Restaurant Startup is a CNBC original program where promising chefs pitch their restaurant concepts to seasoned restaurateurs Joe Bastianich and Tim Lowe. In recent episodes they have been joined by guest investor Elizabeth Blau, a Las Vegas culinary mogul.

Each episode features two competing teams who present their business plans and food innovations to the panel of investors, who evaluate the restaurant’s potential. The investors choose their favorite idea and market test it by giving the entrepreneurs a $7,500 budget and access to an existing restaurant for 36 hours to stage their launch. The team must create a menu, branding, advertising, restaurant decor and serve their food to the public in a fast-paced pressure test. During their preparation they are evaluated and guided by culinary consultant Antonia Lofaso.

If the mock-up restaurant gets a favorable reaction from the public, and if Joe, Tim, or Elizabeth believe there is a profitable business plan, they will offer to invest their own money and become equity partners in the business. The investors sometimes make competing offers to the entrepreneurs and sometimes invest as a team.



CNBC: New Episodes and Reruns

New episodes and reruns of Restaurant Startup air on Wednesdays at 10:00 ET/PT on CNBC. Check your local listings for details. You can watch a selection of the latest episodes on the CNBC website.

DIRECTV: Select Episodes

If you’re a subscriber to DIRECTV you can watch the latest episodes ON Demand and on any device.