Power Case Studies

How to open a restaurant in a hot neighborhood.


1. Enlist the right location hunter.

Charlie Perkins’s commercial real estate firm, the Boston Restaurant Group, peddles restaurant space high-end and low. There’s nary a space in town he hasn’t seen — or sold.

2. Sign up a liquor-license whiz.

You’re going to need booze to make your margins work. As a managing partner at McDermott, Quilty & Miller, Stephen Miller specializes in the hospitality industry, and knows all the ins and outs of alcohol and entertainment licensing in Boston and beyond.

3. Put this guy on your payroll.

To attract the right crowd, you need the right look. Peter Niemitz is the brains behind the eye-catching, immensely inviting interiors at Grill 23, Foundry on Elm, Post 390, and the newly renovated Clio.

4. Get operations up and running, ASAP.

In other words, hire Ed Doyle and KC O’Hara. Their company, RealFood Consulting, helped get Jamaica Plain’s Tres Gatos and Concord’s 80 Thoreau off to a smooth start. They can help tackle everything from kitchen layout to hiring a crack staff of servers and bartenders.

5. Set the stage — and the tables.

Have Jennifer Lucey-Brzoza and Rory Keohane design your logo and menu: The duo behind Oat design studio created ultracool print identities for Island Creek Oyster Bar, Saloon, and Bondir.

6. Make sure your publicist throws a killer opening event.

Launch parties by Jo Swani and Sophie Zunz of the South Boston–based Moxie Agency are always jam-packed and chic. — Donna Garlough

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