Regional barbecue menu options give customers flavors of the community.
Menu Innovations
A great way to start an argument is to talk about America’s best barbecue. It’s a dispute that won’t be resolved. “A lot depends on where you were raised, because you get an emotional allegiance to one particular type of barbecue,” says Peter Reinhart, chef on assignment in the College of Culinary...
Uncle Maddio's applied the Chipotle fast casual model to a pizza franchise.
Emerging Concepts
Matt Andrew is no stranger to the limited-service world. He spent eight years on the management team at Moe’s Southwest Grill, giving him the background necessary to create Uncle Maddio’s Pizza Joint. But there was one major hurdle to overcome before opening his own quick-serve pizza restaurant. “...
Chick-fil-A is the top quick service brand in customer experience.
In the Store
The quick-service industry is feeding consumers an experience worth an encore—in some cases, at least. According to a recent study by customer experience firm Temkin Group, the industry ranked second among 19 for highest customer-experience ratings. In addition, the industry’s average rating jumped...
Catering programs give quick serve operators a strong competitive edge.
Outside Insights
As consumer markets continue to converge, catering remains an important topic of discussion in the boardrooms of our community’s restaurant chains. Historically, catering was left to the “caterers” who focused on filling off-premise consumer demand, while restaurateurs focused on the in-store...
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Mobile wallet platforms give fast food restaurants engaging new marketing tool.
Outside Insights
It is no secret that mobile wallets are trending upward for the foreseeable future. According to a recent report by Transparency Market Research, the global mobile wallet market is forecasted to reach $1,602.4 billion in five years, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 30.7 percent...
Smashburger cofounder explains craft beer and burger pairing at Chicago event.
Industry News
Inside Smashburger’s newest Chicago-area restaurant, a hip-looking joint in the city’s trendy Lincoln Park neighborhood, company founder and chief concept officer Tom Ryan holds up the brand’s Windy City Burger as if it’s Lord Stanley’s Cup. Packed with layers of melted Cheddar cheese, haystack...
Industry News
To say Kona Ice is growing quickly would be an understatement. In the first six months of 2013 alone, the shaved ice concept has expanded from 305 trucks on the road to 409—opening a whopping 100 trucks in 100 days, says president and Kona Ice founder Tony Lamb. “We’ve been building like crazy all...
Global flavors inspire new barbecue menu options at quick serve restaurants.
Marc Halperin: Resident F&B Expert
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. There’s just something about meat and fire. You can bake, broil, poach, pan-fry...
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 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...
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...
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,...
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...
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...
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...