The Garnish: a Podcast for Restaurant People

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Eric Cacciatore Garnish

Season 2, Episode 9: Eric Cacciatore of Restaurant Unstoppable

For this episode, we sat down with Eric Cacciatore, host of Restaurant Unstoppable. He grew up in his parents’ restaurant, worked in a few more, and then spent some time as a commercial pilot and a winemaker’s assistant. Since 2014, he’s produced over 600 episodes of Restaurant Unstoppable. He aims to find out what makes a restaurant - and a restaurateur - successful. He’s interviewed over 600 restaurant professionals, and he’s learned a thing or two about the business.

In this interview, we discuss the power of relationships in the restaurant industry, the impact of trends like food halls and delivery, the importance of taking care of employees first, and much more. 

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Funding Garnish Graphic

Season 2, Episode 8: Joanne Chang, Charles Bililies, and Emiliana Puyana on Funding a Restaurant

When it comes to funding a restaurant, there are many, many different ways to go about procuring capital. In this episode of The Garnish, we spoke with Joanne Chang – whose bakery, Flour, has expanded to eight locations across Boston – and Charles Bililies – CEO of Souvla, a four-location Greek-American restaurant in San Francisco – about how they gained funding for their now very successful restaurants. 

We also spoke with Emiliana Puyana, a program manager at La Cocina, a culinary business incubator that helps women and immigrants start businesses through mentorship, training, connections to funding, and subsidized use of a commercial kitchen. She told us about alternative paths to funding that are available to just about anyone.  

For more about funding a restaurant, check out our accompanying blog post.

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Parenthood Garnish Graphic

Season 2, Episode 7: Parenthood in Restaurants

This time on The Garnish we’ve got an episode about being a parent in the restaurant industry. In this episode, three moms and two dads from all over the restaurant industry give their perspectives on one of the greatest challenges to modern work-life balance: restaurant work and parenthood. 

We chatted about maternity leave (or lack thereof), scheduling, childcare, pumping at work, camaraderie among industry parents, missing milestones, accommodating workplaces, kids in the kitchen, and more.

For more about parenthood in restaurant, check out our accompanying blog post.

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Ryan Egozi Garnish Graphic

Season 2, Episode 6: Ryan Egozi of SuViche Restaurant Group on Keeping Employees and Customers Happy

Today we’ve got an interview with Ryan Egozi, director of operations of SuViche Hospitality Group in Miami, FL. We discuss the many ways that SuViche keeps staff turnover low, how they turn a negative customer experience into a great one, how they’re trying to bridge the front and back of house divide, and more.

Learn more about Ryan in our accompanying blog post.

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Justin Alpert Garnish Graphic

Season 2, Episode 5: Justin Alpert on Accessibility and Hospitality

Justin Alpert is a restaurant architect who is passionate about making restaurants more accessible to all customers. His twin brother, and frequent dining companion, is blind, so Alpert has learned all about the design elements that make or break the experience of a guest with a disability. 

We cover the difference between designing a restaurant to code and designing a restaurant that's welcoming and hospitable for all your guests, what restaurateurs should consider when looking at a new (or upcycled) space for a restaurant, simple ways that any restaurateur with any budget can help improve the dining experience for customers with disabilities, and how to train waitstaff to enhance the experience of guests with disabilities.

For more on accessibility in restaurants, check out our accompanying blog post

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Tipping Garnish Graphic

Season 2, Episode 4: Gratuity-Free Restaurants

On two opposite corners of the US, two neighborhood restaurants are thriving on a gratuity-free, profit-sharing model. In this episode, we’ll hear all about what it’s like to work at Juliet, in Somerville, MA, and at barcito, in Los Angeles. We’ll dive into the challenges of implementing this model, as well as the joys of gratuity-free work, including stable income and benefits like health insurance, the motivation of profit-sharing, and a smaller front and back of house divide.

For more on going tip-free, check out our accompanying blog post

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Addiction Garnish Graphic

Season 2, Episode 3: Addiction in Restaurants

Content warning: This episode contains discussions about addiction, substance use disorders, alcoholism, and drug use.

While substance use disorders affect people in every line of work, they are particularly prevalent in the restaurant world.

We spoke with three individuals who each have different experiences with addiction in the restaurant industry. During these conversations, we learned about the barriers and stigmatization restaurant workers face when trying to get treatment and live a sober lifestyle. 

To learn more about what you can do to create a culture of support in your restaurant, read more in our accompanying blog post here

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Erin Wade Garnish Graphic

Season 2, Episode 2: Erin Wade of Homeroom on Inclusivity and Dealing with Harassment

Content warning: This post contains discussions of sexual harassment.

It wasn’t enough for Erin Wade to open a restaurant that just served world-class mac and cheese. She also wanted Homeroom to be a safe, enjoyable place to work for people from all walks of life. In this episode, we discuss how Homeroom hires for true diversity, and how she empowered her staff to come up with an ingenious way to combat harassment.

For more on Erin and Homeroom, read our accompanying blog post here.

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Danny Meyer Garnish Graphic

Season 2, Episode 1: Danny Meyer on Hospitality and the Value of Emotional Intelligence in Restaurants

Danny Meyer is pretty well-known in the restaurant industry. You might know him as the man who founded Shake Shack. Maybe you know him from Union Square Cafe, which he opened at 27 years old, or from Gramercy Tavern. Maybe you’ve been to one of the 18 restaurants that are part of Union Square Hospitality Group.

What you might not know about Danny Meyer, though, is that he hires for empathy. “As good as our food was...what we really knew was that the way we were making people feel was even more powerful than what we were putting on the plate and in the glass,” said Meyer. “That’s hospitality.” It’s this core belief that has garnered his restaurants a fiercely loyal following.

Read more about Danny Meyer's hospitality philosophy here

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