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Fries Get Funkier as Chains Limit LTOs

Fries Get Funkier as Chains Limit LTOs

Quick-service chains have slowed the rate of major LTO introductions. Fewer new creative entrees are joining menus as chains seek to avoid adding new ingredients or complicating operations. So where’s the innovation? Fries. With protein prices high, burger chains and others are looking at new ways to make french fries—a famously high-profit menu item that […]

Are Burgers Behind the Buffalo Sauce Surge?

We ate 1.25 billion chicken wings during Super Bowl XVIII, a good portion of them with spicy Buffalo sauce, no doubt. The same was true of the 13.5 billion wings the National Chicken Council estimated Americans ate in 2012. Buffalo sauce has been with us for years and it seems to be everywhere. But in […]

2014 Burger Trends Forecast: Freshness & Loyalty

2014 Burger Trends Forecast: Freshness & Loyalty

No, the “burger boom” still isn’t over. It remains vital and appealing to both consumers and entrepreneurs. Burgers are culinary survivors: They can adapt no matter where mainstream tastes flow. If Peruvian-Korean fusion cuisine or heirloom tomatoes are what strike diners’ fancies, burgers can handle them. Given the culinary and business currents we’re already seeing, […]

Pretzel Burgers Can’t Save Ruby Tuesday

Pretzel Burgers Can’t Save Ruby Tuesday

Pretzel-bun burgers may be all the rage, but they couldn’t keep casual-dining chain Ruby Tuesday from a double-digit debacle. For its fiscal quarter ended Sept. 3, 2013, the casual-dining chain reported an 11.4% plunge in same-store sales at company restaurants. The dive came despite the chain’s biggest menu rollout in the last seven years. On […]

Updating the Summer’s Burger Trends

Updating the Summer’s Burger Trends

Here’s where we are with four trends influencing the burger business:  BLT: Bacon mania has, not surprisingly, brought a renaissance for the BLT sandwich. BLT burgers had to follow and they have. McDonald’s first tried a Quarter Pounder BLT in Japan, then moved it to Canada. Now the QP BLT is offered across Texas, North […]

Can Suggestive Selling Save McDonald’s?

Can Suggestive Selling Save McDonald’s?

Would you like an order of high-profit fries with that? McDonald’s Corp. says it is using more suggestive selling at U.S. restaurant counters to combat “challenged” sales. It likely will take much more than that to keep McDonald’s growing, but CEO Don Thompson offered no new tactical shifts when asked during today’s earnings call what […]

Fries Moving From Side to Topping

Fries Moving From Side to Topping

The question “Want fries with that?” is being replaced by “Want fries on that?” as the never-ending search for new toppings moves fries from the side to the top. Pizza Hut Canada this week introduced Cheesy Beef Poutine pan-crust pizza topped with a poutine-like combo of fries, seasoned steak, cheese curds and mozzarella. That mimics […]

Buffalo Wings Its Way Onto Burger Menus

Buffalo Wings Its Way Onto Burger Menus

Is bison poised to succeed lamb as the next hip, hot burger protein? Given The Counter’s decision this week to make bison a permanent build-your-own-burger option coupled with Red Robin Gourmet Burgers’ revelation that it is considering a new line of premium Kobe beef and perhaps bison burgers, the all-American protein seems positioned for appearances […]

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