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Executive Insights

How Sam Ballas and East Coast Wings are Winning the Wing War

At first glance, East Coast Wings + Grill’s growth plan might seem bold, perhaps even ambitious: Take a 35-unit chicken-wing chain and build it beyond 100 restaurants. Given the casual-dining landscape, where retraction—not expansion—is the buzzword, East Coast Wings would be bucking the trend.

How Philly Brewer Dave Goldman is Building a Craft Empire

When Dave Goldman finds something he’s passionate about, his first instinct is to run with it. Take his career in the foodservice industry. After starting out at a high-end grocery store at the ripe age of 11, Goldman went on to work in pizza shops, major in hotel and restaurant management at the University of Delaware, and become a partner at Italian Bistro, a concept with a smattering of locations across the Philadelphia area—all before graduating from college.

Should You Open a Fast Casual?

Even as momentum has slowed in the fast-casual sector, full-service operators and chefs continue to enter the quick-service fray en masse. Some want a crack at becoming the next Shake Shack or Sweetgreen, attracting investors and big potential profits.

Beef ‘O’ Brady’s CEO on What's Next for the Transitioning Chain

Changes are afoot at Beef ‘O’ Brady’s and its sister concept, The Brass Tap. In August, CapitalSpring acquired a majority stake in FSC Franchising Co. LLC, the franchisor of the two chains. A more recent change took place when FSC announced Scott SirLouis as its new chief operating officer.

Why the Classic Steakhouse Still Reigns in America

Restaurant fads arrive almost daily these days. Ramen and Asian fusion are in, restaurant kiosks proliferate, and tablet eateries, executed without servers, are spiking, and The New Yorker recently profiled a “pan-Soviet fusion” eatery located in, where else, Brooklyn? But there’s one trusty standby that never seems to fade: the classic steakhouse.

This Strategy Can Increase Wine Sales

Creating a unique and diverse wine experience with wine by-the-glass offerings is as important to customer engagement as providing a wealth of chef-inspired menu items. Opening the door to greater wine consumption by encouraging consumers to sample a larger number of vintages is a huge opportunity for restaurants.

The Rock Stars Dominating the Restaurant World

A restaurant that treats every customer like a rock star—that is the vision of Rock & Brews, a casual-dining eatery that features music videos from classic rock bands and music-themed dishes. But unlike other pop culture chains, Rock & Brews is a food-first concept with music embedded in its DNA.

Executive: Why Franchises Need the Save Local Business Act

Recently, I was honored to represent the International Franchise Association along with 500 franchisees, fellow franchisors, and vendors in Washington D.C. as part of an effort to oppose joint employer standards which threaten the foundation of the American franchise model.

A Restaurant's Survival Guide to Natural Disasters

The news has been hard to miss lately. Four major hurricanes hurtled toward American shores, knocking out power, flooding buildings, and ruining lives and businesses in one fell swoop.And many experts agree these catastrophic events are only going to get worse and more frequent.

NRAEF's Apprenticeship Program Creates Career Opportunities

Tell me about the Hospitality Sector Registered Apprenticeship project. How did it come into being?Last year, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) invested $90 million in Apprenticeship USA to help states accelerate apprenticeship strategies and grow programs in new industries to provide economic opportunities for more Americans.