March 2015 | Food Newsfeed

March 2015

Serious Food, Celebrity Status

Mike Isabella turned heads around the country as a contestant on season six of Bravo! TV’s Top Chef. His boisterous personality, classic Jersey accent, witty jokes, spiky black hair, and candid opinions made him a memorable favorite with viewers.

In the Raw

Look for a surge in the popularity of sustainable seafood. Non-traditional fish and sustainability were subjects that topped the National Restaurant Association’s highly anticipated “What’s Hot” survey and its 2015 trend forecast.

Airport Dining Lifts Off

Eating at a U.S. airport used to mean one of two choices: fast food or full-service chain. However, the same trends impacting the broader restaurant marketplace have made their way past airport security into food courts and terminals across the country.

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.

First Quarter Trends Within the Restaurant Industry

Maybe it’s America’s resurgent obsession with bacon, or the emergence of legions of foodies, but people are flocking to restaurants again.2015 is shaping up to be an excellent year for the restaurant industry, with TDn2K’s Black Box Intelligence reporting that in January, restaurant chains posted their highest same-store sales and traffic growth rates in more than six years.

Star Power: Leveraging Online Reviews

Today, more than 80 percent of the U.S. population reads online reviews before making any type of purchase. These reviews have tremendous influence, with Millennials even preferring online reviews to the recommendations of friends and family.

Delivery Services Go Gourmet

Gourmet restaurants are going a step further to cater to customers—by giving them the option to dine at home.On the heels of GrubHub and Seamless, new delivery services are focusing on the high-end market, targeting their efforts on transporting gourmet food to the homebody.

What Is EMV?

October 2015 will likely mark the beginning of the end for “swipe and sign” credit and debit card transactions in the United States. Businesses that have not upgraded their systems to accept card payments according to Europay, MasterCard, and Visa (EMV) standards at this point will find themselves liable for losses caused by fraudulent payments.

The Tip of the Iceberg

“I can remember when kale in a salad was outlandish,” says Dave Becker, chef and owner of Juniper in Wellesley, Massachusetts. Certainly, salads have adapted and changed with customers’ changing palates.

Business Diners Pay Dividends

High-end restaurants that typically ramp up their staffing and operations for weekend suppers and Sunday brunch may need to add a new segment to their strategies: Weekday business diners are the latest hot commodity.

Mexican Nor’easter

When most people think about opening a Mexican restaurant, the Northeastern region of the United States doesn’t normally come to mind.The folks at Tio Juan’s Margaritas might consider that a bit shortsighted.

Retail Shops Present Opportunity for Restaurateurs

After running restaurants in five-star resorts all over the world, Chef Azmin Ghahreman opened his Laguna Beach, California, restaurant Sapphire with an adjoining retail store to market the spices and flavors he discovered from cultures across the globe.

Four Must-Have Apps

Savvy restaurant owners understand apps can speed up operations, help manage back-of-the-house tasks, and even suggest wine pairings to customers. Among the thousands of apps available in the market, these four apps are worth reviewing.

Italian Wines Sparkle Against Champagne

Italy’s wine culture faces a conundrum. Long associated—in the U.S., at least—with bottles of Prosecco and Asti Spumante (Italy’s top-selling sparkling wines), Italian wineries are working to thrust other, less-familiar sparkling wines into the spotlight.

History, Reinvented

Even before opening his first restaurant—the well-received Alden & Harlow, located in the historic Harvard Square—Chef Michael Scelfo had an enviable track record in kitchens from coast to coast.