Manhattan is home to hundreds of independent pizzerias, each claiming singularity and superiority of style and ingredient quality or some combination thereof. Starting a pizza restaurant in this crowded, stubbornly opinionated landscape isn’t easy—something Italian chef Giacomo Baldi knew well when he opened PN Wood Fired Pizza in the NoMad neighborhood in 2016.
Amid the current wave of powerhouse restaurant groups debuting one multimillion-dollar buildout after the next, it’s easy to forget that much of the restaurant industry is still made up of those ragtag owner-operated spots launched with a few bucks and a dream.
A group of countries spanning from North Africa to Asia, the Middle East is at the crossroads of rich cultures, fallen empires, and centuries of migration. It encompasses wide-ranging geographies, from vast, empty deserts to lush countrysides, long coastlines, and rocky mountains.
Even as momentum has slowed in the fast-casual sector, full-service operators and chefs continue to enter the quick-service fray en masse. Some want a crack at becoming the next Shake Shack or Sweetgreen, attracting investors and big potential profits.
Dining out is a holistic experience—a delicate interplay of aroma, taste, sights, sounds, and environment. Interior design choices can transport guests from a suburban strip mall to a bustling downtown hotspot or 200 years back in time to a London opium den.
It’s no secret that staffing is a perennial challenge for restaurants—a struggle that extends to the gig economy, too. As traditional notions of work shift and on demand–type gigs become widespread, the industry continues to benefit from new apps dedicated to finding and placing restaurant workers at all levels.
Like so many culinary traditions born out of necessity, the Italian approach to meat cookery and preservation has migrated and evolved over generations in the U.S. as chefs adapt these centuries-old methods to contemporary kitchens.