By LOU WILIN
A mimosa bar — where patrons make their own cocktails with champagne or Prosecco, orange juice and fruit — is the centerpiece of Saturday brunch at Logan’s Irish Pub in downtown Findlay.
At the brunch, Logan’s also serves General Manager Clayton Acheson’s bloody marys, “famous around all of northwest Ohio for their spiciness and tartness,” co-owner Sean Logan said.
Logan’s brunch also is served on Sundays. The Saturday-Sunday brunch fare is familiar, but with Logan’s twists.
“We’re going more into a full brunch menu with things like steel-cut oatmeal,” Logan said. “We’ve made some special toppings for that.”
“We’ve come up with several recipes for hash. We’ve got a twist on the old corned beef hash,” he said.
Then another twist. Biscuits and gravy are done with corned beef gravy.
“And it is spectacular,” Logan said. “The biscuits that one of our managers, Ryan, makes are just … It’s like being down South, having angel drop biscuits.”
Brunch is served from 9 a.m. to noon Saturdays and Sundays.
St. Patrick’s Day, March 17, is on a Saturday this year. Logan’s will open its doors at 6 a.m. that day with a band playing and tables covered with hats, noisemakers and other swag.
Holiday breakfast fare will include Scotch eggs. Logan’s takes a hard-boiled egg, or perhaps one that’s a little soft and runny on the inside, covers the egg with sausage, then coats the concoction with a breading called panko.
One more step.
“We drop them in the fryer,” Logan said.
The rest is up to the diner: Scotch eggs may be dipped in Logan’s syrup — containing Jameson, a blended Irish whiskey — or homemade mustard sauce.
Logan’s will be open until 2 a.m. on St. Patrick’s Day, and bands will be playing during much of the day.
From the time it opened in late 2010, Logan’s was a huge hit for downtown Findlay, frequently packed with people. But on the purely business side of things, Sean and Karen Logan had some learning to do.
“We didn’t have any understanding about what we were getting ourselves into, to begin with,” Sean Logan said. “We weren’t familiar with the hospitality trades at all. We came out of the medical industry.”
Getting the right knowledgeable group of employees was a key, and “picking their brains,” Karen Logan said.
“Initially we had a fair amount of turnover early on with some of the staff. Trying to get the right people in the right position, that was really hard,” Sean said. “There was a lot of stress for the first several years, getting the right people in here to help us out, who had the right knowledge base.”
It took a few years to iron out lunchtime.
“Trying to get everybody in here and out in 45 minutes for lunch was a huge challenge for us and that took some time to figure it out,” Karen said. “We make everything fresh, so it might take just a little bit longer for meals to come.”
At the end of the day, no business, no matter how charming, can last unless the numbers add up.
“We didn’t know anything about the bookkeeping aspect of it, to begin with,” Sean said. “We had successful businesses in the medical field, but it wasn’t the same kind of accounting issues, if you would, that you run into with this business. This was a lot harder accounting to try to understand.”
The financial learning continues.
“That’s been the hardest, especially when the industry kind of changes and you run into price changes that you weren’t aware of,” he said. “You have to figure out which vendors you’re going to use.”
It was shocking, Karen said, to learn that out of every $1 Logan’s receives, it gets a nickel profit.
“That’s a good profit, if you make a nickel,” Sean said. “It’s usually 2 to 3 cents on the dollar.”
It is a stressful gig, this restaurant business ownership. But it comes with rewards, too, and that is what keeps the Logan’s going.
“What it brings to downtown. Just seeing the people come in and enjoy themselves,” Karen said.
Logan’s Irish Pub could not exist without its employees, Sean said. Those same employees are counting on Sean and Karen Logan to manage the business and keep their paychecks coming.
“There were times I thought, ‘Oh my gosh, this is just not working,'” Sean said. “But you’ve taken these people into your business who are your employees and you develop a responsibility for them.”
There is reward in living up to that, too.
“You want to make sure that they are going to be taken care of. You don’t want to leave them out in the cold,” he said. “So, you keep putting more of yourself in because they also put more of themselves in.”
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