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View Full Version : Mixing entertainment and food was a winning


Steve
11-21-2007, 10:16 AM
I just happened to catch a video on this business and thought it was fascinating. Have you ever been to one of these restaurants? It's quite an entertaining show!

There is so much fascinating stuff that goes on behind the scenes to make this entire process work as well. Aoki's grouping of eight people per table ensured a profitable cycle time. This is fascinating because they don't start the cooking show until they can seat the 8 people unless they are really slow. This then ensures you have 8 people sitting down eating and watching the show all at the same time. Then when they are done, the next show occurs!

It makes you wonder how come other restaurants havent jumped on to using showmanship like this? Could they do it for other foods? Why not! It would just take some creativity.

How fascinating is it to think that theatrics and food cooking never really came together until Benihana!

Does it make you wonder what you could combine to make for an interesting and profitable service?



Benihana (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benihana_(restaurant)) - Benihana has its roots in Japan in the years immediately following World War II. Yunosuke Aoki, a samurai descendant and entertainer, along with his wife, Katsu, opened a small coffee shop in Tokyo. The shop was named "Benihana" ("crimson flower" in Japanese) after a red safflower that grew in the streets. Run by the Aokis and their four sons, this coffee shop eventually became a full service restaurant.

The eldest son, Hiroaki (later Americanized as Rocky) took after his father's appreciation for the theatrical, including the notion of combining Japanese food with entertainment. Rocky opened his first restaurant in 1964 in New York on West 56th Street with room enough for just four tables.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/0/01/Benihana_dinner.jpg/180px-Benihana_dinner.jpg

Video on the founder.

http://images.forbes.com/media/assets/forbes_home_logo.gif (http://video.google.com/url?docid=3259079537382315548&esrc=sr7&ev=v&len=265&q=entrepreneur&srcurl=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.forbes.com%2Fvideo%2F%3Fvi deo%3Dfvn%2Fadventurer%2Fjc_adv041207%26partner%3D googlevid&vidurl=%2Fvideoplay%3Fdocid%3D3259079537382315548% 26q%3Dentrepreneur%26total%3D8449%26start%3D0%26nu m%3D10%26so%3D0%26type%3Dsearch%26plindex%3D6&usg=AL29H215bHzGsLXy-j5gxoD-xWaJg6QlXQ)
The Benihana restaurant founder discusses his days as a super-boat racer, balloonist and Olympic wrestler.