Restaurant Success by the Numbers: A Money-Guy's Guide to Opening the Next New Hot Spot

This nonfiction (320 pages) was published in July of 2014 by Ten Speed Press. The book takes you to the backoffice of a restaurant. David read Restaurant Success by the Numbers and loved it; it wouldn't be on our site if he didn't recommend it.

Restaurant Success by the Numbers

A Money-Guy's Guide to Opening the Next New Hot Spot

Roger Fields

Every restaurant — from a cupcake food truck to a 5-star celebrity-chef experience — is a complex system that most of us take for granted. In this comprehensive and compelling book, you’ll get a behind-the-scenes peek at how restaurants really work.

The dream of opening a restaurant is one of the most popular and one of the scariest. Most restaurants fail, but according to author Roger Fields — a self-described ‘money guy’ — the things that turn customers into regulars are not a mystery. He serves up the information restaurant owners need to develop their concept, write their menus, find the right location and space, design the kitchen, manage inventory, and more.

In addition to practical considerations, this book is packed with fascinating facts about the restaurant business:

  • Restaurants take in 47-percent of all money spent on food in the United States.
  • Square and rectangular tables turn over customers faster than round tables.
  • In New York City, using a clean tablecloth and napkin with every table adds $1.10 to the cost of every meal sold. In 2003, the annual laundry bill at one of the city’s most prestigious restaurants was $150,000.

This accessible book also includes an inside look at how restaurants set prices, the ways they take advantage of popular trends, and what they look for when hiring new employees. If you’ve ever thought you might like to open a café, bar, bistro, or diner, this book is a detailed way to vet your daydream and take a tasty bite of reality.

Never doubt this old saw for a minute: ‘It is more fun to eat in a bar than to drink in a restaurant.’ — Roger Fields

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