I’ve got to hand it to Jay Manno, owner of the relatively new restaurant, Frankie Primo’s. As I was riding down Chippewa last evening, I had to pull over to check out the bustling activity at the Franklin Street corner. Restaurant management had cleverly moved the hostess station out onto the sidewalk, which completely changed the entire dynamic of the restaurant. Instead of simply waiting for customers to come inside, people were being greeted as they were walking down the sidewalk. The ingenious move was a breath of fresh air, especially for Chippewa. This is something that I would expect to see in NYC, but for some reason the simple concept has not made its way to Buffalo until now.
Not only was the hostess stand fully attended, just inside the patio gateway there were cocktail servers prepared to accommodate anyone who walked in. I asked Jay about the formidable tactics that were being implemented and he explained that while there was a Frankie Primo’s celebration underway, he fully intended to keep the momentum rolling. He said that the positioning of the hostess stand was ideal for attracting customers. It also serves to answer people’s questions before they even enter the restaurant. What type of food? Full bar? Table availability? That sort of thing. The stand also helped to anchor the offshoot patios and create a smooth flow around the courtyard.
I love seeing businesses mix it up in this way. It was the last thing that I expected to see on Chippewa, and it was the most impressive take-away at the same time. “We put all of these flower containers out along the street too,” Jay said [pointing]. “They look great and change the look of the street. We did the same thing on the other corner at SoHo (his other restaurant). Take a look at this intersection now… look at all of the activity. This is a completely different Chippewa.”
I had to agree with Jay that sometimes it’s the simplest of maneuvers that can turn the tide of a street. Hopefully this game changing momentum will continue. Way to be proactive.
Frankie Primo’s | 51 W Chippewa Street | Buffalo, New York | (716) 855-3739 | Facebook