Stephen, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I attended GA Tech for computer science yet didn’t find a passion for programming. I started bartending to pay the bills and loved exceeding guest’s expectations. I actually became ranked 7th in the World as a Flair Bartender in the 90s. I opened my first establishment, East Andrews, in 2002. I grew that to 8 different restaurant/bar/comedy clubs under one roof encompassing 30,000 sq. ft. with 150 employees called Andrew Entertainment District. Later I turned the spaces back over to the property owner at the end of 2015 when the area was supposed to be redeveloped. I started again with Red Phone Booth and Amalfi Pizza in Downtown Atlanta. We now have a Red Phone Booth location open in Nashville and another Amalfi Pizza and Red Phone Booth in the permitting process for Buckhead with talks for locations in Dallas and Biloxi. Additionally, I have a sushi bar under construction in downtown called Saito – Sushi, Steak & Cocktails.
Has it been a smooth road?
Initially, when I first opened, we were severely under funded. I had to make a leadership change early on as bills were behind and were about to lose the business. Within two months of becoming the president of the organization, all bills were caught up and we never looked back.
Tell us more about the business.
Red Phone Booth is a prohibition experience featuring an exclusive cigar program and a turn of the century craft cocktail selection. Patrons will notice the finest attention to detail that provides for exceptional cocktails including 100% freshly squeezed juices such as blood orange, mango, and cranberry, hand chipped double-reverse osmosis ice, garnishes cut to order, a collection of some of the rarest bourbon, whiskey and scotch selections available and over a dozen tinctures, bitters and flavoring agents to help breathe new depth. For guests wanting to enjoy a bite, small plates are available, including fresh seafood, carpaccio, Neapolitan pizza and house made desserts.
At the Red Phone Booth, it is part of our credo to exceed all guest expectations. From the comfort of the seating to the training and knowledge of the staff and the quality of the air, it is all of these things and more that allow for us to deliver an unparalleled experience for our guests.
How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
I believe the continuing drive for authenticity, sustainability, and responsible business practices will dictate much of our industry’s growth. Knowing not only the source of the product but the people behind the business, their beliefs and ideals will become more transparent and more key to the guest’s decision making.
- Cocktails starting at $13
- #1 Seller is our Smoked Old-Fashioned over hand-chipped double reverse osmosis ice for $16
- Traditional Neapolitan Pizzas ranging from $12 – $20
- Address: Red Phone Booth Atlanta
17 Andrew Young International Blvd. NE
- Website: www.redphonebooth.com
- Phone: 404-228-7528
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: @rpbatlanta
- Facebook: @rpbatlanta
- Twitter: @rpbatlanta
- Yelp: https://www.yelp.com/biz/red-phone-booth-atlanta
- Other: https://www.linkedin.com/company/12897018
This article was first published at http://voyageatl.com/interview/meet-stephen-de-haan-red-phone-booth-downtown/