If you want to find the owner of a restaurant, the simplest way is to ask someone who works at the restaurant. Most of the time, it shouldn't be difficult to reach the owner. Sometimes, however, you may run into roadblocks. Customers who have a complaint or a compliment may want to directly speak to a restaurant owner but can't get past a receptionist or manager. With a little detective work you may be able to track down the owner.

Things You Will Need
  • Internet access

  • phone

Access your state’s business registration search on the Internet. Some states register businesses through the Secretary of State, some through the state’s Department of Commerce, some through the state Department of Consumer Affairs, and some through the state Department of Labor. (Some states, such as New Jersey, do not have an online business registration search.)

Enter the name of the restaurant whose owner you wish to find in the search field. Press “search”.

A list of businesses will come on the screen with that name. Select the restaurant that you want to investigate and click on it. The information about the restaurant’s owner will appear. Some "owners" are, in fact, corporations, so in these cases this strategy will not provide you with an individual owner's name.

Other Search Methods

Search for owner information on search engines that target businesses, such as Zoominfo.com or Ziggs.com, or search on social networks that target businesses, like LinkedIn.com. You can often find restaurant owner information on these sites, or on the restaurant's website itself.

Check the Better Business Bureau's Web site. The BBB maintains reports and information on many businesses, even if the business does not have BBB membership. Check the date that the BBB filed the information about the restaurant, as the information on the BBB website may not always show up-to-date information.

Contact the local authorities that certify the restaurant. Call the municipality zoning commission, the municipality Department of Health, the state Department of Health, or the municipality’s licensing board. If a private owner owns the restaurant, she must apply for these certifications and licenses. If a corporation owns the restaurant, it will prove more difficult to track down an owner.