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RH Regional Powerhouses
From left Arturo Gomez Brad Young and Billy Dec
<p>From left: Arturo Gomez, Brad Young and Billy Dec</p>

2014 RH 25: Rockit Ranch Productions

The best and brightest restaurant companies are not just creating one great concept; they&#39;re creating many. See Restaurant Hospitality&#39;s picks for powerful multiconcept companies that not only play it cool, they kick ass. See all concepts &gt;&gt;

Headquarters: Chicago

Annual Sales: $35 million

Units: 6

Key Personnel:
• Billy Dec, c.e.o./founder
• Arturo Gomez, president/partner
• Brad Young, chairman/founder
• Kevin Hickey, partner, director of f&b, executive chef/partner Bottlefork

• Rockit Bar & Grill (a culinary twist on traditional bar and grill fare)
• Rockit Burger Bar (chef-driven cuisine in a party atmosphere)
• Sunda New Asian (showcasing Eastern and Southeastern Asian regional cuisine)
• Bottlefork (a modern American restaurant and bar)
• Ay Chiwowa (Mexican street fare with a selection of 90 tequilas)
• Underground (one of the “sexiest” nightclubs in the world, says Cosmopolitan)

• Duck Inn (new American menu opening in Chicago’s Bridgeport neighborhood in the fall)
• Rockit Bar & Grill (a renovation of the 10-year-old brand due next spring)

WHY IT’S COOL: Rockit Ranch c.e.o. Billy Dec isn’t your average stuffed-shirt company head. We’re pretty sure he was a troublemaker in college and is likely one today, albeit a very smart one who knows how to throw a party that makes his accountants and legions of fans very happy. His restaurants cater to a young, hip crowd where the settings are as important as the food. Perhaps he’s learned the importance of place from his nightclub—Underground—which is a sensory explosion of mad fun. The only exception to all this is Sunda, an Asian restaurant that operates on a culinary level much higher than Rockit’s other restaurants. Sunda is for people who are serious about food and where food comes first. It may be the precursor to more “serious” restaurants down the road. Meanwhile, Rockit Ranch is a party, and Dec is the guy having the most fun.

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