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Running a Restaurant/Food Court Consultant


Hi David,

I am leasing some space in a shopping centre which is expected to be built by mid 2014. As the time is coming close to writing up the lease with the landlord and sub-leasing to the respective food tenants, I need to know the mechanics/infrastructure of a food court so I can provide responsibility for it in the leases. ie The landlord is to provide ventilation shafts, I (as tenant) provide the mechanical fans and the sub-tenant provides for their own fitout including benchtops, ovens, rangehoods all of which must be to a certain standard.
I have found it difficult to find a food court consultant in NZ, so am looking further afield. At this stage I have had an Architect draw me some 3D pictures to help me sell to sub-tenants, but has no idea when it comes to a spec sheet and who normally pays for what. Can you help?

Hi Jeff,

I am sorry that I have been slow to respond.  We have a great deal of experience in mall food court leasing.  We have two active food court projects going on right now.

What I need to understand is your role in this project.  Are you going to manage/operate the entire food court and you will want to sublease spaces to various operators?  Some clarification will help me to answer the question more thoroughly.

This may be beyond the scope of what we can answer with no fee. If it isn't too technical, I can provide a general answer to your question.  If you are looking for a detailed breakout of what the landlord should provide, what you should provide and what your sub-tenants should provide, we will need to visit about the time involved on our part to assist.

Jeff, if you would like to reach me directly at feel free to email me and we can go from there.  If you would prefer to keep in on here, just respond with clarification as to your role in the project.

I hope this helps!

David Foster

Foster and Associates
(417) 877-0428 office
(417) 849-1903 cell  

Running a Restaurant

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David Foster


We have been in the restaurant industry for over 40 years and consult with restaurants, casinos, food court concepts, bars and hotels nationwide. We love helping restaurant operators succeed and can answer any questions related to restaurant start-ups, business plans, operations, labor costs, food costs, liquor costs, employee turnover, marketing, operational improvements, franchising etc.


I am a seasoned foodservice veteran with nearly 50 years experience in the industry. My extensive background includes overseeing multi-unit, multi-concept restaurant operations ranging from cafeterias to fine dining, and everything in between. I have a strong hands-on operations and marketing background that give me a unique insight into the “Real World” challenges of the restaurant industry. I have extensive concept development, menu and recipe development and kitchen layout and design expertise. I am effective in analyzing operational needs and identifying practical solutions in today’s very dynamic foodservice environment. In the industry, I am respected by my peers and have served on the Board of Directors of the Missouri Restaurant Association and have been a featured speaker on the subject of Home Meal Replacement at various national events. I also served on the Culinary Advisory Board of the Ozark Technical College as well as serving on the Board of Directors of Big Brothers, Big Sisters of the Ozarks.

Member of the National Restaurant Association, Past Board Member of the Missouri Restaurant Association, Past Board Member of Big Brothers, Big Sisters of the Ozarks

The Consultant, Seasoned Views (a trade magazine for the restaurant industry, QSR - a publication dedicated to quick serve and fast casual concepts.

Attended Drury University, Springfield, MO, Varsity Management, SRI

Awards and Honors
I have had restaurant projects featured in The Consultant (a magazine for foodservice consultants with worldwide circulation). I was honored for achieving the highest level of management competence by the Selection Research Institute.

Past/Present Clients
Sugar Creek Casino, Classic Rock Coffee Company, Mark Twain Brewing Company, Springfield Brewing Company, Bruegger's Bagels, M&M Grill, Paco Joe's, Holiday Inn, Hilton Garden Inn, Buffalo Run Casino, Golden Corral Corporation, Crosswinds Café, Chinese Chef, Mr. Dunderbak's Old World Market & Café, Bullfeather’s Wings and Grille, Mainstreet Market, Bear Rock Café, Cartoon's Oyster Bar & Grill, T's Redneck Roadhouse, Jim's Steakhouse, Neighbor's Mill Bakery & Café, Crazy Vine, San Francisco Oven, Maria's Mexican Restaurant, Andy's Frozen Custard, The Granite Club, Umi Japanese Steak, Seafood and Sushi, Springfield Grocer Company, US Foodservice, Premium Standard Farms, Smithfield, Dakota Organic, Kraft Foods, Allens, Inc.

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