Extra Serving

This podcast will share ideas from restaurant innovators on leadership, food trends, technology and ... more

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Latest Episodes

June 24, 2022 00:39:32
NRN editors discuss Chick-fil-A’s new drive-thru idea, the revolving door of restaurant CEOs, Chipotle’s possible union

NRN editors discuss Chick-fil-A’s new drive-thru idea, the revolving door of restaurant CEOs, Chipotle’s possible union

This week on the Extra Serving podcast, a production of Nation’s Restaurant News, NRN editors Holly Petre, Leigh Anne Zinsmeister and Sam Oches discussed the possible union at Chipotle.   On Wednesday, Chipotle followed in the footsteps of Starbucks when one store in Augusta, Maine filed for union recognition. The NRN editors discussed what this could mean for the brand and why this was not a surprising move considering recent labor challenges.   Next, the team discussed Chick-fil-A’s new drive-thru idea: mobile order lanes. While not anything revolutionary, it does speed up the Chick-fil-A drive-thru time, something the team comments is already impressively fast. The team talked about how this could impact future units and how Chick-fil-A is able to remain a Top 5 brand while only staying open six days a week.   Lastly, the team discussed the revolving door of restaurant CEOs. This week, Red Robin CEO Paul Murphy announced he will retire at the end of the year. While an expected move, it brought up questions about The Great Resignation among restaurant CEOs and whether now is a good or bad time to find a new job in the C-suite.   This week’s interview is with Applebee’s president John Cywinski, who spoke to NRN editor Ron Ruggless about the chain’s recent foray into music with songs such as “Fancy Like.” ...

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June 17, 2022 01:05:15
NRN editors discuss the cult of celebrity chefs, the Wendyverse, Chipotle’s new walk-up windows, Panera’s new format

NRN editors discuss the cult of celebrity chefs, the Wendyverse, Chipotle’s new walk-up windows, Panera’s new format

This week on the Extra Serving podcast, a product of Nation’s Restaurant News, NRN editors Holly Petre, Sam Oches, Leigh Anne Zinsmeister and Bret Thorn spoke about the cult of celebrity chefs.   Last week, on In the Kitchen with Bret Thorn, Thorn spoke with celebrity chef Rocco DiSpirito and the team went into what it means to be a celebrity chef and how it impacts your restaurant and your world.   The team also discussed Panera’s new prototype in Chicago that’s to-go only. The fast-casual restaurant known for soups and salads and a more sit-down friendly atmosphere is following the trends and where its consumers are – 80% of the chain’s orders in 2021 were made through off-premises channels.   Also, the team talked about Chipotle’s new walk-up windows. The chain is creating “human lanes” instead of drive-thru lanes in urban environments where drive-thru lanes are not possible. The team, mostly based in urban areas, discussed how they like the idea.   Finally, the team discussed the new addition to the Wendyverse, Sunrise City. The new element in the metaverse for the quick-service chain allows the user to play games based on the breakfast daypart. The team discussed how Wendy’s is far ahead of other companies when it comes to the metaverse.   This week’s guest is Owen Klein, head of menu development for CKE, parent to Carl’s Jr and Hardee’s, who spoke with Thorn about menu development for the chains’ new Jurassic Park-themed menus. ...

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June 10, 2022 00:42:46
NRN editors discuss Taco Bell’s state-of-the-art drive thru, Starbucks’ new CEO hunt

NRN editors discuss Taco Bell’s state-of-the-art drive thru, Starbucks’ new CEO hunt

This week on the Extra Serving podcast, a production of Nation’s Restaurant News, NRN editors Holly Petre, Sam Oches and Leigh Anne Zinsmeister spoke about Taco Bell’s new drive-thru that opened on Tuesday. Taco Bell, along with a slew of other restaurant chains, introduced this “restaurant of the future” prototype in 2020 during the height of the pandemic, sensing consumer needs would be changing in the long term. The new design is a drive-thru only unit, like the prototypes many others created but have yet to materialize during 2020 and 2021. The team also discussed Starbucks’ new search for a CEO, which the company announced would be an outside hire who would be named in the fall, starting in Q1. The team speculates who it could be and what industry the potential hire could come from, plus whether or not they will be a restaurant veteran gaining this highly coveted job. Finally, for this week’s interview, Oches sat down with Aaron Noveshen, founder and CEO of San Francisco-based Starbird, at the National Restaurant Association Show where they discussed trends in the industry and what’s up next. ...

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June 03, 2022 00:09:33
Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers chief experience officer Scott Redler on what the fast-casual restaurant chain has learned during the pandemic

Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers chief experience officer Scott Redler on what the fast-casual restaurant chain has learned during the pandemic

Today on Extra Serving, a Nation’s Restaurant News podcast, we have a special episode from last week’s National Restaurant Association Show. NRN managing editor Leigh Anne Zinsmeister sat down with Scott Redler, chief experience officer at Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers, to talk about what the fast-casual chain has learned during the pandemic and what’s ahead for the brand. Redler talked about Freddy’s advantages going into the pandemic, how it accelerated the innovations its customers were most eager for, and the surprising part of the business that has been impacted most by recent supply-chain struggles. Redler also talks about the company’s future, and its expansion into non-traditional units including colleges, casinos and most recently, an airport. ...

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May 27, 2022 00:37:34
NRN editors discuss a possible Wendy’s sale, Fat Brands’ latest acquisition, and Starbucks’ exit from Russia

NRN editors discuss a possible Wendy’s sale, Fat Brands’ latest acquisition, and Starbucks’ exit from Russia

This week on the Extra Serving podcast, a production of Nation’s Restaurant News, NRN editors Holly Petre, Sam Oches, and Leigh Anne Zinsmeister discuss Starbucks’ exit from Russia. Starbucks joined McDonald’s and made the official move to exit Russia this week. The team discusses what it means for the brand and what it means for companies to take a stand on issues like this, DEI issues and the recent shooting in Texas. The team also discussed Fat Brands’ latest acquisition of Nestle Toll House Café by Chip. After acquiring multiple brands in 2021 and an indication at the ICR conference in January that they didn’t intend to purchase more, Fat Brands surprised everyone with this recent move. The team discusses what it means and gives an overview of the year in M&A deals so far. It wasn’t mentioned in the podcast, but the biggest acquisition from 2021 was arguably Restaurant Brands International’s purchase of Firehouse Subs, on par with Inspire Brands’ purchase of Dunkin’ the year before.  Finally, the team discussed the possible sale of Wendy’s and the idea that this public company could go private after being public for so long. What does it mean that the brand’s biggest investor is exploring a purchase of the brand? Would it make it the largest M&A deal of the year? The team discusses. This week’s interview is Oath Pizza’s director of supply chain and product innovation Pamela McMorrow. Joanna Fantozzi and McMorrow speak about the topic on everyone’s mind: supply chain challenges. ...

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May 24, 2022 00:23:11
NRN editors discuss single-seat cars, lessons learned during the pandemic, industry resiliency during Day 3 of the National Restaurant Association Show

NRN editors discuss single-seat cars, lessons learned during the pandemic, industry resiliency during Day 3 of the National Restaurant Association Show

Today on Extra Serving, a Nation’s Restaurant News podcast, NRN editors Holly Petre, Sam Oches, Leigh Anne Zinsmeister and Lisa Jennings spoke about lessons restaurants learned during the pandemic.  Zinsmeister and Oches spent the show talking directly to operators (some videos available here and here) so they shared some of the lessons that they’ve been hearing operators have learned over the past two years — and which they’ll take with them into the new future. The team also discussed the resiliency of the industry throughout this time, whether by creative solutions to the labor crisis, like today’s podcast guest, or by innovations in technology or a host of other things. Jennings spoke about the emergence of single-seat cars — which were on display at the show in Lakeside — and the innovation of the car for delivery. The cars can park in motorcycle spots and go up to 80 miles per hour, yet the driver doesn’t need a motorcycle license to operate it. Then, hear a conversation between Zinsmeister and FB Society CEO Jack Gibbons, who talks about leaning into his company’s “unicorns” — the things that differentiate the experiential brands — at a time when most companies were running in the other direction. ...

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