Marc Halperin

Marc Halperin

A classically trained chef who earned his Grand Diplôme d’Études Culinaires at Paris’s prestigious Ecole de Cuisine La Varenne, COO Marc Halperin brings considerable gastronomic expertise and more than two decades of restaurant-consulting and teaching experience to the table. Prior to co-founding CCD, Halperin’s culinary tenure included stints in such celebrated kitchens as those of Taillevent and Maxim’s in Paris, Chez Panisse in Berkeley, California, and the Deer Valley Ski Resort in Park City, Utah, where he served as head pastry chef during the resort's inaugural season. Later, he was a chef instructor at Le Cordon Rouge cooking school in Sausalito, California, and at the California Culinary Academy.

Marc is a professional member of the Research Chefs Association and a member of the San Francisco Professional Food Society, and currently contributes each month to QSR Halperin holds a Bachelor’s degree in biology from Reed College in Portland, Oregon, and a Master’s in music performance from Boston University.

March 2014

For a food that’s only been available in the U.S. on a significant commercial scale since World War II, yogurt has certainly embedded itself into our national culinary consciousness in a hurry. The vast variety of brands, flavors, styles, consistencies, and packaging formats now...

February 2014

Sometime in the late 1990s, I was in Albuquerque with a sweet tooth and a few extra minutes before my flight. Working my way through a busy retail area, I happened upon a hole-in-the-wall pie shop offering what were, at the time, some of the most unusual pastries I’d ever seen or heard of...

January 2014

In the fast-food breakfast world, the carrier has long been king. From McMuffins to Croissan’wiches, burritos to breakfast wraps, flatbreads to breakfast paninis, and now—thank you, Dunkin’ Donuts—even breakfast sandwiches served on a glazed doughnut, fast-food chains...

December 2013

The composition of the modern American meal is pretty well established. The main dish/side dish/beverage/dessert formula hasn’t changed appreciably in eons, and though occasional upstarts surface to challenge this sequence from time to time (think small plates, one-pot meals, sharing menus...

November 2013

When I was growing up in California’s San Joaquin Valley—once commonly known as the nation’s breadbasket—local farmers grew a significant percentage of the fruits and vegetables eaten by people in the rest of the country. They still do. Today, the Vegetable Research...

October 2013

When you consider that one of the world’s most perfect comfort foods—the basic French baguette—is made of nothing more than flour, yeast, salt, and water, it’s a wonder we, as human beings, ever decided to expand on this basic formula.

September 2013

What would you need to do to have a truly sustainable restaurant chain? The answer depends on whom you ask. 

August 2013

I made my own pizza for lunch the other day, and I have to say it was pretty great. Now, in the interest of full disclosure, I admit I’m taking a little license with the language by saying I “made” this pizza. I didn’t roll out or toss the dough, though I did choose my...

July 2013

In its most recent Statistical Abstract of the U.S., the U.S. Census Bureau revealed that per-capita consumption of dairy products grew about 7 percent between 1990 and 2009, from roughly 568 to 607 pounds per person per year. That’s a slow and steady rise, though not the sort of eye-...

June 2013

I have an admission to make: Although I’m not an anthropologist, I have determined definitively, through informal surveys of a few good friends, that the love of aromas found in smoke is locked securely into our genes.

May 2013

Sit down and relax, Mr. and Mrs. Menu Developer. You look tense. Here, have a sip of this blueberry-kale-sun-dried-tomato-açai-green-tea-flaxseed smoothie I’ve just whipped up. It’s loaded with antioxidants, vitamin B, fiber, and lycopene. I think you’ll find it both...

April 2013

For decades, the value proposition in quick-serve circles was pretty easy to capture in a catchphrase: More Is Better. Give those 18–34-year-old guys bigger burgers, burritos, sandwiches, and pizzas; super-size the drinks and sides; pile the toppings high; ladle on the extras, and you had...

March 2013

Menu-development professionals for fast-food chains have probably watched enviously as some of their fast-casual competitors have unveiled salads that are both too elaborate and too expensive to replicate at their concepts.

February 2013

In his landmark 2004 treatise The Paradox of Choice, Swarthmore College professor Barry Schwartz made the case that the vast number of choices available to modern consumers does not offer a heady sense of freedom. Rather, it produces a kind of anxiety, even paralysis, brought on by endless...

January 2013

If demography is indeed destiny (as so many pundits and prognosticators are fond of noting), then fast-food and fast-casual brands are bound to take on an even more pronounced Latin flavor in coming years.

December 2012

If you’re reading this column in a bleary-eyed, early-morning fog, I recommend a piping-hot cup of coffee to kick-start your day. You might even make it a double.

November 2012

Two years ago in this very space, when I last opined on beer and wine, I acknowledged that the very idea of selling alcohol remained remote for some concepts, and far-fetched for many. But the drive for higher margins, coupled with the fact that many adult customers simply see beer and wine as...

October 2012

Say this for modern quick-serve sandwiches: They’re certainly not standing still.

September 2012

They’re jarred awake by an abrasive alarm clock, flustered by the challenge of selecting the right outfit in the dark, annoyed by the prospect of a heavily congested commute, and daunted by the prospect of another day’s slog through the salt mines. Is it any wonder the last thing...

August 2012

The topic I’ve been asked to address this month is kids’ dining.

Note the deliberate use of the word dining. Not kids’ eating, which would be purely utilitarian. Not kids’ scarfing, which can be a more accurate description of how young people approach mealtimes. No...