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Opening in the Time of COVID

MVB Coffee Lounge by Marcell Von Berlin on Melrose Ave. in West Hollywood, CA In February of 2020, I took a trip to LA to visit a prospective cafe. I was excited for the opportunity to plan out a beautiful cafe with an edgy menu on trendy Melrose Avenue in West Hollywood in the iconic storefront of designer Marcell Von Berlin. I had lived in LA previously for over five years, so the client base and the location were already familiar to me. I had already sketched out a food an

New CEO and New Direction for Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf

An Interview with Sanjiv Razdan, President Despite the many challenges over the past 15 months, Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf have continued to experience growth. With a full head of steam, the iconic California coffee brand is heading in a new direction. Industry veteran Sanjiv Razdan (former COO of Sweetgreen, Applebee’s, and Yum Brands) has just recently started as the new President of the Americas and Indian market. They have big plans of expansion for the company, so Sanjiv a

Master Moments: Nick Stone

I recently connected with the intrepid leader of Bluestone Lane, Nick Stone, to see how one of our most energetic and forward-thinking CEOs would manage the current retail climate. Of course, if you’ve never been into a Bluestone Lane, you may not understand the level of quality experience you are in for, considering they are operating over 30 cafes coast to coast. Each space is unique to the space and neighborhood it lives in, yet with a particular touchpoint that lets you k

Unconventional Conventions

As we turn the corner on six months into the Pandemic and closing out summer we are starting to miss some of the things that were our seasonal favorites like… Trade Shows! We kind of complain about them in advance however we all depend on them for networking, finding products and reconnecting with our friends and like-minded people. The days of crowded convention floors, free samples and endless totes of schwag are on hold for now… Since we cannot gather in mass, how do we ke

Virtual Café: Adaptation Series

Any time there is an extreme event in history there are always two camps of people: those that see difficulty and struggle in every opportunity and those that see opportunity in every difficulty. The world has changed whether we are happy with it or not. Entropy has occurred and our system will never go in reverse but rather evolve in a forward direction. What is the future of the food and beverage industry? How will it evolve? I have read some pretty bleak prophecies from th

OVID-reaction: Adaptation Series

Over reaction is never the correct reaction. As we are all aware, the global population was affected by a huge change this year and it has impacted our lives, our habits, our relationships and our pleasures. Many businesses have gone under and almost all have had to adapt or pivot their offerings and systems for working. These are positive changes as they are necessary to survival. That being said, some business may be overcompensating to the detriment of their long-term busi

Retro-Reno Concept: Adaptation Series

Adaptation Series 1 Throwback to Mid-Town Lunch – vending cafes for densely populated cities. The current pandemic is going to populate some pages over some months as this is obviously what is consuming all of our attention. In the food and beverage industry we are all poking and testing what will be the way forward and how this whole thing is going to break and when. Unfortunately we have no idea and any amount of speculation is likely going to be incorrect. This is why the

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