Employees in These States Will See a Higher Minimum Wage


After Election Day was over (last Tuesday) and the votes were counted, 4 states have voted to raise their minimum wage. Those four states are Arizona, Colorado, Maine and Washington.

The minimum wage will increase to the following for each of these 4 states:

  • Arizona – $12
  • Colorado – $12
  • Maine – $12
  • Washington – $13.50 (by 2020)

There will be mandated paid time leave from employers in Arizona and Washington. As long as restaurants in Arizona maintain a staff over 15 employees, then they must provide 40 hours of sick time per employee per year. If restaurants have less than, 15 employees then employees will still receive 24 hours of sick time. One hour of paid leave for every 40 hours of work is provided in Washington.

Information for this post was pulled from an article found here.

These Restaurants Have The Hookup for Veterans Day

Happy Veterans Day! We are all thankful for the contributions of veterans to our great nation and some places are trying to give back. Here are 9 restaurants that have Veterans Day deals (don’t forget to bring proof of service) :

  1. Buffalo Wild Wings – Free Wings and Fries
  2. Perkins Restaurant and Bakery – Free Magnificent Seven Meal (3 Buttermilk Pancakes, 2 eggs & choice to 2 sausage links or bacon strips)
  3. Applebee’s – Free Meal (Still must pay for drinks and tip, but the food is free)
  4. California Pizza Kitchen – Free Entree on Veterans Day menu (this is for dine in and patrons have a choice of pasta dish, pizza, or salad)
  5. Golden Corral – Military Appreciation Night from 5pm-9pm on Monday 11/14 (free dinner buffet and beverage)
  6. Ruby Tuesday – One Free Appetizer under $10
  7. Baskin-Robbins’ – 11 cents will be donated to the United States Organization for every scoop of ice creams sold
  8. Dickey’s Barbecue Pit – Free Meal (sandwich, side, and a Big Yellow Cup)
  9. Figaro’s Pizza – One Free Medium One-Topping Pizza

Information for this post was pulled from an article found here.

Add This to Your Appetizer Menu


It’s rare to find people that are not fond of these fried potatoes and restaurant owners/managers can take advantage of this. Technomic noted, on it’s MenuMonitor, that fries have seen a growth of 1.5% (more people are ordering fries when they are available).
Below are 3 common types of fries to add to your appetizer menu (or late night menu):

  1. Sweet Potato Fries
    1. These fries have seen more growth within the last year than most other appetizers. Penetration seems to be the greatest at casual dining operators. Adding a unique sauce to dip these fries in could separate you from your competitors.
  2. Loaded Fries
    1. These fries have seen the most attention out west (10% growth). Alcoholic sauce combinations (great for late night menu) do well with loaded fries.
  3. Chili Fries (and Chili-Cheese Fries)
    1. Classic fries as such give customers a familiar nostalgic feeling. Relish Burger Bistro and Style Pizza & Deli are a few restaurants that are offering a spin on this traditional appetizer.

Information for this post was pulled from an article found here.

These 4 Flavors are Picking Up Speed

Technomic’s MenuMonitor data has a list of the fastest-growing flavors on menus that it updates throughout the year. These flavors are a must have on your menu and have proven success across a variety of different menus. These trendy flavors come from a vegetable, a floral, and 2 fruit. The 4 flavors that are seeing outstanding growth are the following:

  1. Dark Cherry is seeing the most rapid growth among menu flavors within the last year. Some places you will see dark cherry flavoring are:
    1. Red Wine (Merlots and Pinot Noirs)
    2. Vinaigrette
    3. Carbonated Drinks
    4. Breakfast Dishes
    5. Paired with Meat
  2. Prickly Pear or, as some call, the cactus pear has a mixture of sweet and bland flavor. Blaze Pizza offers a unique twist to a notable Latin beverage known as Prickly Pear Agua Fresca. This fruit has opportunities in the following kinds of drinks:
    1. Cocktails
    2. Margaritas
  3. Bitter Greens are the third fastest growing flavor and are great for their versatility. These greens are flavorful, inexpensive, and normally marketed for their health benefits. Some examples of bitter greens and where they can be found are:
    1. Kale
    2. Dandelion
    3. Collard
    4. Broccoli Rabe
    5. Chard
    6. On top of Sandwiches
    7. Side to Entrees
  4. Hibiscus is the last flavor to round out the list. Hibiscus, like the cactus pear, is used mostly in beverages (unlike the cactus pear, hibiscus is used in non-alcoholic beverages more often).
    1. Bahama Breeze uses hibiscus in its High Tide Swizzle
    2. Growth potential in dessert

Information for this post was pulled form an article found here.

Six Beverage Ideas To Borrow From Top Global Chains

Global Chains have the opportunity to test their beverages around the world, gathering opinions from different preferences. Starbucks is known for using beverages that garner international success and adding them to their American menus. Below are 6 beverage ideas to borrow from some global chains.

  1. KFC’s Yuzu Tea Sparkler
    1. Replacing Lemons with Yuzu gives this drink the same citrus but a more prominent kick of tartness
  2. Dunkin’ Donuts’ Iced Chicha Fruit Coolatta
    1. This drink boasts a unique purple tint which may attract an audience that loves nontraditional colored food/beverages.
  3. Baskin-Robbins’ Papaya Pineapple Thick Shake
    1. Papaya will bring an exotic flavor to a shake complementing the sweetness of pineapple
  4. McDonald’s Belgian Chocolate Honeycomb Iced Frappe
    1. Mmmm this blend of chocolate and honey is super sweet and will definitely intrique those with a sweet tooth.
  5. The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf’s Avocado Coffee
    1. Avocados have become something that consumers are comfortable seeing, so they’ll be more open to trying this type of coffee.
  6. Starbucks Fruit Jelly Yogurt Frappuccino
    1. Now this is the most unique beverage of the 6. The texture of jelly will differentiate but more than likely not disappoint.

We’re not suggesting you steal these exact drinks, but we are suggesting you take a look at these innovations to possibly alter your beverage offerings.

Information for this post was pulled from an article found here.

We’re All More Alike Than We Think With These Global Restaurant Trends

Technomic has spotlighted four specific trends at the Global Restaurant Leader Conference which started yesterday and ends tomorrow.

-Six out of  the last ten meals purchased by typical consumers in Asia were described as “healthy” by buyers. The typical American Diner considers under 5  out of their last ten meals to be healthy. These are not the only 2 regions where healthy eating is becoming a natural choice. Technomic learned that 41% of humans everywhere have cut back on drinks and desserts, and 39% of humans are ordering fewer appetizers.

-Americans are not the only consumers that customize their meals at restaurants. Globally, one out of three restaurant meals are customized to fit the needs of the consumer. The numbers slightly vary across the globe with the customization of 33% North American and Asia meals, 38% of South American meals, and 37% of Middle Eastern meals.

-Almost half of restaurant meals around the world are eaten away from the actual physical establishment. Australia’s take out meals is very high at 41% and the leader in delivery is the Middle East at 30%.

-Transparency has always been an interesting topic in the restaurant business. Technomic asked consumers around the world about transparency in the ingredients used in restaurants and there were similar replies from region to region. The individuals that said yes to more transparency in restaurant ingredients ranged from 68% to 75% (North America at 68% and South America at 75%).

This information should be a wake-up call for restaurant owners/managers. The world is ever changing and so are consumer demands.

These statistics were found through nationally represented surveys presented by Technomic’s consumer research team. For more information on the latest consumer trends check out Technomic’s website.
Information for this post was pulled from an article found here.


Want to Get Ahead in the Restaurant Industry? Check out these 7 Interesting Consumer Trends.

We are 6 days into October and Fall has finally hit us. Seasons come and go much like fads and trends, but wouldn’t it be nice to know when the next trends will begin, like we do seasons? Technomic, a Chicago-based consulting and research firm monitors, predicts, and provides monthly reports on new eating trends in the food service industry. These reports can be used to enhance the marketing strategy for different restaurant chains.

If you’re looking to spice things up in your restaurant and attract a larger audience, then check out these 7 consumer trends and insights:

1) “31% of consumers, down from 36% in 2014, tend to eat a lighter lunch during the week than on the weekend.”
2) “32% of consumers strongly agree that their beverage preferences tend to change with the season.”
3) “22% of Millennials say they usually post pictures of food on social media when visiting restaurants.”
4) “33% of consumers strongly agree that health is very important in their decision of which restaurant to visit.”
5) “44% tend to eat more healthful items during the week, compared to 17% who do so during the weekend.”
6) “27% of women would like restaurants to offer smaller portion sizes for indulgent beverages.”
7) “41% of consumers are likely to substitute healthier sides at restaurants if they are available.”

These statistics were found through nationally represented surveys presented by Technomic’s consumer research team. For more information on the latest consumer trends check out Technomic’s website.
Information for this post was pulled from an article found here.