5 ways to think like a restaurateur

Published in FSD Update


Every May during the National Restaurant Association Show, FoodService Director takes several busloads of noncommercial operators on a restaurant tour to scout trends from Chicago’s hottest new eateries.

Besides leaving with full stomachs and satisfied palates, foodservice directors on our annual Taste the Trends tour, sponsored by Basic American Foods, also walk away with a camera full of new ideas to take back to their own operations. Here is a roundup from this year’s savory scouting mission.

1. Theme your action stations


Food halls—those upscale food courts popping up in cities from Los Angeles to Atlanta—typically sell themselves on the wide array of choices on offer, from pizza to noodles to sandwiches. But Latinicity, Chicago’s newest iteration and the kickoff stop on this year’s Taste the Trends tour, showcases the variety within one type of cuisine. Here, a dozen food stalls all dish out different Latin street foods, such as Peruvian ceviche, Brazilian steaks and Mexican fish tacos. Yet the concept is not overly strict in its authenticity, expanding the mix to also include burgers and hot dogs with a Latin twist.

Latinicity also is proving its viability beyond lunch—which is expectedly strong—finding a surprising value-add in marketing its ethnic-focused format for brunch and special events.


More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

Sodexo has appointed Satya Menard as global CEO of its schools and universities segments.

Menard has been with Sodexo for 20 years, holding senior roles within the company such as CEO of benefits and rewards services for Central Europe and CEO of Central and South America for on-site services.

Most recently, Menard was CEO of service operations, a capacity in which he coordinated internal support to operations including service experts in facilities management, food, supply chain and information services and technology.

Menard will transition to the role beginning...

Sponsored Content
little caesars

From PODS ®.

Headquartered in Detroit, Michigan, Little Caesars® is the largest carryout-only pizza chain in the United States. Founded in 1959 as a single, family-owned restaurant, Little Caesars has become the third largest pizza chain in the world with stores in 23 countries and territories worldwide, including in each of the 50 U.S. states. Each day it serves more than three million pizzas to its customers.

All the equipment used by Little Caesars is supplied by Blue Line Distribution, a wholly owned subsidiary of the restaurant franchise. This includes foodservice...

Industry News & Opinion

A new law in Washington will expand Breakfast After the Bell programs throughout the state, the Daily Fly reports.

Signed into law on Wednesday by Gov. Jay Inslee, HB 1508 requires that schools in which at least 70% of students qualify for free or reduced-price meals offer Breakfast After the Bell by the time the 2019-2020 school year begins.

The food offered at breakfast must meet federal nutrition standards and can’t be made up of more than 25% added sugar. Schools must also give preference to food that is fresh and grown in the state.

The breakfast period can...

Industry News & Opinion

The University of Southern California in Los Angeles will begin offering fresh kosher meals three times a week at its USC Village Dining Hall, the Daily Trojan reports.

The meals will be delivered to the dining hall every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evening by a local kosher butcher beginning March 20. The butcher will also deliver sandwiches, salads and other kosher items to a marketplace on campus.

Around 15 Orthodox students who are on meal plans will be able to enjoy the meals, according to the Daily Trojan. Students can receive their meals at the cashier’s desk in...

FSD Resources