Introducing Tanuki Raw

Three years have passed since throwing open the doors of Standing Sushi Bar.  It’s been a whirlwind of a ride; setting up branches at Queen Street and Marina Bay, opening in Jakarta, Indonesia, and putting in chairs for people to sit.  Three years of sake, sushi, and Japanese food.  It’s been heartening to see all the support from you all (yes, dear reader, I make the assumption that if you read this blog, you’re a supporter!) and there are exciting plans lined up for Standing Sushi Bar.

I’ve always envisioned Standing Sushi Bar as a modern restaurant serving straightforward tasty Japanese food.  We get a little experimental here and there, but as people would expect, we stick with Japanese.

The idea of a martini paired with oysters and sashimi has been gnawing at me.  There is something delightful in the mix of a crisp, chilled martini cutting through the brine and mineral bite of an oyster, and what’s better at bringing out the pure bright taste of sashimi than a bone dry martini?

I’m excited to introduce Tanuki Raw.  Inspired by the playfulness and affability of Seattle institutions such as the Walrus & Carpenter and Emmett Watson’s Oyster Bar, along with cocktails of yesteryear from ultra-hip Williamsburg’s Maison Premiere and Manhattan’s Mermaid Inn, Tanuki Raw focuses on delivering classic drinks exceptionally well combined with fun inventive food in a welcoming spot.

Tanuki is a mythological Japanese creature.  A playful trickster fond of pranks endowed with shapeshifting ability and a set of really big balls.

We’re opening late next week and I can hardly wait.

Learn more about Tanuki Raw on Facebook
Say hi to @tanukiraw on Twitter

How do I hire staff?

I know, I know… I am always writing about staffing woes.  I’m sure the three readers of this blog are tired of reading about this topic, but I think it’s a reflection of what one of the biggest worries is when it comes to running a restaurant – you’ll always be worried about staffing.

Anyway, Standing Sushi Bar is expanding!  We’re heading to Orchard Road in late September and will be launching a new concept (so not called Standing Sushi Bar but something like xxxx by Standing Sushi Bar).  I’ll definitely be writing more about this later, but first… staffing!

Since I’m opening a new restaurant, I need to hire lots of people.  Service manager, chefs, service crew, bartenders, dishwasher, etc.  This is no easy task, and with the recent government changes, we are maxed out on our quota for foreigners.

I have put job ads out.  Current ones running are on JobStreet and Gumtree.  Certainly I will be putting more up in newspapers and other internet sites.  The JobStreet ad has been running since July 24 and the Gumtree ads I just put up this morning.

In each ad I state that the positions are for Singapore citizens and permanent residents only.

There have been 25 responses so far.  All are non-citizen and non-permanent resident foreigners from the Philippines and Myanmar.  There have been 0 responses from Singapore citizens or permanent residents.

This is what I state about pay and experience in the JobStreet ad:

“We pay based on experience, and we pay well to secure the right talent.
All levels are welcome!
Must be a Singapore citizen or permanent resident”

I also make it a requirement that the applicant speaks English fluently.  This might be limiting the people that apply.  I have no idea.

So, if you have any advice on how I can tweak my ad or how to find a Singapore citizen or permanent resident who would like to be part of this new concept, let me know!

I feel bad receiving CVs from all these foreigners, many who have great experience in F&B, but I can’t hire them.