"The message to restaurateurs is simple: Ignore data at your peril, said Mr. Mogavero, the author of a recent book, “The Underground Culinary Tour,”about how data has transformed the restaurant industry."
"Damian Mogavero, a dining-industry consultant, has analyzed the data behind thousands of restaurants—which dishes get ordered, which servers bring in the highest bills, and even what the weather’s like—and found that these metrics can help inform the decisions and practices of restaurateurs. Ultimately, Mogavero believes that the data he collects is really a way to learn how to make customers happy. Mogavero recently wrote a book about analytics called The Underground Culinary Tour—which is also the name of an annual insider retreat he runs, in which he leads restaurateurs from around the nation to what he considers the most innovative restaurants in New York City, with 15 stops in 24 hours."
“The restaurant industry, there’s a lot of artistry in it. And one of the things that I noticed when I was in the restaurant industry is I would ask very simple questions to my chefs and managers, you know, ‘Why do your food costs go up? Why do your labor costs go up? Who are your top and bottom servers?’” said Mogavero, founder of the software company Avero. “And I would get blank stares and wrong answers.”
The restaurant industry isn't a likely partner for big data, even though it generates a ton. Historically, decisions about how things are run are fueled by the chef's intuition. But where some saw an odd coupling, Damian Mogavero saw opportunity.