New on the Menu: Jack in the Box’s Late-Night Proposition

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“Jack in the Box is expanding its “french fries in a box” concept to two more potato, fat, and dairy concoctions that would make any cardiologist squirm. In the company’s defense, they’re going to try just about anything to keep their franchisees happy right now. Also in Jack’s defense? It doesn’t have the meal in this installment that must worry doctors the most.

Every few weeks Skift Table will wrap up the latest seasonal and new items on chain restaurant menus in the United States. We don’t call out everything (sorry limited-time Pumpkin Spice something), but we will call out items that are notable for what they mean to a chain, the season, or consumer habits.”

See more here.

Taiwanese Fried Chicken and Bubble Tea Head to the Flatiron District

This new eat-in, take-out spot is a Taiwanese doubleheader. Kung Fu Tea, a Taiwanese-style bubble tea company that started in 2010 in Flushing, Queens, and now has 200 outlets in 30 states, has joined forces with TKK Fried Chicken, a chain founded in 1974 in Taiwan. The Taiwanese recipe called “original” on the menu is crisp and moderately spiced. There is also a milder version and, for the American market, a crisper, more forcefully seasoned one. How is this fried chicken different from the Korean variety found all over New York? “Taiwanese fried chicken is first marinated for 24 hours to add flavor,” said Steven Luw, the general operating manager. “Then it gets a flour breading and is fried once. Korean fried chicken is usually dipped in batter and fried twice.” The company, which will count this location as its first American restaurant in addition to the 68 branches it has in Taiwan and Shanghai, is also offering items that are not on the menu in Asia, including curly fries, a fried chicken sandwich, chunky coleslaw, Wisconsin-style cheese curds, biscuits and seared shishito peppers. The bubble tea partnership provides many colorful teas with optional toppings like red beans and crushed Oreos, served at varying sweetness, iced to hot.”

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Shake Shack Sees Same-Store Sales Dip

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Shake Shack, once the darling of better-burger brands, continues to show signs of struggle in the sector as it reported a same-store sales decline this week.

Comps decreased 0.7% for the quarter ended Sept. 26, while total revenue rose 26.5% and sales increased 27.2%.
Shake Shack stock prices tumbled more than 11% on the news early Friday.
During the quarter, Shake Shack opened seven company-operated stores and two licensed units.

The brand expects to launch its largest number of new stores in history in 2019, with plans to open 36 to 40 units, executives said during a call with analysts Thursday.
The company drew concern from investors following its announcement in August that it was suffering from a logjam in unit expansion, stalling growth until the later part of 2018.

Read more here.