Josh Kopel | Award Winning Restaurant Consultant

Restaurant Consulting

Restaurant Labor Cost: Episode 159 with Wolfgang Puck

Who do you look to for inspiration? For me, it’s always been Wolfgang Puck and not just because he’s a talent chef and restaurateur, but because he’s a skilled entrepreneur.

Even without a formal business education, the chef has built an international empire. In today’s conversation we unpack the critical decisions he made to get it to the top and overcome the obstacles along they way.


[2:11] Rising from ashes: how a household name was born in the journey from one hell to the next

[5:11] Staying above the fray: how Chef defied the odds and stayed off the sauce

[6:35] Showmanship and status: the evolution of an industry

[8:51] Dreaming big, sinking in, and mastering hospitality as a craft

[11:59] Accelerating an education: lessons learned in the early days at Spago

[13:07] The critical decisions that shaped one of the world’s best-known chefs

[15:35] Mistakes and what we can learn from the man who’s failed his way to unparalleled success.

[20:34] Get knocked down, get back up: fear as a motivator

[22:15] Staying relevant: a lesson in innovative evolution and finding balance

[24:30] Chef’s recipe for success

[27:24] Marketing greatness: why personal relationships are the backbone of success

[29:51] Pandemic perspective: projections from the man who sees opportunity where others don’t

[31:47] Passing a legacy on: hopes from a father to his children for a healthy succession

[34:08] Defining and communicating success

[35:56] The gift of listening: advice from a legend

For more on the chef, visit

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