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Executive Insights

Fox Leads the Hunt

Sam Fox is a happy guy.Laughing frequently as he discusses Fox Restaurant Concepts—the restaurant empire he built in Arizona and is rapidly expanding from coast to coast—Fox speaks with passion and enthusiasm about the dining concepts he’s created and the company he says has annual sales “in the range of $200 million a year.

Game Changer

It’s a crisp 57-degree Sunday morning in Santa Clara, California. The late-autumn sun sits shrouded behind clouds. On the corner of Tasman Drive and LaFayette Street is Levi’s Stadium, the 70,000-seat home to the San Francisco 49ers that opened in fall 2014.

Tapping Into a House Soda Program

I’m a firm believer that every restaurant should have a strong non-alcoholic beverage program. There are a multitude of reasons why somebody might not be able to enjoy a cocktail or wine, and why should that guest have to suffer? Each guest should still have a selection of exciting, fun, one-of-a-kind beverages to choose from.

Looking Global, Acting Local

The Melting Pot RestaurantsHeadquarters: Tampa, FloridaFounded: 1975Unit Count: 135, with three company-owned locations2013 sales: $220 millionAverage unit volume: $1.6 millionAverage check:$40 per dinerOn the cusp of its 40th anniversary, The Melting Pot has hit its stride as a mature, national brand—and now it’s picking up the pace to become even more relevant in local markets and expand internationally.

A Ruth’s Chris Love Story

Mark Oswald wasn’t sure who would be on the other end of the phone when he answered. “Hello?”A low, gravelly voice rasped, “Mark! Something’s wrong with your numbers.”It was the fall of 1991, and Mark was sitting in the Buckhead, Atlanta, location of Ruth’s Chris Steak House.

Prix-Fixe Perfection

Indra Nooyi should meet Naomi Pomeroy. In a broad­cast interview this summer, Nooyi, the charismatic CEO of PepsiCo, said women cannot do it all—referring to the delicate work-life balance that women strive to achieve.

Family Matters

Building a career and legacy in the restaurant industry for nearly 40 years—27 of those with family-dining concept Golden Corral—Mickey Chance would love nothing more than to keep his company, Chance Hospitality, going for years, decades, and even generations to come.

Second Class Graduates WFF Executive Leadership Program

WFF, the premier leadership development organization in the foodservice sector, announced the second graduating class of its Executive Leadership Program, fueled by Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management and sponsored by PepsiCo.

CIA Alum Delivers Commencement Address

Rajat Parr, a 1996 graduate of The Culinary Institute of America and now a world-renowned sommelier, delivered the commencement address at the college's Napa Valley campus on Friday, March 21. Parr graduated from the CIA intending to be a chef, but discovered wine is his true passion.

El Bulli Chef Gives CIA Lecture

More than 800 students at The Culinary Institute of America (CIA) in Hyde Park, New York, received insight about the very definition of cooking from Ferran Adrià, one of the world's most innovative and influential chefs.

Culinary Educators Dish on Menu Trends

Local and sustainable food preparation are the leading menu development mandates that today’s chefs need to embrace, reveals a new survey focused on culinary educators and students.Released in March, Culinary Trends: Thoughts and Perspective from Chef Educators and Culinary Students from Culinary Visions Panel, a foodservice research and forecasting firm, asked about topics, techniques, and trends relating to food, beverages, condiments, culinary themes, and cooking methods.

NRA Partners with eHealth on Insurance Coverage

The National Restaurant Association announced it is partnering with eHealth, Inc. to offer tools and resources to industry employees looking to find health insurance coverage.“A critical part of our work as an association is to offer solutions for our members,” says Phil Kafarakis, chief innovation & member advancement officer, NRA.

NRA Introduces Foodamental Studio

Attendees at this year’s 2014 National Restaurant Association Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show will have the opportunity to explore new culinary trends hands-on at the new Foodamental Studio, an intimate, interactive educational workshop area, located in North Hall, Level One.

FSR Magazine Names 40 under 40 Rising Stars

The March issue of FSR magazine profiles 40 rising stars under 40 who are making an impact on their companies, communities, and customers’ experiences.  The list includes Cheryl Dolven, director of health and wellness at Darden Restaurants, who is helping bring healthier menu options to the 425 million guests that Darden serves each year, as well as leading chefs, independent operators, executives in regional restaurant groups, and innovative beverage professionals.

CIA President Dr. Tim Ryan Elected to NRA Board

Dr. Tim Ryan, president of The Culinary Institute of America (CIA), has been elected to the Board of Directors of the National Restaurant Association. Dr. Ryan's election to the board follows on the heels of his recent selection as one of the 50 most powerful people in the restaurant industry.