Fast-casual Vapiano is popular for its fine-dining feel.
George Green: Fast-Casual Expert
I am often asked what I think are the hottest or best fast-casual concepts. I think it’s important to tackle that question from the consumer perspective first. Like many others in the industry, I love checking out the competition. Over the last several years, many colleagues and I have made a point...
Michael Lippert of Captain D’s says executives can fix costly mistakes.
Executive Insights
Michael Lippert is the newly appointed executive vice president of operations for Captain D’s Seafood Kitchen. As an industry veteran he knows that the time a leader initially joins an organization is exceptionally crucial to his success there. But it’s also the point when many basic mistakes are...
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Roy Bergold shares the 2011 business shakeups he wants and expects to see.
Roy Bergold: Tales from McDonald’s
It’s the New Year, and I would like to expound on some ideas I have for 2011, as well as look at some of the areas that may—or definitely will—affect the way we do business in the coming year. Welcome to Roy’s World. First up, some ideas on how I think things should go. The first thing we are going...
The business financing climate is getting sunnier with new lending models.
Growth
It’s no secret that running a restaurant is a risky business. The fact that many restaurants will ultimately fail early in their existence is not lost on most entrepreneurs, and yet they carry on anyway in hopes that their restaurant dreams can be made true.   The risk inherent to opening a...
Promotions
In 2007, Togo’s, a 242-unit, 40-year-old West Coast sandwich chain, was purchased by San Francisco equity firm Mainsail Partners, which quickly saw a problem. “Throughout the system there were six logos on the exterior signage,” says Renae Scott, vice president of branding and marketing for Togo’s...
Denise Lee Yohn sets certain standards brands must meet for social media.
Denise Lee Yohn: QSR’s Marketing Guru
As a child I was a geek who desperately wanted to be popular. In my quest to be cool, I wanted to copy the popular kids’ rebellious behaviors like dying my hair and going coatless in the dead of winter. When I expressed these aspirations to my mother, she admonished me by saying, “Just because...
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Businesses can thrive by planning strategically for the future.
Growth
After running nuclear reactors for submarines, Loren Goodridge was ready to be his own boss. Navy alum Goodridge became a Subway franchisee in 1992, and has since been recognized for his strategic planning skills by Subway CEO Fred DeLuca and grown his franchise company to 20 units. Armed with...
Read Full Story // read more about: Subway, Franchising
Energy Kitchen offers healthy dishes like bison and ostrich burgers.
Emerging Concepts
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To encourage return visits, a fast-casual restaurant that serves only healthy food must make taste paramount, says Anthony Leone, founder of Energy Kitchen. That’s why at Energy Kitchen, the menu includes nontraditional ingredients like bison and ostrich. “We work very hard on recipes,” Leone says...
Quick service concepts with breakfast focus offer more menu items for lunch day part.
Taking a Bite Out of Lunch
As the only daypart with marked growth in the limited-service industry, the breakfast business is hot. It seems that every week brings more news of morning daypart expansion from this or that brand. Faced with this increased competition, those brands already built around coffee, bagels, doughnuts,...
Fast food restaurant in Austin holds city wide 5k race to raise funds for charity.
Hot to Trot
While families around the U.S. gather this year for Thanksgiving Day dinner, a casual game of touch football, and the annual parade, some Austin, Texas, residents will sport their running gear for the annual ThunderCloud Subs Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot. Since its inception in 1991, the 5K...
Quick service operators can make money through market based pricing strategies.
The Cost of Outdated Pricing Strategies: Part 3
Editor’s Note: This is the third in a series on pricing strategies within the quick-service restaurant industry. Click here to read part one, and here to read part two. Hello again QSR readers! Before we dig into another alternative pricing strategy, we want to take a moment to look back at where...
Fast food kitchens must protect restaurants against food borne illness.
How to Improve Your Food Safety
Stories surrounding food-borne illness outbreaks in national quick-service restaurant chains have become very common, with many national brands having suffered at least one major food-borne illness outbreak. Whether the cause of the outbreak is due to contaminated food or unclean surfaces, food...
Quick serve chicken chain rolls out coffee that benefits bean growers.
Morning Jolt
Chick-fil-A joined the breakfast innovation bandwagon with a renewed commitment to offering better coffee. And the chicken chain took the initiative one step further by partnering with a network of specialty coffee farmers in Central America known as THRIVE. The handpicked, proprietary coffee blend...
Quick service restaurant executives could take notes from transportation startup Uber.
How to Be the Uber of Fast Food
Q: Many fast-food restaurants are beefing up their mobile capabilities. What is the best way to tap into this trend? A: Getting in on the mobile ordering—or mobile payment or mobile marketing—trend shouldn’t be our objective. Instead, we should ask, “How can we use mobile technology to disrupt our...
Premium quick service restaurant chain dishes out upscale and local foods.
Ones To Watch: Modmarket
In 2008, Anthony Pigliacampo and Rob McColgan were two young professionals looking for a place to have a healthy lunch on a regular basis. When they couldn’t find one, the pair decided to create one. They pooled their knowledge to create Modmarket. “We felt very strongly that there needed to be...