Most Clicked Restaurant SmartBrief Stories

1. Ruby Tuesday hopes to improve speed, experience for diners with tabletop tablets

Restaurant SmartBrief | Jul 27, 2015

Ruby Tuesday will test tabletop tablets in its restaurants beginning this fall. The tablets will allow customers to order and pay at the table, which can speed the dining process, and have games for customers to play while they wait. The move targets families with kids in an effort to recapture some of the market Ruby Tuesday lost when it repositioned itself as more upscale, president and CEO James Buettgen said. Nation's Restaurant News (free registration) (07/24)

2. Report: What should be on the menu for Gen Z?

Restaurant SmartBrief | Jul 24, 2015

Americans 20 and younger are a bigger group than millennials, and they visit restaurants at about the same rate, according to a recent report from Y-Pulse. Gen Z consumers want made-to-order handheld food that's easy to eat on the go, the report said, and some of their tastes change as they mature. "As kids grow up their sense of culinary adventure increases with more interest in ethnic foods, fresh and local offerings," said Executive Director Sharon Olson. (07/23)

3. Oldest U.S. Pizza Hut to close after 55 years

Restaurant SmartBrief | Jul 23, 2015

Entrepreneur online (07/22)

4. Chick-fil-A tops latest social media rankings

Restaurant SmartBrief | Jul 22, 2015

Chick-fil-A bumped Panera Bread out of first place in the latest Restaurant Social Media Index rankings from DigitalCoCo. Panera fell to fourth place, behind Sonic and Chipotle in second and third, and Wendy's rounded out the top five. The index tracks brands across 17 social platforms and evaluates them based on mobile, engagement, influence, sentiment and location-based actions. SmartBrief/SmartBlog on Food & Beverage (07/22)

5. Minimum wage hike could lead to job cuts, less work experience

Restaurant SmartBrief | Jul 28, 2015

Efforts to raise the minimum hourly wage to $15 for quickservice employees in New York will likely harm the workers it purports to help, writes New York Times columnist David Brooks. The wage hike would likely lead to significant job cuts, less work experience for low-skilled workers and little impact on poverty rates, he writes. The New York Times (free-article access for SmartBrief readers) (07/24)

6. Dunkin' CEO blasts N.Y.'s restaurant employee wage hike

Restaurant SmartBrief | Jul 24, 2015

A recommendation by New York state's wage board to raise the minimum hourly wage for quickservice restaurant employees to $15 by the end of 2018 unfairly targets a specific industry and the franchisees that keep it running, Dunkin' Brands CEO Nigel Travis said Thursday. "What's going to happen is that youth unemployment is, in my view, going to become worse because there will be pressure on franchisees to cut back," he said. (07/23) CNNMoney (07/23)

7. N.Y. seeks $15-an-hour pay for foodservice employees

Restaurant SmartBrief | Jul 23, 2015

A panel in New York officially has recommended a raise to $15 for the state's foodservice employees. The measure focuses on quickserve eateries, but the increase may force casual eateries to increase pay to compete. "This raise, combined with the 50% increase that the previous wage board gave to tipped employees, will force labor costs to dramatically increase for all types of restaurants," said Kevin Dugan, a spokesman for the New York State Restaurant Association. The Washington Post (tiered subscription model) (07/22) The New York Times (free-article access for SmartBrief readers) (07/22)

8. McDonald's may expand all-day breakfast this fall

Restaurant SmartBrief | Jul 22, 2015

McDonald's may roll out its all-day breakfast menu nationwide in October, after launching tests in San Diego and Nashville earlier this year, according to a company memo to franchisees. Franchisee committees would need to approve the plan, which would require buying new equipment. "Serving all-day breakfast is likely the number one request we hear from McDonald's customers," the company said in a statement. The Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model) (07/21)

9. Red Lobster banks on new menu, seafood upgrades

Restaurant SmartBrief | Jul 22, 2015

A year after Golden Gate Capital bought Red Lobster from Darden Restaurants, the chain is upgrading its menu and honing its image in an effort to be seen as the country's seafood authority. The chain has dropped several non-seafood dishes from the menu and added specialty dishes, seasonal offerings and a wider variety of fish. Orlando Sentinel (Fla.) (tiered subscription model) (07/21)

10. The challenge of knowing how, when and why to comp

Restaurant SmartBrief | Jul 28, 2015

Comping a patron's full check can give a restaurant the chance to redeem itself and gain a loyal customer, but knowing how and when to give a compensatory meal is vital to protecting profits, according to Washington State Wine Commission marketing director David Flaherty. This is particularly true at the bar, writes Flaherty, who offers several tips for strategic comping.  Nation's Restaurant News (free registration) (07/27)

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