Jon Taffer, award-winning hospitality expert, business consultant, and celebrity entrepreneur, announced the launch of his own, innovative restaurant concept Taffer’s Tavern, a high-volume, small footprint format that uses the latest technologies to produce high-quality food and beverage offerings without the need for a traditional commercial kitchen. Taffer is partnering with Fransmart, the franchise development company behind the growth of brands like The Halal Guys, Five Guys Burgers & Fries, and QDOBA Mexican Grill, as the exclusive franchise development partner to facilitate expansion for the emerging brand.
Building on Taffer’s more than three decades of hands-on consulting experience specializing in nightclubs and pubs, Taffer’s Tavern is designed to unite a best-in-class beverage program and the most interesting bar fare with a streamlined kitchen and the latest advancements in food preparation technology, requiring far less space and far fewer employees than traditional casual-dining restaurants. Together with Fransmart, he is seeking out experienced franchisees to bring the Taffer’s Tavern concept to the 50 largest media markets throughout North America, with a priority focus in Las Vegas, Washington D.C. and similar trade areas.
“Taffer’s Tavern is a smart, new casual concept poised to address the multiple pain points that I see frequently across the industry,” Taffer says. “Our vision is to create exciting, first-rate menu items in a setting that doesn’t require a traditional range hood and ventilation system, which allows for tremendous versatility in scouting preferred locations and streamlining restaurant operations. I came to Fransmart because I knew they would understand and embrace my vision, and I look forward to working together to find franchise partners who are as passionate as I am to bring Taffer’s Tavern across the continent.”
Just as fast casual and quick-service concepts blurred the lines between casual dining and fast-food chains to become today’s restaurant industry darlings, Taffer plans to apply his extensive experience and business acumen to define a “new casual” dining experience and franchise offering with Taffer’s Tavern. In addition to the investment opportunity of a unique, high-volume concept with low price conversions, reduced staffing requirements and broad real estate appeal, Taffer’s Tavern franchise partners will also benefit from the combined expertise that Taffer and Fransmart bring to the table, from innovative menu design and creative marketing, to employee training programs and customer service strategies. There will be servers, but also self-ordering and copacked kitchens for lower labor levels.
“Every large franchise group I’ve spoken to is interested in this type of concept,” says Fransmart founder and CEO Dan Rowe. “The idea of doing more volume in smaller spaces, lower capex and with fewer employees is right on the money. There are several high-quality locations with tired, irrelevant casual dining restaurant concepts that we are targeting to convert to Taffer’s Tavern.”
Taffer takes a no-excuses approach to counseling family-run businesses as the host and executive producer of docu-reality series Bar Rescue on Paramount Network, where he offers his professional expertise, plus renovations and equipment upgrades, to desperately failing bars in order to save them from closing. Paramount Network recently announced the show’s renewal for a seventh season, and revealed a new, original spinoff called Marriage Rescue, in which Taffer uses unconventional methods to help married couples rebuild their relationships.