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Chris Dickerson shares his story
Clean
April 16, 2019 11:28 AM PDT
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Chris owns the very popular, award-winning Corner Taco in Jacksonville, FL and Burrito Royale in Savannah, GA. He's opening Squirrel's Pizza in Savannah soon. And he's a BADASS! In this episode we cover his back story, why having investors would have forced him to make/do things he wasn't proud of, the importance of great systems, the "dance" you have to do with customers, nudging vs. shoving, the difference in a brand vs. a label, never apologizing for who you are, respect over money, how he defines success, and much more. This dude is on his game! Enjoy...
Veteran owner Fran Scibelli shares her story
Clean
March 28, 2019 10:53 AM PDT
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Fran has owned iconic Fran's Filling Station in Charlotte, NC for ten years, but she's been an owner off and on since 1994. Fran and her team's mission is to fill up her guests bodies and spirits, hence the restaurant name. We talked about a wide range of topics, from why she only wants one location, to managing people being an ongoing work-in-progress, to learning from her brother about coaching, to why a guest comment helped her realize she needed to remodel, to nailing the basics every day, to trying to touch every table, to paying close attention to OpenTable feedback, to her constant search for "delicious", to her very personal focus on finding a kidney due to her kidney disease, which she chose to make public recently. Fran is an absolutely amazing lady, personally and professionally. I have so much respect for her. This is a must-listen episode. Enjoy...
Vince Giancarlo of Zeppelin shares his story
Clean
March 27, 2019 11:41 AM PDT
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Vince is the executive chef of Zeppelin in Charlotte, NC. This place has quickly developed a great reputation and when you listen to Vince you'll understand why. Driven, creative, thoughtful, sharp, and focused, Vince shares the ethos of Zeppelin, the hurdles of the first year of a restaurant, chefs thriving under pressure of having other great chefs around, why he focuses on collaboration vs. competition and why chefs should rally around each other, and more. This is a quick, awesome 15-minute conversation. Enjoy...
Sean O'Neill from Chronic Tacos shares his story
Explicit
March 25, 2019 10:55 AM PDT
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Sean owns three Chronic Tacos locations in N.C. and is planning more. He had a short run in hospitality before diving into this opportunity, but he went after it full speed ahead and is having lots of success. There's a 100% chance you'll learn something meaningful from Sean and be inspired. And you'll laugh a few times as well! He is high energy, sharp, confident, fun to hang out with, and a master of Instagram with over 14,000 followers (he shares his secret sauce during the interview). I really enjoyed learning from a guy who invested into somebody else's idea but has taking ownership of making sure it's very successful in his territory. Sean's awesome, enjoy...
Wooden Robot GM Zena Irving shares her story
Clean
March 20, 2019 04:50 AM PDT
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Zena is awesome. She has been in hospitality for 16 years, and grew up with a family background at Disney. She's been at the very popular Wooden Robot Brewery in Charlotte, NC since day one, four years ago. Owners Dan and Josh needed somebody with hospitality experience when they started, an Zena stepped up and has clearly done a tremendous job. We talked about the team's core values, how they stay on their game with such high volume (they've already brewed over 600 batches), the importance of effective and constant communication, their philosophy of working with a shared fate, working out of humility and teachability, making things look easy when they aren't, why Wooden Robot doesn't have high turnover, the collaborative nature of the beer community, and getting ready for their second location that's opening this May. Zena is sharp, focused, authentic, humble, and definitely one her game. Enjoy...
The amazing Cheetie Kumar joins the podcast
Clean
March 14, 2019 03:16 PM PDT
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3-time James Beard award nominee (2017, 2081, 2019) Cheetie Kumar, chef/owner of Garland, Neptune's Parlour, and Kings in Raleigh, NC was recently profiled in the New York Times and was named as one of the 25 Southerners of the Year by Southern Living Magazine in 2018. She's as humble as she is brilliant at her craft, and was so kind to sit down with us. We talked about everything from "imposter syndrome" to therapy to southern food culture. A fun, thoughtful, highly educational conversation with an inspiring lady who we admire greatly. Enjoy...
Prohibition's Ray Burns & Alexa Pavloski share their stories
Clean
March 04, 2019 11:37 AM PST
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We were lucky to have a chance to sit down with both Ray Burns (co-owner) and Alexa Pavloski (Events Director) to learn the story of Prohibition, which has very successful, popular locations in Charleston, SC and Savannah, GA. We talked about everything from the New York bar scene (where Ray got his start), the many costs of running a bar, the importance of empowering your staff, why Alexa applied for a job at Prohibition the day after she first visited as a customer, how Alexa was able to manage all of the events at Prohibition remotely from Australia for three months recently, the many, many hats an owner wears, Ray and Alexa playing "good cop/bad cop" during employment interviews, and much more. Ray and Alexa and the team at Prohibition have found a great balance of hard work and a fun culture, and it was an honor to have the chance to interview them. Enjoy...
Bohemian Bull owner Chad Biel shares his story
Clean
February 28, 2019 12:34 PM PST
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Like so many successful restaurant owners, Chad Biel grew up cooking and started working in restaurants at age 16 as a dishwasher. Since then he's had years of corporate experience with Carrabba's and Chick-fil-A where he learned about having great systems and organization, but also learned he wanted to be a part of something with less bureaucracy. He had been the GM at Bohemian Bull Tavern & Beer Garden in Charleston, SC for a few years when he purchased the business last year. We talked about his focus on bar food done well (food made from scratch, fresh, local ingredients, etc.), his focus on his community and monthly fund raising events, his efforts to reduce his and his managers' hours slightly to enable more focused time while at work, trying to determine the right amount of growth to avoid large company bureaucracy, and the four things you need to get right to make a restaurant work.
The Story of Vicious Biscuit
Clean
February 27, 2019 10:52 AM PST
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Josh Lambert co-owns Vicious Biscuit, which has been extremely successful right out of the gate in Mt. Pleasant, S.C. and has very aggressive growth plans. We had a great interview with Josh, and discussed everything from the initial idea, research, planning, timing, biscuits being the new burgers in the U.S., farm-to-table fresh products, employees coming first, leading by example, social media/PR, and making sure every customer leaves with a smile. Tons to learn from Josh, we could have talked for another couple of hours! Enjoy...
"I fell in love with food and service and never looked back"
Clean
February 26, 2019 10:21 AM PST
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Nick Barr, chef and kitchen manager at Buxton Hall Barbecue in Asheville, NC, is a thoughtful, passionate person who cares deeply about hospitality. He's been in the industry since he started working at age 15, and has a great story to tell of learning about himself and what matters to him while working at a large chain for a decade, and how he came to appreciate the importance of local ingredients and the intention and care that goes into serving food that has a greater purpose than profit. He cares deeply about what he puts on his customers' plates, where it came from, how it was prepared, and every aspect of the experience Buxton Hall guests have each time they walk into the door. Nick is a deep thinker who truly cares about his craft. It's inspiring to hear him share his story and his vision for what could one day happen with the local food movement. Enjoy...

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