April 20, 2021
Restaurant SmartBrief
On the Front Burner
McDonald's teams with K-pop group to debut 2 new sauces
(PRNewsfoto/McDonald's Corp.)
McDonald's is introducing The BTS Meal in a global campaign debuting May 26 in the US and the chicken nugget meal will include two sauces that are new to the US market: sweet chili and Cajun. The collaboration with the K-pop group follows celebrity-inspired meals named for musicians Travis Scott and J Balvin.
Full Story: Restaurant Business online (4/19),  Reuters (4/19),  Ad Age (tiered subscription model) (4/19) 
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All Good. No bad.
WHOLLY® AVOCADO is 100% pure Hass avocados that are ready to use. Just open the bag and add to your dishes. With our HPP processing, and never having to cut into the avocado, you also avoid introducing unhealthy pathogens. Sounds good already, doesn't it? Try it yourself. Request a sample.
Restaurant News
Taco Bell to start recycling program for sauce packets
(Joshua Blanchard/Getty Images)
Taco Bell is joining with TerraCycle to start recycling the chain's currently nonrecyclable plastic hot sauce packets, which US customers use and discard at a rate of 8.2 billion per year. The pilot program is set to begin later this year, and will include an option for customers to recycle packets from their homes.
Full Story: Nation's Restaurant News (free registration) (4/19),  Food & Wine (4/19) 
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The pandemic spurred MOOYAH Burgers, Fries & Shakes to accelerate its plans to add drive-thru service, and the 87-unit chain is on track to open the first drive-thru unit later this year. Investment in better order-taking technology, faster cooking equipment and grills and fry stations that can handle more volume helped pave the way for the expansion into drive-thru, company President Tony Darden said.
Full Story: QSR (4/15) 
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Modern takes on the automat concept cater to demand for contactless dining that has surged during the pandemic. Automat Kitchen opened in New Jersey earlier this year and includes an order-ahead option, and Marriott is testing smartphone-controlled vending machines in place of breakfast buffets at two Fairfield Inn & Suites locations.
Full Story: Restaurant Business online (4/15) 
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Enter to win $50 for a charity of your choice
We are seeking input from those in foodservice and hospitality to better understand the current attitudes about the state of diversity, equity and inclusion in the industry. Results will be included in a report that will identify action steps for the industry in exploring anti-racism initiatives and instilling sustainable programs. Take the survey.
Leading Voices
In this interview, Culver's Director of Menu Development Quinn Adkins discusses the brand's core items as well as its efforts to innovate and its work with family farmers. "Culver's recognizes and we celebrate that the lifeblood of our entire industry begins with those individual farmers, those individual ranchers," Adkins notes.
Full Story: Restaurant Business online (4/15) 
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Process matters more than outcome if you want to learn from your decisions and create sustained success, writes Wally Bock. "Once you know how something came out, it's human nature to rearrange your memory so that you look better than you were," he writes.
Full Story: Three Star Leadership (4/15) 
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Discover Ventless Equipment Solutions
Kitchen spaces are shrinking and in some cases, nonexistent. Maximize your space, your way with ventless cooking equipment designed to eliminate expensive costs associated with traditional ventilation, from installation to operation. Learn more
SmartBrief Originals
Culinary Spotlight
Some sushi chefs are breaking with tradition in favor of sustainability, creating menus that rely on sustainably sourced fish and plant-based options. At Rosella in New York City, chef-owners Yoni Lang and Jeffrey Miller focus the menu on domestic seafood, and offer a collection of dishes that allows them to use every part of the fish.
Full Story: Robb Report (4/19) 
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The peak of pea season is here
Peas are making their annual April appearance at farmers markets, and all varieties -- shelling, snow and snap -- can enhance dishes from salads to soups. Snap and shelling peas complement one another in a salad made with radishes and mint, while snow peas add freshness to pan-fried tempeh with lemongrass.
Full Story: The Washington Post (tiered subscription model) (4/17) 
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News from the National Restaurant Association
Warm weather and additional stimulus payments bolstered consumer spending in restaurants. Full story.
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Movers & Shakers
April prepares her green traffic light and the world thinks Go.
Christopher Morley,
writer, editor, journalist
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