Kostya Bykhon: “I don’t want to have my own establishment, even at 50…”
Kostya Bykhon , already at twenty-one, is the administrator of the fashionable Odessa establishment “Moloko bar” , a story about friendly service, encouraging regular customers and why they change the serving of dishes after photos of an SMM specialist.
- Why Moloko bar? How did you become a part of this institution?
I was here in the summer, just once, as a visitor. I liked the concept, design, idea. When I quit my previous job, I was not looking for anything, I had no desire to work. And they called me and offered me a job at the Milk Bar. It was a completely random coincidence. And I decided to just try. I very quickly joined the team, and I realized that this is it. It is very easy and comfortable here.
- Moloko bar is not just a cafe, but a trendy, modern and Instagram-friendly establishment with an interesting menu. Is it easy for you, as an administrator, to maintain this image?
It is not easy at all, because every corner must be clean, as they constantly take pictures here. Every dish should be beautifully presented, for that reason. When we are working on our menu, we immediately invite our SMM specialist and if it looks ugly in the photo, then we redo it. My work simply combines all the professions that can be in a cafe, I am an administrator, a cashier, a hostess, a bar manager, and an accountant. Perhaps, just not a cook (smiles). I don’t feel any moral exhaustion here.
- You are the face of the establishment. How do you maintain a positive attitude, despite a busy schedule, so that the client leaves satisfied?
I want the guest to be always satisfied. Whether he is right or wrong, he should be satisfied, even if I do something to myself in the negative. It’s easier for me to treat a guest, but to make amends so that the guest leaves satisfied and comes again.
- You are a creative person, you try yourself in different areas. But why did you decide to develop in the restaurant business?
From the age of three I wanted to be a chef. I went to work as a food technologist, but two years later I realized that I would never be a chef. The kitchen is not mine, I can’t work there, I need to be seen. I need communication, attention. Then I realized that there are many other professions in this area. I went to work as a waiter.
- What are you proud of from the Moloko bar menu?
It’s fried halloumi (cheese). Nothing tastes better than fried halloumi. This is a young Italian cheese made from cow’s milk, similar to young cheese. But when you grill it, it reveals its true taste.
- What would be the first thing you would advise a client who wants something but doesn’t know what?
Waffles with salmon are a win-win option. Waffles are our main product, what we earn from and what is our hallmark. Almost every our visitor orders waffles.
- Do you try all the new items on the menu yourself?
Everything! We have such a policy – when a new employee comes, he must try EVERYTHING! Each member of the staff is a sales employee. Therefore, he must know all the dishes to taste, and tell what they consist of. Friendly service is very popular and we try to stick to it.
- Is there a system of discounts or incentives for regular customers?
We encourage our customers with our beautiful smiles (laughs). We do not have a loyalty system. But, there are promotions, special offers. For our loyal customers, and those who are interested, we can give a flyer with free Prosecco to our other establishment, a milkshake. We have a promotion where a huge c) and a salad (120 UAH) + compote costs only 150 hryvnia.
- How do you see yourself in 10 years?
A year ago, I could not answer your question, but now I already have well-planned goals. In 10 years I will manage at least 3 restaurants. I don’t want to have my own establishment, even at 50.
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