Newbe question

Discussion in 'New User Introductions' started by brewdude, Feb 12, 2017.

  1. brewdude

    brewdude

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    I'm a brewmaster and opening a brewery with partners that will include a restaurant. It was supposed to be a small restaurant. It has now morphed into a 150 seat restaurant. Neither I nor my partner have any restaurant experience. I'm scared to sh*t. Could someone please tell me the average number of employees a restaurant this size requires? Front and back of house, please. Casual dinning, open from 10am - 2am.I plan to use the info gathered here to try and knock some sence into my partners fat head. I'm of the obvious mindset to hire someone with experiance, start with a small restaurant component, simple menu, and see how things go whils focusing on getting the beer out to the market place, kegs/bottles etc. Lord help me....Please and thank-you very much.
     
  2. jimyra

    jimyra

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    welcome to cheftalk.  Make sure you have seven figure cash to open.  A good wait staff can handle 5 to seven tables.  I would plan on ten to fifteen employees at busy times.
     
  3. chefwriter

    chefwriter

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    A few more details will get you better answers.

    How has it morphed into a 150 seat restaurant? You mean the plans you are making? You don't have an actual building yet, correct? 

    How many partners do you have? You started with "partners" plural, then say your partner. Any "silent" partners?

    With no experience, how did the project grow into 150 seats? 

    Brewery products include in house sales as well as wholesale accounts? If deliveries, any foreseeable investment in delivery trucks and drivers? Bottling for others as well as your own production? 

    How many calculations have you done for a brewery with restaurant? Cost for opening the brewery (equipment and employees), then cost for the restaurant, (equipment, employees, food)  then both together, projected construction/renovation time, projected revenue from average check? Any calculations done at all so far? 

    You are the brewmaster, what does or will your partner do? 

    Average number of employees would depend on menu and service style as well as number of seats. You can have bar only finger foods like mozzarella sticks, etc, or burgers and sandwiches or steaks and seafood. Gastropub or roadhouse or...
     
  4. brewdude

    brewdude

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    Many thanks, Jimyra and Chefwriter,

    I at least have an idea of staffing requirements for wait staff now, but belive back of house (kitchen) still needs to be taken into account.

    I'm sure an accurate assesment of both will be influenced by what's on the menu (let's aim for mid range), number of shifts (assume lunch and dinner, open from 11am - 2am, so 15hrs) and how busy those times are, which I expect will vary due to time of day and the day of week, not to mention ambiance of location and quality/price of menu and service.

    However, all im trying to do at this point is get an idea of average staffing requirements,for an average 150 seat restaurant, with an average menu.

    I realize there is more to opening and running a restaurant than this, way more.

    Thing is, I don't want to do this, I/we had agreed on a small restaurant/bar component to augment the brewery and satisfy local laws (bar must serve food), and will do everything in my power to prevent what I perceive as a catastrophic mistake.

    Chefwriter, we have signed a 10yr lease for a 1,500 Sq ft, 2 story (including basement) red brick building that skirts the city's night spot area at a very reasonable rate.

    This includes 6 months free rent (just utilities) for renos, and a sliding scale rent structure. I have one partner, and investors whom I consider partners as well.

    This morphed from 25-30 seats into 150 seater overnight. My partner started talking with chefs, engineers, architects, while I was taking care of brewery plans and drops the news.

    My partner is The Founder, whereas I'm co-founder.

    He's the financial guy, raised 1.7M in debt and investor equity.

    His family has secured the debt with land they own. I will not be putting any cash in, my contribution is sweat equity (3.5 yrs and counting)related to the brewery side.

    I'm trained at one of the two best brew Schools in the world, located in Munich, Germany. Worked as brewmaster for the royal family of Bavaria, bla bla bla. I know my stuff. Opened another very successful brewery in the same city as this will be.

    Brewery includes on site sales (most profitable), take out sales, and we will sell kegs/bottles to local restaurant/bars and liquor stores.No plans to bottle for other companies.

    Yes we have plans for delivery truck.

    Brewery side is well documented in cost and sales projections. Where the money for all the kitchen equipment plus tables, chairs etc will come from I don't know, this has blindsided me.

    Gastro pub, in house brined pastrami, smoked meats, sausages, burgers, etc is what I/we envisioned before this nonsense.

    Partner is 26yrs old, me 55. Neither of us have restaurant experience.

    Partner wants to do every thing, hire, fire, control spending, marketing, books (with accountant), entertainment, promo. A bit of a control freak, understatement. However, his family farm is at stake.

    I gotta knock some sence into him. Hoping to present facts and figures so he realizes the enormous risk and bring back to earth.

    My apologies, I'm rushed and have much to do.

    Thank-you both for your time, interest, and advice.

    Sincerely,

    Brewdude, with an anchor around my neck :-/
     
  5. jimyra

    jimyra

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    IMO you have a disaster ready to happen.  The statistics tell us that a restaurant  has a better than fifty percent chance of failing in the first year and that includes those with experience.   In my family there was an expression "don't bet the farm on it."
     
  6. chefwriter

    chefwriter

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    This is kind of a jumble of an answer but I hope you get the idea.

         I may be missing something. 1500 square feet won't fit a 150 seat restaurant and brewery. Is the partner just talking so far or does he have actual plans? Because building and occupancy codes will require a certain number of square feet per customer. 

         At any rate, thanks for the explanation so far.  Based on that, I think you'd be best off relaxing a bit. I understand your realistic fear based on the lack of experience. Good self awareness there. But fearing the unknown isn't the same as facing challenges. 

    Your partner and the others are risking the money. You're the brewery guy so you can focus on the brewery side of things. Just the brewery part. Overall, if he wants to do the restaurant, let him.

         Much of the situation depends on the partner's personality. Control freak but listens to advice? Control freak but doesn't listen? Generally smart with good ideas or smart but out of his mind? 

    You mention he will work with an accountant. So I'm going to go with the idea that he isn't completely an egotistical jackass. Just a bit young and enthusiastic. 

          Just keep an eye on progress. As you already plan to do, present facts and figures, not fear. Be like Spock. Don't panic. Show calm, level headed guidance. If there is an area of the project you don't understand, ask him to explain. Building codes, equipment costs, costs per square foot, legal requirements of all kinds, etc. should constrain things automatically. Be a good listener so he feels comfortable coming to you with issues. Keeping good communication lines open with him will go a long way.

         I'll go a little out on a limb and throw in a bit of street psychology in that you and I are the same age. I was much like your partner at 26, raring to go and willing to die to get there. Now I'm more cautious. I suspect you are too. Don't let that stop you or the project. 

    Fwiw, there is a brewpub here that sounds much like your project. Over 100 seat restaurant and brewery. Been around for over twenty years and they do very well. 
     
  7. millionsknives

    millionsknives

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    Last edited: Feb 13, 2017
  8. brewdude

    brewdude

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    My thanks, again, to both of you.

    One fact I must clear up before I leave for work. The building is 5,000 Sq ft, not 1,500.

    Will post again later today.

    Till then...
     
  9. cheflayne

    cheflayne

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    150 seat restaurant usually occupies between 3,000 - 4,000 sq ft. Also don't forget parking, roughly about 3x restaurant sq footage.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2017
  10. brewdude

    brewdude

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    WAIT......!!!PLEASE Read!!!

    BUILDING IS 5,000 SQ FT, NOT 1,500....

    THAT WAS A MISPRINT
     
  11. cheflayne

    cheflayne

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    I read the 5,000 before I replied. I don't know brewery biz at all. Do know restaurant side. My answer was directed at that, between 3,000 - 4,000 for a 150 seat restaurant, which will leave you between 2,000 - 1,000 for a brewery. Is that enough room, because I ain't got a clue?
     
  12. danib

    danib

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    I really like the balance of replies you got : ) That's pretty much how you're feeling, and it's all real. STOP! GO! PANIC! chill.....

    I'm with chefwriter: breathe! I'm new here, but not new to the blender of planning and discerning, and would love to hear more.