May Seem Impossible Starting A Restaurant In A Pandemic
Try Relocating One
No pandemic was going to stop Chicken Latino and Shelbin Santos from relocating!
In July of 2019, Chicken Latino said it planned on moving the restaurant from the Produce Terminal District to a new location the following year. Well, she kept her word and one year later have relocated to 2100 Broadway Ave in Pittsburgh’s Beechview neighborhood.
The restaurant was founded by Peruvian native Shelbin Santos in 2007 and served a mix of dishes from around Latin America, including Peruvian chicken.
I’m sure being established for over 13 years helped make a move easier. But relocating never comes with any guarantees (I can vouch for that) now throw a pandemic into the step. You are gambling with your life and business any time you relocate a business, but dealing with a virus and disrupted industry had to be more overwhelming than usual.
There comes a time when a business may need to move for it to grow financially. Chef Shelbin had been planning it for a year, and nothing was going to stop her!
“Even today, some of my fondest memories from childhood are when we would sit down with extended family and dine on traditional Peruvian dishes from recipes my mother created. I wanted to bring that whole experience to America.” She was continuing to bring that experience to her new location.
Santos has gone to great lengths to deliver that authentic Peruvian experience. She even imported a special wood-fired brick oven from Peru that enables her to cook unique dishes in an authentic Peruvian style. With her oven and recipes from home, Santos has brought a unique Latino flavor to a neighborhood known for great food.
It is nice to find a silver lining in this pandemic. Too many restaurants and small businesses are experiencing terrible hard times.
There are several reasons for Chicken Latino’s success, and they are all responsible for making the relocation of her business possible during a pandemic.
Chicken Latino’s 13 years of longevity didn’t happen by luck!
I believe defining the cuisine you want to serve when you open a restaurant is the first decision you should make. There must be a need and desire; the second decision important is finding customers for it! Once you have your audience, you need to find the best location for them.
Santos did all three, (1) her Peruvian ethnic cuisine, (2) found a local audience willing to embrace new flavors and experiences for Peru’s food (3) located right in the heart of the Strip District. “Here in Pittsburgh, it’s so cultural,” she says. “It’s a melting pot, just like Peru, but the people are so wonderful it feels like a small community. It’s very welcoming here. I love Pittsburgh, and I love my restaurant here.”
Pittsburgh’s Strip District is a neighborhood full of character and vibrating with visitors. A unique, five-block-long historic structure for purveyors of good vibes, fresh eats, craft drafts, and everything in between to create an enjoyable destination.
It would be hard to know precisely why Santos wanted to move her location because I’m not a customer or a friend or relative. I will take a few guesses. Since she had planned it for a year, she must have seen things changing in the Strip District, rents going up, oversaturated with competition and or just time to go where she could be more financially stable. Whatever it was, she knew it was time for a change. To do it during a pandemic showed determination and nothing was going to stop her.
Her new location appears to be a place she researched and planned a whole year before the actual move. She didn’t plan on the pandemic, but she did know that the Beechview, a neighborhood in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania was the right location.
Beechview has a population of 7,987. It is in Allegheny County and is one of the best places to live in Pennsylvania. Living in Beechview offers residents a dense suburban feel, and most residents own their homes. In Beechview, there are a lot of bars, restaurants, coffee shops, and parks. Many young professionals live in Beechview, and residents tend to be liberal and open to ethnic cuisines!
I’d say she did her research, why wouldn’t she, Chicken Latino was her dream come true and she wasn’t going to let no worldwide pandemic STOP her!
Are You Wanting To Start A Restaurant?
Regardless Of The Pandemic Now Is The Time Do Research
If you want to be a successful restaurant like Chicken Latino you must do research!
Creating and deciding your cuisine is one of the most important decisions you will ever make.
I know the location, location, and location BUT how can you decide where to locate your restaurant without knowing who wants to eat the cuisine you’re offering. You need to know where those people live, work, and play before you even think about locating your restaurant. This is why you must start by being absolutely sure people are going to eat what you are serving on your menu.
There are tons of resources on how to run a restaurant.
But there are few that put enough emphasis on how to ⇒ “START ONE”⇐
I cover and show you precisely what you need to do!
You Are One Decision Away From Learning How to ⇒Start a Successful Restaurant⇐!
What Are You Waiting For?