October 2015 | Food Newsfeed
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October 2015

The Hunt for Hearty Entrées

Far different from foraging, working with game meat requires a different set of rules. In fact, USDA regulations prohibit serving meat from a personal hunting expedition in restaurants.But sourcing wild game is getting easier.

Holiday Spirit

At Evelyn Drinkery, deep in New York’s East Village, one of the summer libations that partner Christian Sanders served to parched locals was the Portobello Road Street Party Punch, created by the brand’s own Jake Burger.

The Menu Labeling Survival Guide

Chains with more than 20 locations must make menu item calorie counts and other nutrition information available to consumers by the December 2016 deadline to comply with the FDA menu labeling rules. And even with the draft guidance issued by the FDA on September 11, 2015 containing new details on how to meet the menu labeling requirements, the task is formidable.

Affordable Rich Reds

Two decades ago, a bottle of Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon priced under $100 on a wine list might have made a serious wine drinker pause. The assumption: It must not be worth drinking.But in the current unraveling of an economic recession, that skeptic eye is no longer.

Bringing the Brand Home

There isn’t a lot of down time at Dave & Buster’s. But Kevin Bachus, the senior vice president of entertainment and games strategy at the 76-unit chain, which projects total revenues of $822 million to $831 million in the 2015 fiscal year, thinks there can be even less.

Outsourcing Your Supply Chain Can Boost Profits

It’s a tough world out there for restaurant operators. They see profit margins being squeezed by rising commodity, health care, and labor costs. Changing consumer taste preferences are forcing them to scramble to improve their menus.

Top 3 Things Restaurant Owners Can Do Now to Launch a Catering Division by the Holidays

Fourth quarter holiday catering is all about supply and demand. There are only a few weeks before “Holiday Demand 2015” is at its peak. What can your restaurant do in this short period of time to capitalize on these available sales?You can follow the 3 “do’s:”Know what you can DODon’t DO it because you see big $$ signsMarket that you can DO itWORDS OF WISDOM: Before, let me repeat, BEFORE, you connect with that catering client by phone or email in late October or November about a holiday event, you MUST have answers to all of their questions and any marketing materials ready to send immediately.

Are Surcharges the Solution to Pay for Healthcare?

Last year, on the first day of October, several Los Angeles restaurants started adding a 3 percent surcharge to their guests’ bills in order to fund employees’ healthcare coverage. It was a strategic shift in policy, motivated in part by the burden insurance premiums would place on already thin profit margins.

Coffee as Performance Art

As a finale to Alizé Restaurant’s seven-course tasting menu, guests who order coffee or hot tea are treated to an artistic performance of their beverage being created. The fine-dining restaurant, located at the top of the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, released the new beverage offering in June.

The Name Game

Eighteen years ago, Donnie Madia confronted a daunting professional dilemma.As a founding partner in One Off Hospitality, a Chicago-based enterprise now responsible for some of the Windy City’s foremost dining treasures, including Avec, The Publican, and The Violet Hour, Madia and his colleagues battled—albeit cordially—over the name of the group’s inaugural restaurant in the city’s West Loop neighborhood.

How to Identify a Wine of High Quality

Any discussion of wine quality must begin with a distinction between commodity wines and premium or fine wines. Commodity wines usually sell for under $15, although the “commercial premium” sector is growing rapidly and pricier wines will increasingly fall into this category.

Taking On Tap Takeovers

Even for Green Flash Brewing Co. out of San Diego, a brewery that’s broadened its distribution territory from around a dozen states to all 50 in the past three years, tap takeovers remain a great way to captivate new customers, an engagement that benefits the restaurant hosting the tap takeover as much as it does the brewery.

On-Call Controversy

The restaurant industry is reliably unpredictable. What was supposed to be a bustling Friday night can quickly turn into a shockingly quiet, slow stretch. Likewise, there’s no telling when tables could surprisingly fill up during a thin-staffed weekday shift.

Set for the Holidays

Attribute it to the season, to social evolutions, to an increased awareness of health, nutrition, and lifestyle management—whatever the reason—food is top of mind. “Right now, in America, we’re at our greatest level of food consciousness,” says Maeve Webster, senior director at Datassential.

Food Safety Is Really About Leadership

As a consumer, I’ve always loved fine dining: the ambiance, pressed white linens, nice tableware, chilled forks, well trained staff, and great food. While indulging in these luxuries—and the expenses associated with them—one has certain expectations.