Economics Matters by Laurence Kotlikoff
Economics Matters by Laurence Kotlikoff Podcast
Serving Up Success: Economic Strategies for Restaurateurs with Sophie Cranin

Serving Up Success: Economic Strategies for Restaurateurs with Sophie Cranin

Economics Matters with Laurence Kotlikoff

Sophie Cranin is Director of Operations at ES Hospitality, which owns and operates several of the top restaurants in Boston. ES Hospitality is the brainchild of Garrett Harker, who is well known for Row 34, Branch Line, and Eastern Standard. Row 34 is in the South End, Branch Line is in Watertown, and Eastern Standard is a 10 minute walk to Fenway Park. Sophie works closely with Garret on all his ventures and operations. Her path to a terrific career in food services started off, as do so many success stories, on the wrong foot -- majoring in linguistics at Tulane. But before college she became exposed to the restaurant industry by simply working in a Cape Cod food shack. That summer she started working her way up the ladder starting at the ice cream window. Elbow-deep in a carton of Black Raspberry, she loved the ability to turn someone's day around with the power of hospitality.

In This Episode:

I welcome Sophie Cranin to discuss the bustling dynamics of the restaurant business. Sophie, with a robust background that spans public health, linguistics, and retail management, shifted gears to immerse herself fully in the restaurant industry, working with some of the leading figures like Garrett Harker. Her diverse experiences and the insight gained from managing various aspects of the restaurant scene make her a voice of authority in this field.

Topics Covered:

  • Economics of Restaurant Management

  • Challenges in Modern Dining

  • Customer Experience and Retention

Time Stamps:

00:00 Barbara has diverse restaurants, works with eastern Standard.

05:05 Struggling to find a career path.

12:39 Kenmore Square evolving into Fenway center; development and potential.

16:00 Passion for human resources leads to opportunity.

17:12 Seize opportunities, exceed expectations, create new paths.

22:37 Social spaces are crucial for community after COVID.

25:54 Financing depends on project scope and size.

30:09 Balancing costs and profits in restaurant industry.

33:48 Adjustments and feedback are crucial for success.

37:11 Tourists often support bad restaurants, consumer choice matters.

39:16 Restaurants use friends and family for feedback.

41:59 Restaurants need consistency in executing creative dishes.

44:31 Add salt gradually during cooking, not all at once.

49:05 Visual presentation enhances perceived value in dining.

53:21 Food delivery services have pros and cons.

54:37 Versatile individual excels in multiple fields.

This conversation will equip you with a deeper understanding of what it takes to thrive in the competitive restaurant industry and the nuanced economic decisions behind seemingly simple dining experiences. Whether you are a budding restaurateur, a seasoned foodie, or just curious about the economics of eating out, this episode delivers valuable insights into the art and science of hospitality.


Take the guesswork out of financial decisions at every stage of life with Maxifi: ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠. Designed by Economist Laurence Kotlikoff.

Economic Matters - The podcast is hosted by Laurence Kotlikoff and moderated by Alex Kotlikoff.

Laurence Kotlikoff is a Boston University Economist, a NY Times Best Selling Author, President of, and Author of Money Magic.

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Economics Matters by Laurence Kotlikoff
Economics Matters by Laurence Kotlikoff Podcast
Economics can make a massive difference - collectively and personally. Listen in as we chat with some of the most influential leaders in economics across the globe.