Chelsea Market Lands a Promising New Pop-Up Vendor

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“A new pop-up space in Chelsea Market will highlight Ethiopian fast casual this summer. The NYC-based culinary training nonprofit Hot Bread Kitchen has a new pop-up space in Chelsea Market that will feature rotating menus from members and alums of its culinary incubator, which is based in East Harlem. First up is Gorsha, a fast-casual Ethiopian restaurant from Hiyaw Gebreyohannes. There is another location in DC’s Union Market, but here, the restaurant will have specials specific to Chelsea Market. There will be build-your-own bowls for around $13 with proteins like berbere chicken and braised lamb. It’s open now from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. and will run until October 31.”

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McDonald’s Spent $50 Million on TV Advertising in April

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“McDonald’s easily led all companies in TV ad spend last month for the second time in 2019, spending $50 million to promote its new any size $1 soft drink limited time offer, and mix and match 2 for $5 deal to customers.

The Illinois-based chain last topped the list in February when it introduced bacon as a new topping on its signature burgers. McDonald’s was pressed by analysts last week on its first quarter earnings call about when it would also delve into the growing plant-based food trend, which rival Burger King has tapped into with Impossible Foods. CEO Steve Easterbrook said McDonald’s is currently weighing additional complexities of launching its own product, while also assessing the sustainability of the consumer trend.

“Our menu teams are clearly paying close attention to it,” said Easterbrook. “They are discussing this amongst each other and with some of the options that are out there. So maybe more to come, but nothing much to say about it in the moment.”

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Burgers still America’s favorite sandwich, chicken gaining ground

Image result for Burgers still America's favorite sandwich, chicken gaining ground“Burgers have been a top item ordered at U.S. restaurants for decades, but chicken sandwiches have come on strong over the last several years, according to The NPD Group receipt-harvesting service, Checkout, which tracks the same buyers’ purchasing behaviors over time. It found that although chicken sandwiches were still behind burgers in the sandwich pecking order, they were gaining ground. Over the 12 months ending February 2019, chicken sandwich orders were up 4% at 4 billion serving, but burger orders were flat at 8.6 billion ordered.

By the numbers, the average number of times a customer purchased a burger at a restaurant over the same period was 14.7 times, and the customer purchase frequency of chicken sandwiches was 8.7. Burgers also have the upper hand when it comes to menu importance or the percentage of all restaurant orders that include one. Burgers were included in 14.1% of all restaurant orders and chicken sandwiches were included in 6.5% of orders.”

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Joaquin Baca’s Teo and Günter Seeger NY Both Close After Short Runs

“(…) Short-lived restaurants don’t get the same treatment, for obvious reasons, but it’s still unfortunate when ambitious places from established players fizzle out fast. There are all kinds of reasons why these closings happen. But it’s still a bummer to hear that Bushwick’s Teo has closed after just five months of serving cast-iron-skillet okonomiyakis.

The closing came out of nowhere, given what the restaurant had going for it. It wasn’t a rookie chef’s project. The owner was Joaquin Baca, who was David Chang’s first employee at Momofuku Noodle Bar and helped right the ship at Ssäm Bar after a rocky start. Baca helped shape Momofuku in its earliest years before going on to open Williamsburg’s the Brooklyn Star, which closed in May after nine years in Williamsburg. He’s a talented chef who was cooking food people want to eat; short rib over kimchee fried rice, oysters coated in cornmeal and then fried, a confit duck-leg ramen. The news was announced on the restaurant’s Instagram and website, but no reason was given.

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Climate change tax for dining out? California restaurants add 1% fee to the bill

Hundreds of new restaurants open in the U.S. each year. These are the best of 2018

“Eating out is already getting more expensive, as restaurants nationwide raise prices to cover rising rents and employee costs.

Now, some California diners will get hit with a climate change tax.

Spurred by a Bay Area restaurateur, eateries across the state will have the option this fall of joining the Restore California Renewable Restaurant program, which adds 1% to the bill. The program is optional for restaurants and consumers alike. Funds from the initiative go to help farmers make changes in their fields that would help capture carbon dioxide. CO2 is considered among the chief contributors to climate change.”

“The new initiative comes against a backdrop of rising dining prices. In January, full-service restaurant prices were up 2.7 percent from a year earlier, well above the 1.6 percent annual rise for inflation overall, according to the consumer price index.”

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Starbucks Launches Summer LTOs

“It’s already summer at Starbucks as the chain brought back three of its limited-time Frappuccino flavors this week and also created a few other LTOs. The Frappuccino optons include the:

  • S’mores Frappuccino, which combines marshmallow whipped cream and milk chocolate sauce along with a blend of coffee, milk and ice. It’s finished off with more whipped cream and a graham cracker crumble.
  • Mocha Cookie Crumble Frappuccino, made with mocha sauce and Frappuccino chips blended with coffee, milk and ice layered on top of whipped cream and chocolate cookie crumble and finished off with whipped cream and chocolate cookie crumbles.
  • Caramel Ribbon Crunch Frappuccino, a dark caramel sauce blended with coffee, milk and ice on top of whipped cream and dark caramel sauce then topped with another layer of dark caramel sauce, whipped cream, caramel drizzle  and crunchy caramel sugar topping.”

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Beyond Meat’s Pending IPO Could Be Valued at $1.2 Billion

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“Beyond Meat Inc., the maker of vegan chicken and beef substitutes backed by some of the biggest names in food and technology, is seeking to raise as much as $184 million in its initial public offering.

The company plans to sell 8.75 million shares for $19 to $21 each, according to a filing Monday with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. A listing at the top of that range would give the company a market value of about $1.2 billion based on the shares to be outstanding after the offer, according to its filing.

The company is one of several makers of plant-based meat substitutes or lab-grown meats that have attracted high-profile backers. Its investors include Microsoft Corp. co-founder Bill Gates and actor Leonardo Dicaprio, as well as former McDonald’s Corp. chief executive officer Don Thompson. Beyond Meat’s biggest stakeholders are venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers LLC, which owns 16 percent of the company, and Twitter Inc. co-founder Ev William’s Obvious Ventures with 9 percent, according to its filings.

Tyson Foods Inc., the largest U.S. meat producer, is accelerating development of its own alternative-protein products and is also a backer of Beyond Meat. Tyson has invested in Jerusalem-based Future Meat Technologies and, along with Gates, Richard Branson and Cargill Inc., is an investor in Memphis Meats, a cultured meat producer.”

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