If there’s one business venture that’s even more volatile than print media these days, it’s restaurant and bar ownership. As we learned from chatting up proprietors of various NYC watering holes recently, only about 24% of U.S. restaurants survive until their tenth year, and that rate drops to an astonishing 3% in New York.
With this in mind, it may come as a surprise that Condé Nast has been extending its brand into the hospitality game, according to the Business of Fashion. Granted, the media power player isn’t going for the NYC market, but there is already a GQ Bar in Instanbul, and a Vogue Club set to open in Singapore. And that’s just the start: “GQ- and Vogue-themed bars, cafes and clubs will open in Dubai and Bangkok. Similar ventures are planned in Latin America.” All of this is in aid of brand diversification, says Jonathan Newhouse, chairman and chief executive of Condé Nast International: “Our business can no longer be defined strictly as publishing, but takes the form of brand management.”
Well, two can play at that game, Condé Nast! We’re thinking we might need to get into the bar game too, and we’ve been brainstorming for literally 45 minutes, if not longer, about how we’re going to do it. Check it out:
Specs for the First We Feast pub empire, expected 2016
- Locations: Little Rock, AR; Glasgow, Scotland; the Gobi Desert; and the last carriage of the Amtrak Acela
- Food: The menu will be an ode to forgotten American bar snacks, like the potato skin. There will also be a nacho menu featuring weekly specials and a core menu representing the most important nacho styles, such as bar nachos and classic nachos made simply with cheese and fresh jalapeños.
- Drinks: The craft-beer program will be site specific, with half of the list devoted to all-time greats, and the other half to local options (except in the Gobi Desert, where we will serve only Chinggis Khan vodka). Bartenders will be able to mix proper Manhattans, Negronis, and Martinis, and there will be a frozen pina colada machine on the go at all times.
- Decor: All chairs will have massaging properties. Murals of Larry Bird will be commissioned at each location.
- Music: There will be a jukebox that mostly has Pantera. Once a week, there will be a showcase of local R&B singers.
- Games: Fuck games, but one small room will be devoted to the enormous type of Jenga.
- Policies: No music during sports, only the sound from the game (and the only sports aired will be day-time international and Premiership football matches, the World Darts Championships, and the NBA Finals). No service if you are wearing a Hawaiian shirt. No Stairway to Heaven.
See you there!