sweetriot was truly honored to serve cacao at an event with Danny Meyer this week. If you're not familiar with Danny, he is truly one of the leading restaurateurs and business visionaries in the world. Danny was speaking to EO, the Entrepreneurs Organization, which brings together entrepreneurs from around NYC and the world. (I'm in EO's new program for start up entrepreneurs!) :)
Danny recently published a book, Setting the Table, and he shares pointers well beyond his own restaurant industry for any aspiring business leader. The event was also held at this amazing place overlooking the Hudson River, and the view was one you often don't see in NYC.
Right outside of the window, you could see the 'rays of light' that are shown at Ground Zero every 911 -- and the most special thing about the evening was what Danny shared about 911. He talked about his restaurant's responses -- for example, 11 Madison's team started cooking in the nearby Salvation Army where families were being taken, and Union Square Cafe stayed open just to serve its community as best it could. The Cafe became a place where those who couldn't find their loved ones were able to reunite. Those stories for him helped solidify the importance of his work overall as he realized his restaurants are indeed a 'home away from home' for his customers.
And most importantly, the restaurants individually all made their own decisions on how to carry out Danny's vision of giving and caring without his supervision in how to do it. I can imagine as a fellow entrepreneur how good it felt to see the teams around him fully empowered and executing in a meaningful and heartful way on such a tragic day. I commend Danny for his leadership in NYC and for creating institutions of warmth that welcome so many poeple from around the world every year. There simply is no other who can continue to claim top Zagats ratings in NYC year after year after year. Danny and the great team at Union Square Hospitality Group can.