From mid-June through July, Pasta Connection is expanding its menu with three new entree features—Chicken Pasta Caesar Salad, Anitpasta Salad and Garden Pasta Salad, each featuring the brand's signature corkscrew Cavatappi pasta and distinctive, exotic flavors. The meals are being test marketed in 15 states. The Pasta Connection brand is located inside select Arby's locations.
The new pasta salads are the influence of U.S. Master Chef Tony Seta, Triarc Restaurant Group's vice president of menu and development. Chef Seta, who joined TRG in June 1999, is one of only 57 Master Chefs in the country and the only Master Chef currently working within the quick-service industry.
"Today's customers are much more culturally exposed in their dining experience and, therefore, expectations for taste and flavor have increased," said Seta. "We are taking the next steps in identifying what our customers want by experimenting with unique ingredients such as savory meats, mouthwatering Italian cheeses, and distinctive spices that satisfy a more discriminating adult palate."
The Chicken Pasta Caesar Salad features roast chicken, provolone cheese and creamy Caesar dressing. The Antipasta Salad includes sliced ham, chilled Italian meats, provolone cheese and golden Italian dressing. All three salads are served on a bed of mixed greens and pasta with red onions and tomato wedges, and complemented with a seasoned, hot breadstick. The suggested retail price ranges from $2.99 to $3.99.
"The salads are just in time for summer when temperatures soar and customers want a lighter alternative to hot and heavy foods," said Gigi Norton, TRG brand marketing manager for the Pasta Connection brand.
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