Famous Dave's aims to raise the energy level with remodel | Fazoli's shifts back into growth mode with turnaround plan | Chefs dish on the benefits of tiny kitchens
April 20, 2018
Restaurant SmartBrief
On the Front Burner
Famous Dave's aims to raise the energy level with remodel
Barbecue chain Famous Dave's has introduced a revamped menu and remodeled look at its Coon Rapids, Minn., restaurant, with features designed to raise the energy level. The menu includes 23 new items, and the restaurant's central bar is surrounded by 15 televisions and a marquee that proclaims "America's Best Ribs."
Star Tribune (Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn.) (tiered subscription model) (4/19) 
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Real flavors are all the rage.
Back-of-house-style Kitchen Craft fries are seasoned with 100% sea salt and real herbs and spices like rosemary and cracked pepper. Consistent and easy to prepare, Kitchen Craft fries help you free up time in the kitchen—so you can keep up with demand.
Restaurant News
Fazoli's shifts back into growth mode with turnaround plan
Fazoli's shifts back into growth mode with turnaround plan
(Eli Hodapp/Flickr)
Fazoli's was struggling when Carl Howard took over as CEO a decade ago and he oversaw several years of downsizing. Now the 220-unit chain has launched a turnaround effort that includes restaurant remodels, menu improvements and mobile ordering, and it's growing again with nine new eateries that opened last year and six more planned for 2018.
Nation's Restaurant News (free registration) (4/19) 
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Leading Voices
Chefs dish on the benefits of tiny kitchens
A small restaurant kitchen makes room for more tables in the front of the house and forces cooks to become more efficient, chefs said. "You don't use as much energy if you can just grab things, if you don't have to run to everything," said chef Chris Ono, who moved from the large kitchen at Eleven Madison Park in New York City to a 170-square-foot space at Esters Wine Shop & Bar in Santa Monica, Calif.
The Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model) (4/19) 
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Scraps, 24-hour schedule helps chef's sustainability effort
Chef Christina Lecki encourages her suppliers to use reusable packaging and employs a 24-hour cooking schedule to reduce waste and champion sustainability at Reynard in Brooklyn, N.Y. Among her creations are onion skin borscht, dill stem vinaigrette and a garlic soup made with leftover whey from yogurt.
Food & Wine online (4/18) 
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Change how you listen to discover opportunities
The best listeners appreciate the other person's perspective and realize new possibilities could result from each exchange, writes C. Otto Scharmer of the Presencing Institute. "You listen with openness to what is unknown and emerging," he writes.
SmartBrief/Leadership (4/19) 
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Your go-to, anywhere fry
With McCain® Flavorlasts®, anywhere your food can go, you know your delicious, everyday fry will stay crispy. The clear batter helps them hold up to 15 minutes after cooking so they're perfect during the dine-in or takeout rush.
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SmartBrief Originals
Most Clicked: Take a look at this week's hottest food and beverage industry stories with SmartBrief
Bocuse d'Or, Cracker Barrel stories won readers this week
Team USA's victory in the Bocuse d'Or Americas qualifying round caught readers' attention this week and a profile of Cracker Barrel's longtime antiques buyer also drew attention. Two private-equity groups' $2.4 billion deal to acquire Hearthside Food Solutions was this week's most-read food-and-beverage story.
SmartBrief/Food & Beverage (4/20) 
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Happy Hour
Culinary Spotlight
Beverages with better-for-you ingredients win customers
Restaurants are seeing swift sales for beverages made in-house with better-for-you and often fresh ingredients as more consumers rethink what they want to drink with their meals. "Diners today definitely are looking for alternatives to sugary sodas," said Daniel Sharp, director of culinary operations for The Meatball Shop in New York City.
Restaurant Hospitality online (4/17) 
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Mutton making a comeback in the US
Mutton is beginning to resurface on menus in the form of mutton burgers, noodle dishes and more as chefs aim to entice US consumers, many of whom have a bias against strong-flavored meats. Seamstress in New York City offers a burger made from the mature sheep meat, topped with curried pickles, fermented carrots and triple cream brie.
Food & Wine (4/2018) 
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News from the National Restaurant Association
Restaurateurs, Congress talk policy on Capitol Hill
More than 400 restaurateurs came to Washington, D.C., for our Annual Public Affairs Conference and to meet with lawmakers on issues that affect their businesses. Read more.
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