How I Make Money Eating Out At Upscale Restaurants (Networking)

Crowd At at bar

I didn’t realize it until about 6 months ago, but going out to fancy restaurants and upscale bar lounges actually has made me more money than I’ve spent there.

After reading the title of this article, you’re probably wondering how in the world I actually make money spending big bucks eating out at the fanciest restaurants and upscale bar lounges. Well, if you’re thinking it’s because I go there to review the food, it’s not that. (However, that is another way to make money eating at fancy restaurants. I’ll do a separate blog piece in the future.)

So, how do I make money going out to a fancy steak house? Honestly, I just started doing this a few months ago only. I’m a 35 year old business owner, but I wish I would have figured this out earlier in my entrepreneur years. By going out, and simply talking to people next to me at the bar, even people at other tables around, I’ve been able to gather so many great contacts and by accident, generated a ton of new business for my service business (Click here to check it out.)

It’s networking with a unique twist.

So, I’m going to do a step by step tutorial for you below to follow along.

Picking the best place to eat. (The more upscale, the better for several reasons.)

Growing up poor as a kid and teen, I could never imagine spending a certain amount for a meal. Shoot, even in my mid-twenties when I was building my business, I was still trying not to overspend eating out. However, oddly enough in the last few months, I randomly came across a unique situation. I would realize that every time I would start to go out to fancier places, two things would start to happen:

1.) I would feel good about myself and it kept reminding me that I deserve to enjoy myself. (I would tell myself, “Alex, you belong here”.) Quality food, quality experience, quality everything. I felt better when I was at these places.

2.) The next important thing, I found myself next to other fellow entrepreneurs and movers & shakers in the town I was in. A high ranking lawyer to my left, a real-estate investor and broker to my right, that I happened to meet by accident.

Whether I was with a friend or even going out alone to eat, I would start to force myself to talk to as many people there as possible. Now, it wasn’t just business reasons only, that was an added bonus to the other benefits of doing this type of networking.

I was very shy growing up – terribly shy. The older I got, I realized how important it was to step out of my comfort zone. The last few months, I would go up to people that had a really nice suit. If I saw someone ordered a plate with amazing looking food, I would go up and ask them what they ordered and how the food was? Well, one thing leads to another, a great conversation happens. During the conversation, you just possibly met a new friend or even got future business for yourself.

By me doing this the last few months, I’ve exploded my business in sales and even more cool, I’ve met some great new friends and resources. People sitting next to me at a fancy bar, people sitting at the table next to me at an expensive fish and steak house etc.

What compelled me to write this article, is that so many entrepreneurs miss out on all the possible networking they can add to their life daily. The person next to you may be of value. However, again, don’t focus on just trying to promote your business to them. What you need to do, is just communicate and mingle with people. Don’t bring up your business until the end, or, if they bring up what you do for a living.

If the conversation is going well, ask them as much about their life by being genuine and attentive.

See if this person can be a new friend even.

At the end of each interaction, connect with them on LinkedIn or Facebook. Also, leave your card with them and take their card. At the end of the night, send them an email saying it was nice meeting them. End the email with your name and business info. (However, do NOT push your business. Do NOT try to sell them on anything. Just mingle and connect, the rest will happen.)

The last two times I’ve gone out, I spent over $130 each time I went out. And, from the networking I made the first night I went out, I received over $400+ in business.

(The people I met the second time out, I haven’t received any sales from I yet, but, it doesn’t matter – they have my info for the future. The people I’ve met, took down my website info in their phone contacts. The website I gave them was

As I said in a previous article, I mentioned how most American business owners are “network deficient”. People aren’t networking as much anymore, especially after COVID. People forgot how important it is to have a rolodex of solid contacts.

After 1 year of aggressive networking, you will build a large, powerful and unexpected amount of new solid contacts.

I also started doing this when I go flying. I force myself to spend more to sit in first class. Even though I had a slow month of business, I still pay extra to sit in first class. It’s a mindset I want to be in. Not just how I feel in first class, but again, the people sitting next to you.

Go out. Spend a lot on yourself. Indulge. Talk to the bartender. Talk to the person next to you. Talk to the people at the table across the room. Just like in fishing, the more you cast (bait and hook) out into the water, the more chances you’ll get some bites.

Buon Apetite.

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