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The Toasted Frog

Submitted by: Jonathan Holth
Business Website:
State: North Dakota
City: Grand Forks

Business Description

The Toasted Frog is an eclectic, innovative, and exciting restaurant and lounge that currently has three locations serving historic downtown districts in three different North Dakota cities.

What makes your business one of the best small businesses in your community?

The Toasted Frog is a small business that was built to last. The restaurant industry is one that is often distracted by new bells and whistles, and recently has been overrun by technological advances. Throughout these changes and distractions, we've focused on the basics - providing excellent food and drinks and exemplary service in a fun, relaxed, inviting environment. We've approached our growth slowly and carefully, opening our first location in 2006, our second in 2010, and our third in 2014. We've always ensured that we're on solid footing before we step out into the next venture. We've also taken the approach of treating our staff as family, offering them unique benefits and opportunities for growth within the company. All of our Executive Chefs and General Managers began with us as line cooks and servers, and grew into their current leadership roles. Of our 25 employees at our original location, 7 of them have been with us since we opened 12 years ago.

The following responses will be considered in judging for a SCORE Award.

How has working with a SCORE mentor helped your business?

When we were getting ready to open, we were young. We had great ideas, but not great implementation strategies. SCORE helped us put pen to paper and really put together a solid business plan. This business plan still serves as our foundational document to this day - 12 years later. Having this business plan was also critical to us securing bank financing. Without SCORE's help, we wouldn't have been able to get off the ground.

Please describe the specific ways that your business has been successful and how it will grow in the next year.

Our revenue has grown each year since we've opened, which has not been easy in a volatile industry. We've built our business on building relationships - with our team, with our customers, and with the community. We've always given back to the communities that have supported us, and that investment has been returned in the development of loyal customers. We've never tried to reinvent the wheel......we've just always focused on making sure our wheel is polished and moving forward. In the next year, we expect another year of revenue growth, and are also exploring some opportunities for licensing our brand and bottling some of our unique sauces.
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