For New York-based restaurateur Roy Liebenthal, real estate has driven many of his accomplishments in foodservice. His first successful career was in New York’s real estate industry, and when that market had a downturn in the late ’80s and early ’90s, he jumped into the restaurant business because he was “just looking for something different to do,” he says. As a result, Liebenthal opened Café Tabac in 1991 in the trendy East Village. That restaurant’s success with an eclectic ...

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