Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Joseph Settepani, executive pastry chef and owner of Bruno Bakery, located in Staten Island, NY, USA

What's your business, and who are your customers?

We have been a family-run business for the past 40 years. We specialize in traditional Italian pastries and modern French pastries. We serve breakfast and lunch and mouthwatering brunch on the weekends. We are unique in today's day in age for being a family-run operation. We have a very close relationship with our customers, both new and returning. The best way I can describe our customer base is to be very passionate about what they like to eat and indulge in.

Tell us about yourself

One of the many things that got me started in this business was my father. He was a very successful baker and pastry chef not only in the states but also internationally. He really inspired me to want to become a pastry chef, but the thing that motivates me every day is extremely simple I get to make products that put a smile on people faces and be part of a memory for them, whether it is their wedding day or just coming in for a scoop of gelato to pick there day up after a long day. For me, that is the most motivating thing in the world just to see the pure joy in a person after just one bite of my products!

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

When I think back on accomplishments, I think there are defiantly many accolades that I have received, but I think the biggest thing for me was the ability to ride the wave during the height of the pandemic and help out my employees in any way I could because that was a dark time for everybody and to be able to make sure not only my business stayed afloat but my employees to be able to continue there everyday life.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

The hardest thing about being a business owner is the ever-growing social media platform and consistency. Social media has been playing a huge role in our business. It evolves on a daily basis, and to keep up with that is sometimes an added stress. When you add the social media aspect and just the day-to-day work, sometimes people lose consistency in their product. It works for hand and hand with each other. When you market an item, and in a week that same item is different in any aspect, the customers will notice. They can be disappointed and possibly write a review. So consistency is huge in any industry just an example McDonald's when you go to one of there places you know when you order a big mac you understand what you are getting even if you are in the middle of Kansas, you will get the same Big Mac like the one you eat in Brooklyn.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

If you are looking to start a business in any aspect, you want first to believe, believe in your product or what you are doing because if you believe in it, your employees will and your customers will.

Stay educated in your field. You are most likely not the only one of your kind, so you always want to stay ahead of the game, so always educate yourself on what is going on in the world with the latest trends and what you can do to improve your products.

Lastly and the most important health, always make sure you take care of your physical and mental health. Once you open your own business, you can say goodbye to a schedule because you are there 24/7, and to keep up with everything, always find a small part of your day, whether its before you start or after you finish, to take a deep breath and just breath and clear your mind and get ready for what's next.

Is there anything else you'd like to share?

If you truly believe in something, be ready to make sacrifices that will hurt make sacrifices that. At the moment, it doesn't make sense, but it will. With time nothing happens overnight, so be patient, put your foot in the ground and grind.

Make Goals for yourself either every six months or every year, and when you accomplish one, make five more keep challenging yourself to be great to be the best.

Love you all, and I wish everyone the best of luck in their future adventures!!

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solopreneur that you'd like to share, then email; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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