Starbucks will open or renovate 85 stores in low-income urban and rural communities over the next five years, bringing the total number of these community stores to 100. The chain will also work with the United Way to create job training and education programs in each store.
An alderman in Chicago has proposed a ban on the use of polystyrene takeout containers that would require restaurants to use recyclable or compostable containers for takeout and delivery orders. The proposed ordinance also calls for food sellers to have color-coded bins to separate recycling, compostables and trash.
Restaurant chains including Shake Shack, Taco Bell and Red Robin Gourmet Burgers are experimenting with perks including four-day weeks and salary increases to keep store managers around longer. "The research is pretty clear that the higher the tenure of the staff person is, the higher the sales per square foot in that establishment," said Hudson Riehle, vice president of the National Restaurant Association's research division.
Foreign-born staffers make up nearly a quarter of the national restaurant workforce, according to the National Restaurant Association. The percentage is even higher in the Houston market, where chefs like Hugo Ortega, who came to the US decades ago and gained legal status under President Ronald Reagan's amnesty program, have risen through the ranks and contributed to the local culinary scene.
Native Grill & Wings is growing in the highly competitive chicken wing business, with a business model that's focused on franchising. "[T]he great thing about our size is I don't have to worry about what Buffalo Wild Wings or Applebee's is doing. I just have to worry about what's going on in my backyard," said Dan Chaon, CEO of the 28-unit chain.
Red Robin Gourmet Burgers' turnaround strategy grabbed SmartBrief readers' attention this week, as did stories on Taco Bell's plan to raise manager pay and Panera Bread's new wellness-focused menu items. News that H-E-B ranked first among US grocery chains was this week's most-clicked food-and-beverage story.
Panna cotta rose to prominence in the 1990s as the dessert of choice in Italian restaurants, and the creamy custard remains popular -- in a wide variety of iterations -- on menus today, writes Sadie Stein. The simple combination of dairy and gelatin can be flavored with ingredients ranging from spices to rose petals and topped with sauces or seasonal fruits.
Chef Stefano Secchi opened his New York restaurant Rezdora because he wanted to combine the cuisine of Italy's Emilia-Romagna region with ingredients from local producers. In this interview, Secchi talks about how he built the restaurant and the mentors who shaped his culinary career.