Reflections of a Restaurateur

Andy Marshall of Puckett’s

An exclusive eskca interview with Andy Marshall (founder and CEO) of Puckett’s, which was honored in our:
Tell us your origin story. How did you come to be involved with Puckett’s Grocery & Restaurant?

It started when I bought Puckett’s Grocery in Leiper’s Fork in 1998 because I wanted a different career path from the large grocery business I was previously in. Puckett’s was a small country grocery store with a small kitchen, and it grew from there.

What were the biggest hurdles you encountered in your journey?

We had a slow growth the first few years, and it was honestly a struggle. It took us about three years to build some traction as we built ourselves as a destination for food and music.

What does the future hold for you and Puckett’s Grocery & Restaurant?

Our team is currently working on a fast casual concept called Puckett’s PDQ (Pretty Darn Quick) offering hot meals to-go or for dine-in service. Certainly this last year has taught us that we need to diversify from being so dependent on dine-in only. We will also be opening a Puckett’s in the Nashville Airport late this summer. In all honesty, we are always thinking and challenging ourselves as to what’s next…more to come!

What are your thoughts on the food scene in Nashville?

Our restaurant scene has certainly exploded in the last 5-7 years. There’s more diversity and ethnic options than in the past, which has been exciting to see. I’ve also loved the way locals and independent restaurants have competed in this thriving market.

What’s your best advice for aspiring restaurateurs?

Running your own business can’t be a hobby. You will have to give it all you have and then give some more, but when it gets traction and takes off there is not a greater feeling!

Our readers love recommendations! What’s your favorite dish at Puckett’s Grocery & Restaurant?

I love the Piggy Mac. We mix our slow-smoked pulled pork BBQ with our mac & cheese and toast the dish in an iron skillet.

 

For more exclusive interviews, see our full Reflections of a Restaurateur series