🍸Cocktail trends changing the restaurant scene

5 min read
🍸Cocktail trends changing the restaurant scene

Less space in restaurants could mean more room for creativity and revenue growth -- but how do you know when it's time to download your physical space? Pull up a chair for today's edition of The Prep.

On the menu:

🍹Evolving the modern cocktail
⏰Combatting labor shortages
🥑 Bruges beckons global foodies 
🍕 Pizza toppings spur debate

Will you downsize in the near future?
Many restaurant operators are now prioritizing smaller footprints for setting up new locations. By doing so, they can reduce both construction and operational costs while providing a great customer experience. Factors like off-premises dining and the need for adaptability in a constantly changing market are driving this trend. Therefore, it may be worth exploring this approach to optimize your business and potentially attract new customers looking for efficient and convenient dining options.
Read more at Nation’s Restaurant News.

🎧 How I Built This, Episode 569

Automation inspires tomorrow's restaurants today

 Chipotle founder Steve Ells has launched a plant-based restaurant called Kernel in New York City. It uses robotics to prepare meals, reducing labor needs and has a smaller footprint for takeout/delivery to lower operating costs. The menu is plant-based for environmental benefits, and the smaller team receives higher wages due to the tech implementation. Early results show high demand and positive feedback. Ells hopes to inspire others to replicate the model for sustainability in the industry.

 Listen to the full episode here.

While familiar cocktail classics are making a comeback with a twist, several exciting new directions are gaining momentum when it comes to cocktail specialties. In New York City, Umami flavors are taking center stage, with bartenders drawing inspiration from chefs to create unique and delicious concoctions. Crowd favorites include: “Japanese Cold Noodle” (Bacardi Superior, pineapple, cucumber, coconut, lime and sesame oil) and “Cold Pizza” (Don Fulano Blanco, Parmigiano Reggiano, burnt toast tomato, basil honey and egg white).

Learn about the cocktail trends at Forbes.

The right way to use tech to manage labor shortages

Restaurants increasingly use tech tools to combat labor challenges, which can make operations more efficient and allow staff to focus on high-value customer interactions. Explore automation for repetitive tasks, online ordering and self-service kiosks to manage customer flow, and even AI-powered inventory management to free up your team for what matters most: providing exceptional service. By embracing technology, restaurant owners can thrive even in a competitive labor market.

 Learn more at Modern Restaurant Management.

Sports bars meet demand for women's athletics

The popularity of women's sports is surging, creating a new opportunity for bars and restaurants. The first women's sports bar in the Midwest recently opened in Minneapolis, capitalizing on growing attendance records and revenue in women's athletics. Industry experts predict continued growth in women's sports, with revenue projected to reach $1.28 billion in 2024.

Gain more insight at MPR News.

The medieval town where food reigns supreme
Bruges, a captivating medieval town in Belgium, is a paradise for history buffs and food enthusiasts. Foodies can wander its charming cobbled streets, lined with preserved gothic buildings, and be enveloped by the irresistible aroma of chocolate. Whether you're seeking Michelin-starred excellence or cozy cafes, Bruges caters to every palate and budget. Enjoy fluffy waffles drizzled with syrup at The House of Waffles or savory delights like mussels in white wine or crispy fries from Fritbar. With its rich history, charming streets, and delectable cuisine, Bruges promises an unforgettable experience.

Explore more at Irish Examiner.

A pinch of this and that

🚀 IHOP and Applebee's mull US merger

🍕 Wendy's scrambles to explain pricing strategy

🥪 Chuck E. Cheese tests rewards membership

🍽️ Breakfast pizza enters the zeitgeist

🍽️ Philly restaurant nabs Beard award

When is it time to take your operations down a notch -- at least as far as your space is concerned? With real estate and utility prices rising, it only makes sense that restaurant owners and managers look for ways to think smaller in terms of physical space.

Have you successfully downsized your restaurant space? I'd love to hear about it.

From consumer trends to emerging technology that will improve your operations -- The Prep offers weekly insight into what is driving the bar and restaurant industries.

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We’re looking forward to connecting with you each week – thanks for coming to the table for The Prep.