What does Jonathan Morr think makes a successful restaurant?
In school, they will teach you location, location, location, which is true. But for me, it’s food, food, food. The food has to be really good. It’s all about the food. The days where it’s not about the food are over — and have been for a while. But I think great food just brings people back. At the end of the day, that’s what restaurants are about: food. The ambience and all that, for sure, but it’s food that’s important.
I prefer to work with very talented chefs that are not necessarily known or famous. I pick chefs by their palate and taste buds, which is much more important to me than fame or even experience. It also allows me to be more involved and create dishes and menu concepts in collaboration. Most recently I hired Andy Choi [previously at Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star Le Cirque New York and Má Pêche] for Cherry, a new French-Japanese restaurant I opened downtown.