Philadelphia-based restaurateur Stephen Starr has formed an unlikely partnership with famed New York City restaurateur Keith McNally, and the pair are currently preparing to open their second joint establishment in Miami, called Pastis, writes Jay Cheshes for The Wall Street Journal.
The restaurant is named the same as their first project together, Pastis in New York City. McNally had been working on reopening Pastis for years, but after a life-altering stroke he suffered in 2016, his original investor backed out.
But the restaurateur was having trouble finding somebody willing to invest the $6 million needed to move forward on the project.
“Before my stroke everybody answered my calls; after my stroke nobody did,” he said.
So his daughter set up a coffee meeting between him and Starr in early 2018. He was concerned that the Philadelphia restaurateur would have reservations due to his health, but all he wanted to know was if McNally was passionate about the project.
“I just wanted to make sure his heart was in it,” said Starr.
Within 20 minutes they had a deal, and Starr later told McNally that it was the “most expensive coffee” he had ever had.
Read more about the pair in The Wall Street Journal.
Stephen Starr talks about career in restaurants and his friend Keith McNalley.