Vancouver Restaurants: Crunch The Numbers – “Both establishments were located in downtown Vancouver, where rent prices feast on restaurant profits. MacKay was paying $40,000 in monthly rent for the two locations.”

Two high-profile restaurants run by celebrity chef Dale MacKay served their last suppers last Saturday and closed the doors for good. … MacKay opened Ensemble Tap, a casual restaurant, soon after opening Ensemble. Both were located in downtown Vancouver, where rent prices feast on restaurant profits. He was paying $40,000 in monthly rent for the two locations. “You crunch the numbers, you do your best to forecast and try to attain that,” he said.
“Ensemble did very, very well right off the bat. It was a success. We had good feedback but I went in a little under-capitalized into Tap,” said MacKay. “It’s a big space. It’s not Gastown or the East End. The rents are very, very high.”

– from ‘Top chef Canada, Dale MacKay closes his restaurants’, Mia Stainsbury, Vancouver Sun, 27 Aug 2012 [hat-tip 4SlicesofCheese]

13 responses to “Vancouver Restaurants: Crunch The Numbers – “Both establishments were located in downtown Vancouver, where rent prices feast on restaurant profits. MacKay was paying $40,000 in monthly rent for the two locations.”

  1. Not only the rent he has to contend with but the massive inflation of the cost of food that will be coming due to the drought. Corn, soy and wheat prices will be going up..BIG..In some states they are actually feeding cows CANDY!

  2. A little further down in the article it says he will also leave town, I would only fathom a guess that it is much cheaper to open a restaurant and buy a house in his home town.

    “MacKay says opportunities are coming his way and apart from doing some consulting work, he will most likely head to his home town, Saskatoon, Sask,. where he has family and friends.”

  3. Ensemble did very, very well right off the bat. It was a success.
    Everyone stuck through it to the end.

    🙄

  4. Clearly, ChefMacKay could learn a thing or two about CrowdPleasing meals from DoncasterFryer MartinBilby… who, in a misguided attempt to stampede peripatetic ‘portion sensitive’ American gourmands into his ChipShop, yesterday served up a 97lb. battered Cod&Chips meal… for one.

    [BBC] – Cod and chips world record battered in Doncaster

    “It took some getting out, to be honest. Two of us lifted it out and two people held the tray it went on.” – Martin Bilby, Proprietor ScawsbyFisheries

    http://tinyurl.com/d9jdaru

  5. Being a good chef doesn’t necessarily mean the business case worked. Financing restaurants is a hobby for a few well-to-dos with money to sear.

  6. High profile high priced
    Last Supper last Saturday.
    Doors are closed for good.

  7. The first thing the home ownership pumpers tell you is that if you want to own in Vancouver, you have to cut out the frivolous things like expensive lattes and eating out. Seems to me these guys would have been crunched coming and going. Rent is high because it competes with residential space and customers are broke because and told that the responsible thing is to cook for themselves so they can afford to own.

  8. They can just bulldoze the restaurants and build more condos…

    Call it “Foodie Mews”…

  9. As someone who has negotiated commercial rents I can assure you that optimistic business people are not the best rent negotiators.

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