BLAKE MURRAY | BARE BONES GASTROPUB
Bare Bones Gastropub
La Porte, IN
My name is Blake Murray. I am 30 years old, born in Chicago, moved to NW Indiana when I was 2 years old and been in the region ever since. I have always had a love for food from my parents always cooking and trying new recipes to the traditional stylings of both my grandmother's cooking.
I live in downtown La Porte with my wife Emily and our two dogs, Lewis and Sadie. I have worked in the restaurant industry since I was 14 years old in many different positions. Besides food, music is my biggest passion in life, and I have been playing music for over 15 years, mostly bass guitar, but I dabble in many other instruments.
TELL US ABOUT Bare Bones
We opened Bare Bones Gastropub as an extension of Burn 'Em Brewing, our microbrewery in Michigan City, IN. It is our first run at doing a full scale restaurant with family dining and including not only our beer, but other region beers, wine and cider!
We have an eclectic mix of foods with vegan and vegetarian options. On top of our small everyday menu, we offer new specials every week, rotating desserts, and Sunday brunch specials.
We strive to be innovative in what we are putting out and to always be getting better at what we are doing.
We also have a wide variety of beers, ciders and wine on tap and in cans & bottles.
What inspired you to begin Bare Bones?
My love of food, and wanting to combine that with the great quality of products being produced in our area at this time.
I have been in the industry for all of my adult life and I have always had aims of opening my own someday.
HOW MANY EMPLOYEES DO YOU HAVE?
WHAT IS IN THE INSPIRATION BEHIND YOUR NAME?
We chose Bare Bones as our name and as our model of running. We are trying to go back to basics of cooking, while still trying to be creative and innovative.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT BEING AN ENTREPRENEUR?
The freedom of being my own boss and building a family/team with my employees gives me a great feeling of accomplishment. I love running this crazy pirate ship of a group.
WHAT IS THE MOST DIFFICULT PART ABOUT BEING AN ENTREPRENEUR?
Paperwork and paperwork and paperwork and paperwork....
WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE LOCAL RESTAURANT?
Moser's Austrian Cafe
FAVORITE LOCAL SHOP?
Uptown R&R... I like resale shops and garage sales.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE ENTREPRENEUR RESOURCE?
Definitely utilizing our friends in the industry for advice. More times than not people are willing to share and give advice if you are willing to ask.
WHAT IS THE MOST VALUABLE THING YOU’VE LEARNED BEING AN ENTREPRENEUR?
It's necessary to take care of yourself sometime. You can't be putting every hour of every day into your business or other parts of your life will fall apart.
Chocolate. I freaking love chocolate. Especially dark chocolate.
FUN FACT ABOUT YOU?
I am pretty good at doing voice-overs.
What advice would you give to someone who's just starting their journey as an entrepreneur?
Learn to find a balance of your personal life and work. Being an entrepreneur can be very difficult, but if you are pouring every living second into your business you may lose sight of other things in your life that make you, you.
If you had one day left on earth, what would you do?
I would probably eat the most ridiculous crazy meals I could, and just gorge out.
What's your dream vacation?
Really just going to relax and explore a new culture and place is really what I like.
What business goals do you have for the next 5-10 years?
I aim to have Bare Bones doing more catering and offsite events as well as the restaurant booming. We want to add a secondary kitchen to eventually do some items made in house, sold retail and wholesale. Possibly expand to another area.