Bern's Steak House

"Hi there. How are you?  It's been a long time. Seems like we've come a long way."  The Eagles I know. I know. Yes, it's been a while since I have posted to NeuerSpace. I hope you've missed me.  In the last six weeks, so much has happened, including my 40th birthday and the launch of my FunnelCast blog for The News Funnel.

That said, NeuerSpace is back and will be updated regularly.

Now...on to the topic of the day.

Last week, I ended up visiting Bern's Steakhouse in Tampa, Florida by accident. But I am glad I did.  I was staying in a hotel across the street and my cousin and I decided at the last minute to see if we could get a seat at the bar.

If you're not familiar, Bern's is one of the top-rated steakhouses in the country. In 1996, Wine Spectator ranked it as tied for the country's best steakhouse and in 2009, Rachel Ray rated it as the best restaurant in the country!

The dining room seats 350 people and the upstairs dessert room seats an additional 250.  On a busy night, they will have 1,000 guests and their menu resembles a textbook with a table (columns and rows) outlining all of the steak options including type, size and thickness.

After an amazing meal and dining experience, which was also very reasonably priced, we were asked if we wanted the tour of the kitchen and wine cellar. On the tour, we learned that they grow many of the vegetables in their organic farm, use approximately 300 - 400 pounds of onions on a typical night, and have the largest private wine cellar in the world with 105,000 bottles on premises and another 500,000 in the warehouse. The most expensive bottle sells for $30,000, while the oldest dates back to 1815.

They also make their own ice cream on premises. They have 13 different flavors and the macadamia nut was one of the best scoops of ice cream I've ever had.  The bartender told me they refined the recipe 300 times before settling on this one.

And while I was amazingly impressed with the entire experience, it's what that I learned after I left that really stuck with me. To become a waiter at Bern's, you need to work on the farm for a year to learn about the food and the vegetables before you can begin working in the restaurant.

Bern's does countless things right. If they didn't, they wouldn't be one of the country's top restaurants. Bern's attention to detail and process is one to be emulated. Their dedication to providing amazing service to each customer was obvious to me throughout my experience. Their commitment to training their staff correctly obviously pays off in many ways.

My company, CBRE, does a lot of things right as well. If we didn't, we wouldn't be the largest provider of corporate real estate services in the world. Recently, our team has taken a slightly different approach to training, more similar to Bern's than what is typically seen in our industry. Judging by the first six months of our new process, I would say that the results far exceeded my expectations. If those results continue, I would say we are on to something.

You can't be the best at anything without an unwavering commitment and dedication. I can't wait for my next trip to Bern's. I hope that our clients feel the same way about working with us.

JN