40 East 23rd Street • 212.533.8800


Their Success

There is no doubt that Hale and Hearty has become a mainstay fast-casual destination in New York City since opening its first location in 1995. The popular chain, known for its variety of soups, also boasts an array of sandwiches and a custom salad bar, appealing to New Yorker’s health conscious and on-the-go lifestyles.

While extremely popular, Hale and Hearty certainly doesn’t fit the mold of the most recent stars of the fast-casual world. There is no advertisement of organic and sustainable ingredients, no trendy menu, or flashy signage. Instead, the Company has made their stores and products accessible for their guests, striking just the right balance of consistency and variety.

Hale and Hearty soups are considered a focal product group. There are 6 staple items on the menu, which are available at any of their 31 NYC locations. Each location will typically offer an additional 12 rotating soup options providing guests with a different selection at every visit but a sense reliability as well. Popular menu staples include Ten Vegetable, Chicken Noodle and Tomato Basil – menu items that are recognizable and familiar to most everyone. Rotating selections include more international flavors and ingredients which give unique options for guests but also allow the company to discontinue if less than successful. Guests are encouraged to try a sample prior to ordering which facilitates even repeat guests to try new items.

The sandwich menu follows a similar model with a larger percentage of staple items and a few that rotate seasonally. The salad bar offers custom ordering with a fixed list of salad toppings and dressings. This gives guests the option for variety but allows for consistency in production. Each Hale and Hearty location is similar in size, layout and organization with consistency in ordering and service. Although rotating menu items might vary per store on any given day, the Hale and Hearty website offers a full menu for each retail location that is updated daily.

Take Aways

Hale and Hearty successfully focuses on a single product group (soup) and offers it in many variations. When considering the product mix of your enterprise, remember who your target guest is and how can provide the most valuable offering both efficiently and effectively. There is no way to please everyone, so stay true to your concept and to your audience.

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