Wassef Haroun, founder of Syrian/Lebannese restaurant Mamnoon, doesn’t rush anything. I spent lunch sounding the depths of brand and culture as they relate to a very successful and fast growing restaurant business. I came away with two realizations: Restaurants serve a commodity differentiated by their brand. And company culture is very hard to propagate beyond the second or third layer of employees.
If you’ve been to Mamnoon you know this isn’t a problem for Wassef but a fascinating concept to consider. Mamnoon and its three related properties are doing very well under his management. We spent the hour peeling the onion on how to extend the strong brand while continuing to grow. All the while I was inhaling jibneh wi za’atar and Wassef was enjoying shorabat adas. My kind of branding exercise.