August 2018 | Food Newsfeed
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August 2018

Activist Pushes Outback to Sell or Spinoff Other Brands

Activist investor Barington Capital Group, L.P. has pushed Bloomin’ Brands for change before. Back in February, the company sent a letter to Bloomin’s chairman and chief executive officer, Liz Smith, along with a detailed presentation that outlined how Barington felt Bloomin’ could improve shareholder value and the performance of its casual brands, Outback Steakhouse, Carrabba’s, Bonefish Grill, and Fleming’s.

Cooper’s Hawk Taps Potbelly Exec as CFO

Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurants is bringing on Michael Coyne as chief financial officer, effective October 1. Coyne arrives with more than three decades of leadership experience, including a six-month stint as interim CEO at Potbelly Corp.

Johnny’s Italian Steakhouse Takes Center Stage

Ajay Singh has witnessed teachers, physicists, and chemical engineers moonlight as servers at Johnny’s Italian Steakhouse. Given the nature of the 12-unit brand’s training program, the notion doesn’t surprise him.

Romaine, Blockchain, and the Future of Food Safety

Romaine lettuce dominated headlines this spring, when nearly 100 people became ill after eating romaine tainted with E.coli. This particular strain of bacteria was especially strong, with half of the people affected requiring hospitalization.

Buffalo Wild Wings Fires Up New Value Menu, Fantasy Game for Football Season

With a new marketing chief at the controls, Buffalo Wild Wings unveiled an extensive new partnership and ad campaign Wednesday it hopes will turn its Sundays into serious traffic and profit drivers.Kicking off Sunday, September 9—week one of the NFL calendar—Buffalo Wild Wings will showcase an exclusive game, menu, marketing push, and other activations, especially in regards to its Blazin' Rewards program, intended to capitalize on football season.

Doug Thompson Named COO at Texas Roadhouse

For all intents and purposes, Doug Thompson helmed the chief operating officer role at Texas Roadhouse for the past three years, ever since Steve Ortiz’s 2015 retirement. The 540-unit chain made the change official August 23.

Become Cider Savvy with These Expert Tips

Hard cider is big news in the beverage world. After a period of exponential growth across the board in the category, the last couple of years have seen a surging interest in local and regional ciders.Drinkers are increasingly open to tasting diverse varieties and pairing ciders with food.

Dick’s Wings Owner to Acquire Fat Patty’s for $12.3M

ARC Group, which changed its name from American Restaurant Concepts in 2014, is dealing again. After announcing a complex plan to buy Tilted Kilt in June, the owner of Dick’s Wings & Grill said August 27 it has entered into an agreement to acquire the Fat Patty’s franchise.

Buffalo Wild Wings Taps New Marketing Chief

Outside of saying it planned to keep buying chains, Inspire Brands has been relatively tight-lipped since shaking up the restaurant landscape. After closing a $2.9 billion deal for Buffalo Wild Wings in February, Arby’s Restaurant Group morphed into the new company, fueled by private-equity giant Roark Capital, with chief executive Paul Brown at the helm.

Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen Hit with Security Breach

Darden’s continued efforts with its latest acquisition, Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen, will now include recovery from a data breach. The company said it was notified by federal authorities that a legacy point-of-sale system at “certain Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen restaurants,” might have been compromised in a cyberattack incident involving restaurants in 23 states.

What's Trending in Fall Fruits

Meatier, heartier fall fruits are finding the spotlight on full-service restaurant menus this fall, transforming from dish accent to star. “The trend is lighter, healthier fall meals, like duck paired to sautéed persimmons,” says Maiki Le, executive chef at Los Angeles’ Upstairs 2.

Packaging Enters a New Frontier in Foodservice

Fueled by an accelerating consumer appetite for convenience and choice, restaurant delivery continues to climb.Over the last five years, foodservice delivery sales have jumped 20 percent, according to The NPD Group.

Wait Times Slam Red Robin's Performance

Chief executive Denny Marie Post called Red Robin’s recent results “profoundly and personally disappointing,” Tuesday afternoon as the brand recapped second-quarter results. Same-store sales declined 2.