Opening any restaurant is a gamble, but the odds are especially stacked against health-food businesses. There are a lot of reasons not to take the plunge. If you remain undaunted, here’s some advice from the market’s most successful chefs and business owners.
Find a food that desperately needs a healthy makeover. Lukas Volger founded Made By Lukas after writing an entire cookbook on veggie burgers, and realizing that “there was nothing luxurious about frozen veggie burgers.” Loren Brill was frustrated that she couldn’t find a single store-bought cookie that used whole-grain flours and organic sugar, with no preservatives, so packaged her own cookie dough, Sweet Loren’s (now sold at Whole Foods). Franklin Becker of New York’s casual, fast-growing eatery, The Little Beet, says, “there was no lunch place that people feel safe with, that didn’t involve sandwiches.”