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ImpromptuBoy
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Hi Everyone.
I was thinking of opening up my own magic theme restaurant when I grow up since I want to be a restaurant manager. I want to entertain the patrons and have a few laughs with customers and you know, have a great time.
What do I do to become a restaurant manager and how do I open my own restaurant?
Have you ever thought of doing so?
All the best,

Michael
Peter Marucci
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Impromptu,
As a former restaurant owner, I can speak with some authority on this.

Don't even consider it!

Well, not unless you are prepared to work 18 hours a day, seven days a week. That's what my wife and I ended up doing, and we were only open five days a week, from noon to 9 p.m. and had a staff of more than a dozen.

Mind you, the place was a roaring success from Day One. But it was entirely due to our efforts -- our HARD efforts -- in a very labor-intensive business.

Oh, sure, it's possible to do it "on the easy" and ignore the little touches, like fresh flowers on the tables. After all, nobody is going to come back again and again just because of the fresh flowers.

That's true, but if the flowers are just one of a hundred little touches like that, it all build up, like individual snowflakes making drifts that can halt traffic.

That worked for us and we ended up with the place fully reserved every Friday and Saturday night by regulars.

And don't forget, you are going to have to pay all your taxes, salaries, supplies, and so on, out of the income from the restaurant. If there's anything left, you get a little (most of it goes for maintenance and capital improvements) but it still won't be anything near what you would make as an employee somewhere else. After all, you have to pay for your own benefits (medical and dental), your own pension plan, those of your family, PLUS those of your employees!

You won't make any real money until you sell it (then you will but it probably won't matter by then!).

As for performing, I did that for a couple of years. But remember, the real reason people come to your place is for the food. Then the drink. Then the conversation. Away down the list is YOU and YOUR performance of magic. And some people don't want to see it at all!

Bottom line: Don't do it. But, if you really want to perform in a restaurant, then get a job doing that and DON'T open your own restaurant (unless you have a death wish! LOL!).
ImpromptuBoy
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Thank you for the comments Peter!
What was the name of your restaurant and where is it located? I live near Mississauga.
Magicmaven
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A lot of work...

a lot of work....

a lot of work...


A LOT OF WORK...
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Peter Marucci
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Magicmaven "sums it up" very well.

And Impromptu Boy, our restaurant was right here in Fergus, called the Italian Kitchen Café (it was an Italian restaurant -- surprise!) We ran it for about two years, with my wife supervising the kitchen/food end and me in charge of the front of the house.
It was there that I performed table magic (having had considerable experience from previous gigs in other people's restaurants).
The restaurant is now the Old Copper Kettle English pub, right on the main street of Fergus (St. Andrew St.)
n3cromanc3r
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Do some research on the profit margin of a restaurant, that will tell you it's not a good idea. I have not owned a restaurant but have owned my own buisinesses, many of the pitfalls described above fall into most buisnesses you own. VERY long hours, money poured back into the buisness to keep it afloat or pay for taxes, benefits etc.. it's a daunting task. That's not to say there are not some very good restaurants out there that make money, but for every one of those, there are a 100 just struggling to make ends meet.
Peter Marucci
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N3cromanc3er writes: "That's not to say there are not some very good restaurants out there that make money, but for every one of those, there are a 100 just struggling to make ends meet."

And that is very, VERY true!

And, to take it a step further, of that 100, at least 80 will fold (although they might be very good).
Kozmo
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Have you ever worked tables in a restaurant?...take a look around at the pace that everyone in that restaurant is working because that's what you will be doing....working your ass off....no one works harder than restaurant workers
koz
mike gallo
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So far everyone is telling you not to do it. Perhaps they are right. But if I were you, and I seriously wanted to own my own place, first thing I would do is take courses in food and beverage administration. Secondly, I would work several restaurants just to get a "feel" for the business. Then of course, you will need capital for finances (cash in reserve) for times when you can't make payroll or for times when you need emergency repairs in the kitchen. Then of course you need to be selective about the hired help, friendly and outgoing wait staff, a creative chef with excellent culinary skills, bartenders who aren’t going to rob you blind. Then most important, you need to find someone you can trust to run the place while you are not there (I don't think there is such a person). Come to think of it. These guys are right. DON'T DO IT!

Mike
Michael Baker
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Been there, done that. Before I went full-time magic, my Dad and I co-owned a restaurant. I ran the back end, he ran the front end. We had one of the top places in town. Make money? barely. Work hard? Not unless you consider hard work being onsite by 6:30-7:00 am to meet the produce deliveries, open up, coordinate the prep staff for the day, make sure all your staff plans to be there that day, write up the daily specials menus, make a liquor run, make a special run for any delivery items that are unavailable through usual sources, make sure the banks are counted, bars are stocked, tables are set, back-up serviceware is ready, food is being prepped, tea & coffee are made, ice machine hasn't conked out during the night, take reservations, scramble to cover the setup duties of a waiter who's car won't start, fire an employee for drugs, get an application for someone, meet with a vendor, meet with an anal-retentive mother of a bride who is planning a wedding reception, make sure things are ready for that catering job tomorrow, greet the first customers of the day at 11:00 am, realize that you only have 14 hours to go until the bar finally closes at night, and clean up really starts. You'll be operating on a profit margin of generally less than 5%, watching your kid's college tuition hit the floor when a waiter drops a tray or go up in flames because of a lazy cook... all this in a market where the mortality rate of the business is higher than that of a fire ant hill when I hit it with my lawnmower. You will, in no uncertain terms, marry the restaurant.

But, you'll eat good. Smile

~michael
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Mike Walton
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If you're serious about considering starting a restaurant, then start waiting tables. I worked as a server at a real nice, high end food brew pub/restaurant in Cleveland and met another server who was changing jobs every 18 months to learn about food, then wine, etc.

He worked at an old place named Sammies in the flats to learn about fish (high end fish), then switched to learn about a certain style of food, then worked at this brew pub to learn something else, etc. etc. His goal was to eventually open a restaurant but he was busy learning the business from the front lines, which is a great place to test the waters and for you, see if you like the pace and the feel. You may love it or, you may decide to do something else. Either way, the tips are great once you get into a good place and it's good to know you can always fall back on that in any situation.
Magicmaven
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I think the most important thing you should do is, figure out how to schedule in a meditation and relaxation period in the day. Smile
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calexa
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Quote:
On 2005-05-14 17:25, Michael Baker wrote:
Been there, done that. Before I went full-time magic, my Dad and I co-owned a restaurant. I ran the back end, he ran the front end. We had one of the top places in town. Make money? barely. Work hard? Not unless you consider hard work being onsite by 6:30-7:00 am to meet the produce deliveries, open up, coordinate the prep staff for the day, make sure all your staff plans to be there that day, write up the daily specials menus, make a liquor run, make a special run for any delivery items that are unavailable through usual sources, make sure the banks are counted, bars are stocked, tables are set, back-up serviceware is ready, food is being prepped, tea & coffee are made, ice machine hasn't conked out during the night, take reservations, scramble to cover the setup duties of a waiter who's car won't start, fire an employee for drugs, get an application for someone, meet with a vendor, meet with an anal-retentive mother of a bride who is planning a wedding reception, make sure things are ready for that catering job tomorrow, greet the first customers of the day at 11:00 am, realize that you only have 14 hours to go until the bar finally closes at night, and clean up really starts. You'll be operating on a profit margin of generally less than 5%, watching your kid's college tuition hit the floor when a waiter drops a tray or go up in flames because of a lazy cook... all this in a market where the mortality rate of the business is higher than that of a fire ant hill when I hit it with my lawnmower. You will, in no uncertain terms, marry the restaurant.

But, you'll eat good. Smile

~michael

Oh my God!

Magixx
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Peter Marucci
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Magixx writes: "Oh my God!"

. . . And that's just the "upside" of it! <G>
Michael Baker
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Quote:
On 2005-05-15 06:38, Peter Marucci wrote:
Magixx writes: "Oh my god!"

. . . And that's just the "upside" of it! <G>



Ha-ha!!! No kidding!!! That's just a tiny part of an average day. Just wait until the health inspector decides to show up an hour into the rush!!!

Just wait until the kitchen hood decides to flame up and the dry chemical extinguisher blows, and in a nano-second, everything that oxygen can touch is covered with white powder.

Just wait until some customer lets a stray cat in the front door.

Just wait until a drunk goes berzerk, and smashes half of everything.

Just wait until two cars collide in your parking lot.

Want more???

Stick to magic. By comparison, it'll seem like income undiluted by labor.

~michael
~michael baker
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dherberg
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Yep,

I guess that hire yourself to a restaurant gives more profit.

I own a restaurant, and I want to entertain a bit. That's why I bought a whole lot of magic.

One problem, I work so hard/much in the restaurant that I don't find the time to practice.

I really don't want to discourage people going into the restaurant business, but take it slow and start little. As soon as you need a lot of staff you'll get the worries Smile


Coen
Rupert Bair
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Get a magic themed bar, no food!
Matt
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I can’t say you guys are not telling the truth since some of you owned restaurants and it is “hard work”. However, what you guys are saying is one thing and of course there is another thing out there, I know a man who started with one family style restaurant and now has ten, he doesn't even go to all everyday, he has made money that his grand children can live all their live without having to work. AND of course he has great live, this is due to the success, my point is, there is a chance of success and making really good money from food and drink, hey become a chef first and go for it.
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ImpromptuBoy
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Quote:
On 2005-05-15 12:56, magic_matt wrote:
Get a magic themed bar, no food!
Matt


COOL! But I think there should be a little food at least.
Rupert Bair
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I work in a magic themed resturant in Spain, and they only do the one meal.

Matt
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