, and easy to interpret.
Each chapter is punctuated with “Restaurant Lessons to Live By,” just a few words to the wise, from a man who’s been there, and done that.
Some final takeaways?
1: Treat your people like family.
2: Stay fresh or die.
3: Bad things happen. Deal with it.
Good book and a good buy, signed for less than $30.