People ask me this question all the time.
Why a restaurant and why Sessions?
Well that answer can be long and complicated and I figured I mise well answer it once and for all.
The quick answer is, my father always told me to see what other people are doing well, and figure out how to do something similar and make it your own. So this is what I did at Sessions.
My other answer is that I have a passion for people. Owning a restaurant gives me the opportunity to be around people all day everyday on a regular basis. I LOVE THIS!
I grew up in Irvine, Woodbridge to be exact, which is why we are opening a store there. I lived there until I was about 18. I then moved to Downtown HB, which is why we have a store there, and then at 21 I moved to Newport, which (you guessed it!) is why we opened our first store in Newport.
Through my college years I got pretty good at throwing events and parties and eventually started to make a living doing that. Around my senior year of college I started a company called the Social Group where we specialized in the marketing and promotions of bars, restuarants and nightclubs. I helped open Sutra Lounge, Tentations, The Lodge, Code, and tons of other venues that you may have heard of.
The Social Group continued to grow from a small business into a bigger one. As this happened I needed to make some decisions. As glamorous as my job was, my career was full of a lot of things that I thought would fill me up, but in fact only left me empty. I wanted more.
At this point in my life I was pretty lost but looking for an adventure. Well an adventure is what I had!
I sold my share of The Social Group and went to EMT school. Went from the top, back to min wage, and then next thing you know I was sitting in the back of an ambulance. THIS would surely fill me up!
After working as an EMT for a while, I went to paramedic school and eventually became a paramedic. Man I thought being an EMT was cool, THIS was way cooler!
I was finally doing something cool, outside of the box, and working hard trying to become a fireman.
Then I started dating a girl named Summer, who is now my wife.
While working on the ambulance I was working on a business plan for what is now Sessions. I worked on the plan for several years and kept coming home telling my wife about this crazy idea of a sandwich restaurant. One day she told me "you know if you don't just go do it, you're gunna be talking about this until your 50 and still never do it."
That is when my life changed. Every other project stopped, fire dept interviews, paramedic jobs, etc. EVERYTHING stopped.
I went 100% in on Sessions West Coast Deli. To bring my comments at the beginning of this back around. I have watched sandwich restaurant around the country grow into what is one of the biggest segments in the food industry. But they are all from the east coast, and if they weren't they for sure were not So Cal surf culture.
I decided to make something that was all mine, a spot for me to go hang out at, eat at, have friends hang out at.
I teamed up with an old friend Beckham Thomas, and Beckham brought in Max Schlutz who is now our Executive Chef.
This journey has been nothing short of a dream and I'm so grateful to be on it.
If you happened to read all of the way to the bottom of this, thank you. Your support means the world to me.