Leading Canadian businessman and philanthropist David Aisenstat has spent a lifetime in the restaurant business and his passion for it shows. In addition to being the owner and CEO of The Keg Steakhouse & Bar, Canada’s premier casual dining brand, his restaurant collection includes Hy’s Steakhouse & Cocktail Bar, Ki modern japanese + bar, The Shore Club, and Gotham Steakhouse & Cocktail Bar.
In a business well known for its unusually high turnover of both management and staff, David has been able to recognize and retain talented people. In fact, The Keg has been named as one of Canada’s 50 Best Employers by ROB Magazine for the last 7 years, a feat that is especially impressive for a restaurant company. Management teams and executives within David’s restaurants, foster a unique culture that, in turn, enhances the experience of the millions of guests who visit his restaurants each year.
David has a passion for art and design that is evident in the look and feel of his restaurants. From the stunning urban patios in downtown Keg locations in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto and Montreal, to the cutting edge design of KI, David’s flair for art and design is evident. This keen interest is highlighted in his role as Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Vancouver Art Gallery, one of Canada’s most highly regarded cultural institutions.
A key element in all of David’s endeavours is a strong focus on giving back. This is most clearly evident in The Keg Spirit Foundation, which was established in 2001 to commemorate The Keg’s 30th anniversary. The Foundation focuses on helping charitable organizations that develop and mentor young people – something that The Keg has long been successful at with thousands of young staff every year. The $4 million distributed since The Keg Spirit Foundation’s inception is a source of great pride for David and to all those involved with the Foundation. Most importantly, the Foundation has been an inspiration for thousands of staff to reach beyond themselves and give back to those less fortunate both in their communities and around the world.