I've always paid more, sometimes much more, than comparable businesses in the area. It's much easier to be demanding, keep expectations high, hire and fire, when you're offering a better wage.
Certainly, it can be more difficult to do when opening but I've found, after opening many places from inexpensive cafes to high-end white tablecloth restaurants, that it has served me best--even at the beginning. I hire fewer people at the outset, pay more, demand a LOT. When the place gets going I add to staff judiciously, and I count on the staff I've had from the beginning to help get the new hire(s) assimilated. This approach has worked for me best, and for others for whom I've consulted. I have far fewer employee 'problems' (having to babysit employees, employee theft, turnover, et. al.) than my colleagues that complain about their staffs frequently.
One other somewhat related thing: However you choose to be called by your staff (Miss, Ms, Mrs, Chef, by your first name), cultivate an appropriate employer-employee 'distance'. It allows being demanding to work better, especially in an informal setting where it can be tempting for employees who don't feel the proper separation of the relationship to slack. Don't engage in personal info exchanges. Don't socialize with your staff outside of your establishment. If you socialize at your place, maintain the role of the benefactor, not an equal. A firm--but polite, polite--but demanding, friendly--but with a distance befitting the head honcho, will serve you well.
Best of luck.