April 2019 | Food Newsfeed
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April 2019

The Complete List of 2019 James Beard Award Winners

Restaurateurs, chefs, and other hospitality insiders came together Monday night to celebrate the winners of the prestigious awards. The James Beard Foundation unveiled the winners for the 2019 edition across nearly 60 categories at the Lyric Opera of Chicago.

Denny's Invites Guests Into its Brand Revolution

Denny’s revitalization strategy has touched every aspect of the brand. From new menu items to restaurant facelifts, the casual-dining brand is doing everything it can to attract new customers and turn them into loyal diners.

My First 100 Days as CEO

The first 100 days of a typical chief executive officer usually implies big changes and shake-ups within a company. I’m pleased to say my experience breaks the mold. In all honesty, my initial days as CEO were similar to my last 100 days serving as chief operating officer—a constant whirlwind of activity and never a dull moment, but always aligned in the direction we are heading.

Texas Roadhouse and Rising Labor Costs Square Off

Texas Roadhouse’s top-line sales and traffic remain enviable by industry standards. But there’s no question the labor war, especially at the hourly level, is taking its toll. The mounting issue showed up in force during the first quarter of fiscal 2019, announced Monday afternoon.

The Impact of New Waste Legislation on Restaurants: An Overview

As American consumers, we love to eat out which is why it’s no surprise that the restaurant industry is a decent contributor to our waste stream as a country. According to some estimates, a single restaurant can produce 150,000 pounds of waste in a year.

Outback Invested $50M on Better Food and Service

In the summer of 2017, Outback saw its traffic trends start to strengthen. The brand jumped 130 basis points from the first quarter to the second, which marked the highest result in two years. Although still negative at 0.

Chef Michael Schulson’s Restaurant Empire Goes Italian

Following stints in New York City, Philadelphia, and Tokyo, chef Michael Schulson launched his restaurant empire in 2008. Schulson Collective now comprises 10 hot spots dotting the East Coast. While his lauded concepts mostly revolve around Asian fare, the chef has veered into new and unexpected culinary directions of late, and Harp & Crown in Philadelphia—with a seamless blend of art deco charm, new American/global fare, and even a retro, two-lane, reservations-only bowling alley—may be the most intriguing to date.

BJ's Keeps the Positive Run Going

Even though the months of March and April tend to be the most unpredictable for BJ’s Restaurants—tax season, spring breaks, and holidays, like Easter, can all have a major impact on traffic trends—this past quarter proved to be another step forward for the polished casual brand.

Kona Grill Delisted After Missing Annual Fee

Kona Grill was delisted from the Nasdaq Global stock exchange on April 25 after the company failed to pay its annual fee. The Scottsdale, Arizona-based company has about 13 million total outstanding shares, and, according to the Nasdaq 2019 listing guide, was on the hook for an annual fee of $55,000.

Fleming's Seizes the Fine-Dining Opportunity

Outback Steakhouse’s resurgence has, rightfully so, garnered its share of headlines. The brand is riding an eight-quarter run of positive same-store sales. Its fiscal 2018 jump of 4 percent was Outback’s best annual comp result in six years.

Tequila or Mezcal? Guests Want More of Both

The agave plant is the heart and soul of not only tequila, but also the more diverse mezcal, which is increasing in popularity faster than any other distilled alcoholic beverage in America, according to data from International Wine and Spirits Research.

The Fear and Promise of Mobile Technology

Mobile technology first took over our lives. Now, it’s becoming one of the most disruptive business opportunities to hit the hospitality space in recent memory. In the case of restaurants, it’s shifted everything from point of sale to inventory management to training, customer loyalty, audits, and much more.

Kona Grill Faces Nasdaq Delisting Again

Kona Grill said in an April 22 filing that it was recently notified by Nasdaq that it could face delisting on the stock market if it fails to pay “certain fees,” by April 25. If Kona Grill elects not to appeal, trading of its common stock will be suspended at the opening of business that day, the notice said, and the company’s securities will be removed from listing and registration.