Case Studies

Don Potvin – Incredible Pizza Franchise Group

Est. reading time: 5 mins

Things were looking good for Rick and Cheryl Barsness in March 2020. The couple was celebrating the success of their Incredible Pizza Co., founded in 2001, and the opening of a new restaurant in Shawnee, Kansas. As Don Potvin, who’s worked with the couple since 2004, notes, these are no ordinary pizza joints. They are […]

Denis Neville – CoreFX Ingredients

Est. reading time: 5 mins

On an otherwise quiet December Sunday in 2020, an errant spark amongst some wires and cables flared into an electrical fire that decimated CoreFX Ingredients’ headquarters in downtown Chicago—including the company’s Customer Innovation Center. Opened just three years earlier in 2017—just a little over a year after Denis Neville launched the food ingredients manufacturer—the 5,000-square-foot […]

Chad Yakobson – Crooked Stave

Est. reading time: 4 mins

When Chad Yakobson founded Crooked Stave, he wasn’t just trying to make good beer. He was trying to prove something. While most brewers had spent decades removing Brettanomyces in beer, he’d spent years studying how to use the yeast species. As laid out in his master’s thesis, he concluded that when left in, Brettanomyces creates […]

David Greengold – Juan’s Flying Burrito

Est. reading time: 4 mins

Imagine walking down New Orleans’ Magazine Street, the first five blocks of which were created in 1788. A stone’s throw from the Mississippi river, the street is now six miles long and lined with quaint shops occupying buildings constructed in the 1850s. Restaurants are abundant, but one serves up both culinary and musical delights: Juan’s […]

Aaron Ludwig – Jack Brown’s

Est. reading time: 5 mins

Erik Estrada apparently is cool with the concept of his circa-1970s TV show inspiring a burger at a slowly but steadily growing chain of very basic bars. Recently he chanced upon a Jack Brown’s in rural Tennessee and enjoyed a so-called Ponch burger named after his character in “CHiPs,” Patrolman Francis Poncherello. That’s a toasted […]

Stephen Smith – Turlock Fruit

Est. reading time: 4 mins

Picking from the produce section of a grocery store is often a gamble, especially if fruit is concealed by peels or rinds. As the co-owner of Turlock Fruit, Stephen Smith hates it when someone buys a melon only to cut it open and find pale, unripe flesh, which is common with cantaloupe and honeydew melon. […]

Tyler Klick – Redwood Empire Vineyard Management

Est. reading time: 4 mins

When gophers munch on grapevine roots and trunks at the California properties entrusted to Redwood Empire Vineyard Management, co-owner and viticulturist Tyler Klick doesn’t resort to poisons that pose a secondary threat to predators. Instead, he sets up nesting boxes for barn owls. One of those predators might sink its talons into a couple thousand […]

Brian Armstrong – Calgary Sports and Entertainment Corp.

Est. reading time: 5 mins

While Brian Armstrong acknowledges he’s no athlete, he can empathize with one of the most hardnosed among them. That man: Darryl Sutter, the coach of the National Hockey League team that falls under the ownership of the Calgary Sports and Entertainment Corp., which employs Armstrong as executive chef. Both spend much of their working lives […]

Al Murphy – Mother Murphy’s Flavors

Est. reading time: 4 mins

It’s that whiff of vanilla, that cherry tartness, or the pucker of lemon you remember from candy as a kid. Or it’s that taste of peanut butter you enjoy in your cocktail-hour whiskey. “We make memories through flavors,” says Al Murphy. “Our flavors are part of everyday life experience—think back to childhood and those impressions.” […]

Joan Daleo – Ole Tyme Produce

Est. reading time: 4 mins

Not everyone dreams of taking over their family business. Joan Daleo, however, is thrilled to be at the helm of the company her parents started in 1973. Since becoming president of Ole Tyme Produce in 2001, she’s grown it into the largest woman-owned, fresh food distributor in Missouri. The St. Charles-based company distributes locally grown […]

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