Post Creator: Rosie Bartley

Rare and Well-Done: Revolutionizing the Restaurant Experience with Customized Service with Barry McGowan

By ICR | Podcast

At a time when customization and a personalized experience have become the expectation, the hospitality industry is racing to keep up with that demand. Our guest today understands that deeply, and he’s driving an innovative business model that is way ahead of the curve.   

We’re sitting down with Barry McGowan, the CEO of Fogo de Chão, an international chain of Brazilian Steakhouses. Barry became CEO in 2019, after serving as President from 2013 to 2018. He has over 40 years of experience in the restaurant industry, including more than 10 years with Brinker International, where he served as COO of Macaroni Grill from 2010 to 2013.

Barry also served as President and CEO of Waterloo Restaurants from 2002 to 2010.  With his prior experience, Barry brings a broad range of strategic leadership and operational knowledge to Fogo. He holds a B.S. in Hotel Restaurant Management from the University of North Texas, and a Graduate Certificate of Finance from SMU.


  • Barry’s introduction to the hospitality industry (2:31)
  • Barry describes how the Fogo de Chão opportunity was presented to him (4:05)
  • Fogo’s unique background, history, and approach to service (6:14)
  • Fogo de Chão’s  demographics and how their consumer market has changed over time (8:31)
  • Barry describes Fogo’s menu and value model (10:51)
  • Fogo’s labor model and how it contributes to their service approach (13:17)
  • Barry explains Fogo’s pricing philosophy (15:56)
  • Fogo’s outlook and goals for the next ten years (18:53)
  • The investment partnership between Fogo de Chão and Bain Capital (21:58)
  • Fogo’s international expansion and growth projection (23:28)
  • Barry discusses Fogo’s leadership team (25:03)
  • How Fogo continues to innovate while staying true to their roots (27:08)
  • Barry’s favorite items at Fogo de Chão (28:46)


Barry McGowan on LinkedIn

Fogo de Chão on LinkedIn

Fogo de Chão Website

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ICR Website



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