MANCHESTER — Ben and Clark Graves have been golfing buddies for years.
And the adult father-son duo talk every day, usually multiple times..
“We’ve always had a pretty solid relationship,” said Manchester resident Clark Graves, 57.
Now, they have teamed up to run their first restaurant, buying the Gauchos Churrascaria Brazilian Steakhouse at 62 Lowell St.
“We wanted to work together on something,” said Ben Graves, 31. “We have a close relationship. We came across the restaurant, which seemed like a good opportunity.”
This will be the first restaurant either has managed.
The Graves plan to keep the name while making improvements, including with the food quality and website as well as adding items, such as Brazilian cheese bread.
“We’re really about making the customer experience the best it possibly can be,” said the younger Graves, who lives in Merrimack.
Ben was a restaurant server in his younger years and picked up tips from a family friend who owned a restaurant chain.
Growing up, Ben helped his dad, who owned Peterborough Chrysler for much of the 1990s.
“I got the entrepreneurial bug when I worked around his dealership,” the son said.
He also worked at a call center and values quality customer service.
Clark Graves said they weren’t necessarily aiming on operating an eatery.
“I feel like I know nothing about restaurants or running restaurants, but I have quite a bit of business experience,” he said. “We’re going through this from top to bottom and will make everything better.”
Main course items, including chicken, beef and salmon, are brought right to customers’ tables by cooks known as “gauchos.”
Jose Nieves, who had owned the restaurants for more than 15 years, still owns the Gauchos restaurant in Nashua, according to the younger Graves.
A crepes shop Nieves opened in vacant space at the Manchester restaurant location had closed prior to the Graves buying the restaurant and leasing the space.
Nieves couldn’t be reached for comment Wednesday.