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How to start a restaurant

There’s a huge difference between cooking a restaurant-quality meal from the comfort of your own kitchen and serving meal after meal, night after night to people who are paying for the privilege of eating it. But there are few areas of the restaurant business that can’t be learned with the right balance of passion and dedication.

The resources on this page take you through what it takes to start a restaurant, all the way from the seed of an idea through to serving the first dish.

Defining a Restaurant Concept

How to confirm that your idea for a new restaurant is a need shared by potential customers.

Restaurant Branding

Consistency is important, from your restaurant name to the font, color scheme, website, décor, and uniform.

Writing a Menu

Know your profit margins and the budget of your average customer, then craft a menu that customers love at a cost that suits you.

Restaurant Accounting

When you start a restaurant, as with any startup, there’s a right time to bootstrap and a right way to spend your budget.

Legal Requirements

Every state has its own regulations and it’s your responsibility to adhere to both local and national standards.

Choosing a Location

Do you go for a place full of quirky character, or one that’s going to make day-to-day operations easy?

Layout and Design

You have to use a mix of art and science to get the most out of your space, both inside and out.

Hiring Staff

A service-oriented, committed staff can be the linchpin to your success. Learn how to attract and retain top talent.

Hiring a Chef

The head chef can make or break a new restaurant, so finding (and keeping) the right one is essential.

Selecting Suppliers

Work with people who match both your brand values and your personality, at every point in the supply chain.

Long-Term Planning

There’s no such thing as a plateau in the restaurant business — you’re either growing or in decline.

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