Diane Pham

Dos Toros' Leo and Oliver Kremer Explain Why Businesses Need to Put Values Before Growth and Expand at Their Own Pace

by , 03/19/14

It’s a known statistic that more than 90% of restaurants fail within their first year of operation. But what is it about the other 10% that keeps them afloat? As Leo and Oliver Kremer, the founders of NYC’s Dos Toros will tell you, it’s not only about providing a delicious product, but it’s about making the most of what you have and keeping true to your vision. Dos Toros first opened in 2009, and, by chance, received a review by the New York Times that brought them a flurry of new customers and critical acclaim. Just a few months after that, their customer base had grown so rapidly that they started to think about opening a second location. But it wasn’t as easy as just scouting a new spot. Leo and Oliver knew that by opening a new location, they’d also be putting half of their brand at risk. “The risks of growing too quickly are greater than the risks of growing too slowly,” says Leo. “If you grow too quickly, the whole thing will die.” The duo decided that they would only expand as fast as they could do it well, and this meant keeping their core values close and making sure that these ideals were apparent in each and every new store they would open. With this smart and admirable business plan, today the Kremer brothers count three locations in Manhattan and one restaurant in Brooklyn. So, their best piece of advice for small business entrepreneurs? Expand at your own pace.

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Dos Toros started with Leo and Oliver Kremer, two brothers from the San Francisco Bay Area. Enjoying the fruits of California’s cultural diversity, the guys grew up dining at their local taqueria “eight days a week.” But when they moved to NYC, they saw a massive void when it came restaurants serving up the Mexican food that kept them satisfied during their youth. And thus the duo went about opening their own taqueria to match their tastes. “Our focus on food is obsessive,” they write on their site. “We’ve spent countless hours perfecting our recipes. We source high quality ingredients, because fresh and local tastes better. And we promise that the artisan who puts it all together, in front of your eyes, shares our passion for excellence.”

Each of their shops also feature custom light fixtures by local designers, reclaimed wood countertops, on-site composting, and a short and sweet menu that promises to leave you dreaming about their food for days.

+ Dos Toros

This post is sponsored by American Express.

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