Friday, October 3, 2008

30,000 feet and climbing

I’m on a plane heading to LA. In the spirit of full disclosure, something I hope rings through in this blog,
I’m on my way to speak to a company about running a new restaurant. I guess it’s not really full disclosure, as I am not going to mention the names behind it, but you get the point.

This is my 4th trip to LA for such a purpose. I find this interesting, in that it seems to be a hot city in the culinary market presently. I’m fielding offers and opportunities from other places as well, but LA seems to be calling much more frequently. We will see how it goes...

Last night I dreamed about FLIP, my new burger project opening in Atlanta in a few weeks.
It seems odd, not dreaming about hamburgers, although that is odd perhaps, but odd that this is in essence my simplest culinary endeavor, but the one I am most concerned and serious about.

It symbolizes a few career obstacles.

1. Overcoming the theory of a concept restaurant. It is, it’s a burger place. But I need to drive it with a chef's passion. It will be the only way to truly separate itself in the burger market. I’ve been to too many burger spots in preparing for FLIP, and none, even the ones with real chefs behind them, deliver a "chef driven" experience. Some are just "phoning it in."

2. Excelling in business operations. This thing needs to be tight, when you are talking about 200 units in the future, it must be tight. My staff has no idea how this opening could impact their lives. I do.

3. Not caring about critics ( and I use this title loosely). For as many people who are extremely excited about the opening of FLIP, there are a very small, passionate group of haters who also can’t wait. I’ll be ready for you.

So we are in the stretch run for FLIP, and I’m looking forward to being in that kitchen and experiencing what I think will be a very busy opening. Look for a creative and fun menu, at a low price point, with a modern design.

Also, please reserve a seat or two for my guest appearance cooking two courses at Shaun’s in Inman Park next Wednesday. Shaun Doty has long been a chef I have respected in Atlanta and I’m honored that he asked me to participate in his anniversary dinner.

5 comments:

janesaintclaire said...

Richard,

Is it possible to get a date for when Flip is opening? I'm actually heading to Atlanta soon and I'd love to try it out. Thanks!

Richard Blais said...

Hey Jane

Flip is slated for early November. We are hoping to hit that target but I will definitely post a date as we get closer! Thanks for the support!

Jeny said...

i never got to eat at Home and now you're opening a burger place! this would be fabulous for me if i hadn't recently turned vegetarian. story of my life! i might cheat to get to eat your food though. :)

bill said...

Here's two reservations for Shaun's (thru Opentable). I've wanted to eat there, so thanks for the excuse. Too bad we couldn't pair this up with "Cannibal: The Musical" around the corner at Dad's Garage. But, then, our babysitter isn't available on weekends. Yea Wednesdays!

Richard Blais said...

Bill- make sure to say hello!