Thomas Shackelford's Blog (9)

Do you and your people know how to properly serve alcohol?

I'm not talking about proper wine presentation. I'm talking about knowing when to have your guests to say when. Do your people know what to do if there guest has been overserved? Do you know what to do? What if someone comes in your establishment drunk already and you serve them a drink before you realize they've had too much? These are all easily answered questions if you have the right training. Some states require alcohol training while many others do not. I say even if they don't require… Continue

Added by Thomas Shackelford on April 11, 2008 at 12:47pm — 2 Comments

How many hours is too many?

This is for the management of the restaurant world. Some of us are very fortunate and only do 40, 45, or even 50 hours a week. Since my restaurant is a dinner only concept I fall in that categorie.

Yesterday I heard a horror story from a guy that worked at a concept down the street that quit his new management job because he was scheduled a minimum of 60 hours a week and was pulling probably close to 70 hours a week due to the simple fact that he didn't know what he was doing and was left… Continue

Added by Thomas Shackelford on April 11, 2008 at 12:04am — 11 Comments

Tipped employee's hourly wage increases...and increases...and increases.

We are in a new era in the restaurant industry. Minimum wage is going up everywhere for hourly employees. Many states have already felt the effects of the tipped employee wage increase. Some states have only taken a slight hit while others have gone up to $6.50 and $7.50 an hour.

For the employees that's incredible! The managers and business owners feel it the most in their own pocket books with less cash coming in. I'm all for our hourly staff members to recieve the money they deserve and… Continue

Added by Thomas Shackelford on April 6, 2008 at 11:25pm — 5 Comments

Thank You for NOT Smoking!

In this business, smoking is something we have to deal with daily. If you hire a staff that doesn't smoke then I want to know where you got them. I'm not saying people that smoke are not good or even great workers. But lets face it, privelages are given to the smokers that end up having to be given to everyone. Its only fair right?

Sometimes when someone wants to take a smoke break you get the sarcastic smart employee that comes up to you and asks if they can go take a phone break or have… Continue

Added by Thomas Shackelford on March 14, 2008 at 9:35am — 3 Comments

Burning Out VS. Burning Bright!

In this business you can find yourself working a lot of hours as a manager! At the end of your 5, 6, or 7 days of working ten or more hours per shift, how do you keep the energy alive?

Remember, the management sets tone and energy for the restaurant! Every staff member checks the "Temperature of the restaurant" when they come in for the shift. Attitudes ARE contagious! Do you set the tone and energy for the restaurant? How do you do it?

Added by Thomas Shackelford on February 11, 2008 at 12:54am — 6 Comments

Going Green!

My restaurant is not a green restaurant by standard but I was curious about how much more it costs to just make the slightest of difference?

I'm basicly talking about being a recycling restaurant at the very least! Lets face it, we produce soooo much garbage in a given work day and if we don't get our trash pick-up on the scheduled day we are overflowing! What would it take to have seperate trash cans, dumpsters, and so on...

I understand this is a huge undertaking. Hell it's…


Added by Thomas Shackelford on February 2, 2008 at 10:36pm — 4 Comments

That's Gross!

I've worked in the industry for too many years now and I've never seen ANYTHING that has been really that gross...doesn't mean it doesn't happen!

After the movie "Waiting" came out everyone outside of the business thought that was the way things worked in most restaurants. I've had may people refuse to send thier food back if it was incorrect because they said,"Oh no, I've seen that Waiting movie. I don't want anything to happen to my food."

I'm not saying throw your old or…


Added by Thomas Shackelford on February 1, 2008 at 1:00am — 3 Comments

A career in foodservice: Tough on relationships

Balancing love, business is like walking a tightrope

look at a restaurant as an organic, living being, constantly needing to be massaged, undressed, dressed," says Henry Meer, chef-owner of Cub Room and City Hall in New York. "My wife and I have gone through a tremendous amount of discussion about how, for the first few years, she was the mistress and the restaurant was the wife."

Many good owners and managers are similarly devoted, heart and soul, to their restaurants -- quite…


Added by Thomas Shackelford on February 1, 2008 at 12:13am — 4 Comments

Tipper Rankings.

I know most of us in the industry know how to tip or even tip too much but here is a list of the WORST and BEST Tippers from Bartender Magazine. Agree or disagree? Share your thoughts because of course, there is always exceptions.

The best tippers:

  • Restaurant People
  • Regular Customers
  • Small Business Owners
  • Hairdressers
  • Liquor Salesmen
  • Limo Drivers
  • Salesmen



Added by Thomas Shackelford on January 31, 2008 at 11:33pm — 5 Comments




Social Wine Club for Craft Wineries


The Sip

The Sip: Stay up-to-date on the beer, wine and spirits category with original content from SmartBrief -More

New food offerings helped Starbucks boost sales

Baked goods, breakfast sandwiches and the first price increases in nearly four years helped lead Starbucks to a 7% same-store -More


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National News

Ward Whitworth Named President for On The Border Mexican Grill

On The Border Mexican Grill & Cantina, which was recently acquired by Border Holdings, LLC, an affiliate of Argonne Capital Group, today announced the appointment of Ward Whitworth as President of On The Border.

The Melting Pot Targets Houston and El Paso, Texas for Franchise Expansion

Restaurants, Inc. announced today that it is actively seeking franchisees to expand its presence throughout the Lone Star State, naming El Paso and Houston as target markets for future franchise development.

Encore Restaurants Purchases 8 Existing Five Guys Restaurants, Plans to Develop 45 More

Encore Restaurants, LLC, a subsidiary of Dallas-based Encore Enterprises, Inc., has announced the purchase of eight existing Five Guys Burgers and Fries restaurants across central California including Elk Grove, Fresno, Lodi, Natomas, Roseville, Stockton, Tracy, and West Sacramento.

Takeout Orders to Hotels Jumped 125% in Popularity in Last Three Years

For many Americans, hotel room service is considered a travel luxury; however, data from PFK Hospitality Research1 suggests that room service revenues fell 9.5 percent from 2007 to 2012, with some hotels shuttering unprofitable operations altogether.

National Restaurant Association Praises House and Senate Commerce Committee Passage of Travel Promotion Act

Yesterday the National Restaurant Association (NRA) praised the House passage and Senate Commerce Committee markup of the Travel Promotion, Enhancement and Modernization Act of 2014. The bipartisan legislation reauthorizes Brand USA, the nation’s first global marketing campaign, to promote the United States as a destination for international travelers.


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TED: Ze Frank: Are you human? - Ze Frank (2014)

Have you ever wondered: Am I a human being? Ze Frank suggests a series of simple questions that will determine this. Please relax and follow the prompts. Let's begin …

TED: Heather Barnett: What humans can learn from semi-intelligent slime - Heather Barnett (2014)

Inspired by biological design and self-organizing systems, artist Heather Barnett co-creates with physarum polycephalum, a eukaryotic microorganism that lives in cool, moist areas. What can people learn from the semi-intelligent slime mold? Watch this talk to find out.

TED: Shih Chieh Huang: Sculptures that’d be at home in the deep sea - Shih Chieh Huang (2014)

When he was young, artist Shih Chieh Huang loved taking toys apart and perusing the aisles of night markets in Taiwan for unexpected objects. Today, this TED Fellow creates madcap sculptures that seem to have a life of their own—with eyes that blink, tentacles that unfurl and parts that light up like bioluminescent sea creatures.

TED: Nikolai Begg: A tool to fix one of the most dangerous moments in surgery - Nikolai Begg (2013)

Surgeons are required every day to puncture human skin before procedures — with the risk of damaging what's on the other side. In a fascinating talk, find out how mechanical engineer Nikolai Begg is using physics to update an important medical device, called the trocar, and improve one of the most dangerous moments in many common surgeries.

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