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NativeAdVantage 10-Q2BA:

(10 Questions 2B Answered)

What do you do best?
What makes you the best?
Biggest success?
What are your aspirations?
Most challenging moment?
Favorite Motto?
Favorite People?
Favorite Places?
Favorite Products?
Current Passions?


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Andy Weir: Author of "The Martian"

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Tom Sito: Chair of Animation, USC Film School

Elizabeth Wynn: Broker, Sotheby's RE

Leonard Greenhalgh: Professor, Tuck-Darmouth)

Ryan Blair: NY Times Best Selling Author/Entrepreneur

 

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Shai Reshef: Founder of University of the People

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Greg Marsh: Co-Founder of onefinestay

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Jon Gray: CRO of HomeAway

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Ben McKean: Co-Founder of HungryRoot

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Wayne Pacelle: CEO of The Humane Society of the US

Tom Guay: GM at The Sagamore Resort

Dr. Alejandro Junger: Founder of The Clean Program

Rob Flaherty: CEO of Ketchum

Neil Thanedar: Founder/CEO of LabDoor

Andy Grinsfelder: VP of Sales/Marketing, Delaware North Resorts

Laura Frerer-Schmidt: VP/Publisher of Women's Health

Avi Steinlauf: CEO of Edmunds.com

Kathy Bloomgarden: CEO of Ruder Finn

Gabriel Flateman: Co-Founder/CTO of Casper

Mark Bartels: CEO of StumbleUpon

Bill Hagelstein: President/CEO of RPA

Adam Singolda: Founder/CEO of Taboola

Jonathan Plutzik: Proprietor of The Betsy-South Beach

Jessica Scorpio: Founder/VP of Marketing at GetAround

Ralph McRae: CEO of Leading Brands

Warren Berger: Bestselling Author

Liz Kaplow: Founder/CEO of Kaplow Communications

Dave Girouard: Founder/CEO of UpStart

Dave Asprey: Founder of BullectProof Executive

Douglas C. Smith: President of EDSA

Val Difebo: CEO of Deutsch NY

Guido Polito: CEO of Baglioni Hotels

Doyle Graham, Jr.: CEO of Valencia Group

Oscar Farinetti: Founder of Eataly

Angelo Sotira: CEO of DeviantART

Ali Khwaja: CFO of Safecharge

Zach Erdem: Proprietor of 75 Main

Jim Beley: GM of The Umstead Hotel

Alexis Gelburd-Kimler: Proprietor of West Bridge

Elie Georges: Proprietor of Hotel San Regis

Kalen Caughey: Founder o VOKE Tab

Michael Friedenberg: CEO of IDG

Donna Karan: Founder of DKNY

Edward Nardoza: Editor-in-Chief of WWD

Scott Dadich: Editor-in-Chief of Wired

Rhona Murphy: Former CEO of The Daily Beast

David J. Pecker: CEO of American Media

Lilian Roten: VP of Swissotel Hotels

Kenny Dichter: Founder/CEO of Wheels Up

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Dr. James Wagner: President of Emory University

Amy Thompson: President of ATM Artists & Management

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Chef Bill Telepan

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Dana Cowin: Editor-in-Chief of Food & Wine

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Peter Shaindlin: COO of Halekulani Corp.

August Cardona: Founder/CEO of Epicurean Group

Nick Kenner: Co-Founder of Just Salad

Wednesday
Oct122016

Chef Jehangir Mehta: Owner, Graffiti & Me and You, & Graffiti Earth

My NativeAdVice:

Bio:

Chef Jehangir Mehta is the chef/owner of Graffiti and Me and You, and Graffiti Earth, has been a participant in Food Network’s Next Iron Chef Redemption 2012, the runner-up at the Next Iron Chef 2009, a participant in the Iron Chef America and a guest on Martha Stewart Living. Known for his signature eclectic style, he uses an array of ingredients and spices to create an interesting juxtapose of temperatures, textures and tastes. The popularity of his distinctive style led to a food rating of 28 on 30 for Graffiti in the 2016 and 2015 Zagat, and listed Graffiti at #11 on the 20 Best Restaurants in NYC.

How did you get into the industry?

I came to the Culinary Institute of America and after completing my studies there realized I really wanted to start my own restaurant. But in order to do that, I knew I had to be a quick learner, not just in the kitchen but had to figure out the business aspect as well. I was fortunate to learn from the best of Chefs such as Rocco DiSpirito and Jean-Georges.

Any emerging industry trends?

The rise of fast casual concepts especially with ethnic foods and the increasing demand for sustainable products.

Any industry opportunities or challenges?

Using technology platforms to enhance the business is a boon to the industry. For example Uber Eats for delivery, and restaurants enhancing revenues through take out orders.  Reservation platforms that help manage labor costs. Mobile payments during check out. Texting customers to let them know their tables are ready. Etc.

Inspiration for the business idea, and your vision for the Business?

The emphasis is on sustainability. Having spent my childhood in a developing country, wastefulness bothers me. So my restaurant Graffiti Earth is therefore, my dedication to being more environmentally sustainable, socially responsible, and it is an attempt to build a community that I hope will come a full circle.  This empathy is reflected throughout the restaurant from the ingredients we source to the causes we believe in.  By dining at Graffiti Earth, our clients too are contributing towards saving our planet.  

Our kitchen too emphasizes sustainability in many ways, including giving plant-based dishes center stage, while using smaller amounts of meat and seafood in ways that maximize flavor.  We primarily cook with “ugly” produce that would otherwise go to waste because of minor and non-flavor-affecting aesthetic flaws, and underutilized seafood, such as broken scallops, that can be caught without damaging ecosystems. The menu is full of sustainable proteins, healthy grains and other ingredients chosen with the ultimate goal of reducing food waste. Even our décor and accessories carry forward this message.

What's next for the Business in the near future?

Expanding out of New York City and going to other cities on the West Coast

Your key initiatives for the success of the Business?

Understanding that the front of the house requires attention to detail, and being able to recognize guests’ needs and fulfilling them without being asked, is as important if not more, than managing a flawless kitchen.

Your most difficult moment at the Business? (and what did you learn?)

When opening new restaurants ensuring that the existing restaurants perform at the same consistent high standards as before despite receiving less attention is always a challenge.

Ideal experience for a customer/client?

Getting my food philosophy across to clients not just through taste, but also through every touch point they have with us and having them feel immersed and involved is what I consider an ideal experience.

How do you motivate others?

I like my customers to appreciate my staff and encourage my team to personalize every experience for our guests.

Career advice to those in your industry?

Learn as much as you can no matter the job you are doing or your designation. Observe, make notes, and ask for more responsibility. There is always someone who is better than you at something. Someone who has more kitchen experience, someone who always knows how to please guests, someone who knows the ins and outs of managing a kitchen. Be cooperative and respect team members. That is the only way you will grow professionally. And last but not the least do not be afraid to take calculated risks.

https://www.facebook.com/jehangir.mehta

https://www.instagram.com/jehangirmehta/

https://twitter.com/jehangir_mehta

(Photo credit: Duane Street Hotel)