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  • Writer's pictureCOGS-Well Team

Customer Success - Mamahuhu

Updated: Aug 15, 2022


Mamahuhu opened in the Inner Richmond neighborhood of San Francisco in January 2020. The restaurant was instantly a hit. The space is a modern fast-casual setup with counter-service and a cozy 40-set dining room. The business also has a large focus on take-out and delivery.

Mamahuhu features classic, Chinese-American food at affordable prices, using sustainably-sourced products. They prepare their food from scratch and focus on fresh, healthy ingredients, sourcing as much local and organic produce as possible. Mamahuhu’s menu offerings are lighter, vegetable-forward expressions of familiar flavors and dishes the team grew up loving and aims to carry forward today.

The Opportunity:

The team at Mamahuhu, comprised of partners Brandon Jew, Ben Moore, Anmao Sun, and Director of Kitchen Operations Noah Kopito, plans on adding more restaurants in years to come. They went looking for an inventory system that would help them manage their expansion. They wanted a system that would help them control their inventory, evaluate their recipes, manage their menu, and report on theoretical costs and variances.

“We strongly believe that tracking theoretical costs is essential. Especially when you are using seasonal, largely organic ingredients where fluctuating prices are the norm. The added insight into food cost in real-time is critical.” Noah Kopito, Director of Kitchen Operations, All Parts Considered.

The Solution:

The restaurant was utilizing Square for point of sale, Plate IQ for invoice automation, and QuickBooks as an accounting system. The team required an inventory system that would interface with each of their other systems.

Noah looked at several inventory systems and selected COGS-Well. He was impressed that, unlike the other competitors, instead of highlighting numerous features, COGS-Well highlighted its fast installation and ease of ongoing use as being most important.

“All of the systems I looked at offered pretty much the same feature sets - features that I didn’t think I would need. Bill Lindsey from COGS-Well stressed that their strength came from improvements to the basic approach of managing inventory. They have great ideas about how to reduce the amount of set up time and maintenance time.” Noah Kopito, Director of Kitchen Operations.

The Results:

At the end of February of 2020, Mamahuhu implemented COGS+, COGS-Well’s inventory control, recipe management, and food and beverage cost analysis system. In several days, their system was installed and up and running. At the start of March, Mamahuhu recorded its first inventory on-hand count and valuation.

Mamahuhu also immediately began tracking the inventory item purchase detail from their invoices. This information was automatically imported into COGS-Well via an interface with Plate IQ.

Mamahuhu tracks inventory item usage, with cost trends, for each inventory item. They have also built recipes for 90% of their menu items and are using the recipe modeling features to evaluate costs and pricing. Their sales mix is imported from their Square POS to incorporate a menu item’s popularity into their menu item cost and profit evaluation.

“We use the “Item Cost Trends” chart to analyze our recipes. We can look at the trends for the overall recipe item, as well as for each ingredient in the recipe.” Noah Kopito.

Next Steps:

Mamahuhu plans to keep fine-tuning their recipes. They soon will start comparing their theoretical costs and ingredient usage to their actual costs and ingredient usage, to isolate variances. The variances will help them isolate possible unknown spoilage, poor yields, or portioning issues.

Mamahuhu also plans to start using COGS-Well's “Menu Engineering” report to help them evaluate the performance of their menu items. This report utilizes menu item costs, pricing, and popularity to help optimize profits.

Mamahuhu will utilize the ordering features in COGS-Well. Suggested orders can be calculated, and then sent to vendors. They can also compare their invoices to the corresponding orders to ensure consistency.

"Learning the COGS-Well system takes time, but once I’ve understood a new concept in the system, it is very intuitive to use. The support that COGS-Well has provided me has been excellent. The entire team at COGS-Well is very dedicated to our success.” Noah Kopito, Director of Operations.

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