Industry News Roundup - October 3, 2014
Friday, October 03, 2014
MICHELIN stars are awarded, Living Wage Requirements are expanded in NYC, and charging for tap water is discussed; Each week we will share with you a recap of important topics in the press. Stay tuned to stay informed.
Amanda Cohen Breaks Down the 'Us VS. Them' Mentality in Restaurants
Here now, chef Amanda Cohen takes a break from moving her NYC restaurant Dirt Candy to a bigger space to tackle the lack of trust between restaurants and their customers.
Hotels to Fight L.A. Minimum Wage Ordinance
Los Angeles Business Journal 10/1
As a press conference Wednesday, hotel industry executives announced they were filing a request for all public records related to the council’s consideration of the ordinance. The executives said they hope the records will yield information that can bolster an expected legal challenge to the ordinance.
Food & Wine Confirms All Women's Issue for January 2015
An increasing number of publications are poking at the glass ceiling in the kitchen: Food & Wine confirmed this morning that they will dedicate their January 2015 issue to Women in Food. Taking a hint from megastar/reigning girl power champion Beyoncé, a spokesperson wrote that the publication "is dedicating the January issue to the women who rule the food world."
Exclusive: Olive Garden Server Representing Restaurant’s Employees Says "Things Need To Change"
As the heated battle between Darden Restaurants and hedge fund Starboard Capital comes to a head, an Olive Garden employee representing the restaurant’s workers spoke exclusively to BuzzFeed News about what life at the chain is really like. “There are things that need to change.”
Even Conservatives Support a Wage Hike for Restaurant Workers
The results of a new Technomic poll seem to indicate that people who are opposed to raising the minimum wage for restaurant workers most likely spend a lot of time being very loud and eating a lot of instant ramen at home: A poll of 1,000 restaurant goers revealed that "93 percent of self-described liberals, 87 percent of moderates and 70 percent of conservatives" support the idea of getting the lowest-paid members of the fast-food workforce a state-mandated raise.
Watch Blue Hill's Dan Barber Advocate Beyond Farm-to-Table
The problem, Barber suggests, is that responsible agriculture lacks a language that describes "the nuts and bolts of good farming... it's about a thousand times more complicated than anything I could do in my kitchen." Watch as Barber describes everything from soil replenishment to crop rotation in his effort lay down a language that may help fuel future "farm-to-table" conversations.
2015 New York Michelin Guide Highlights Brooklyn, Queens Restaurants
New York’s culinary world continues to gain recognition beyond Manhattan, with 11 out of 20 new one- and two-starred restaurants in the 2015 New York Michelin guide coming from Brooklyn and Queens.
New York's Michelin-Starred Restaurants Announced For 2015
Forbes Life 9/30
Michelin Travel Publications released New York City’s 2015 Michelin Guide today, which included the results of its highly anticipated star selection. Since the guide was launched in 2005, it has awarded stars to just 126 of New York’s thousands of restaurants.
New Michelin Guide Has New York Star-Studded
NY Times 9/30
Michelin Guide Upgrades Aquavit, Blanca and Ichimura to Two Stars, Daniel Loses Third Star
Here Are the 2015 Michelin Stars for New York City
The little red guidebook announced its "Bib Gourmand" picks for New York City last week, and this afternoon Michelin published its collection of starred restaurants for its 2015 guide.
California becomes first state to ban plastic bags
Associated Press 9/30
Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday signed the nation's first statewide ban on single-use plastic bags at grocery and convenience stores, driven to action by pollution in streets and waterways.
National Restaurant Association Announces Member Discounts Through UnitedHealthcare®
The National Restaurant Association (NRA) announced exclusive member discounts from UnitedHealthcare on manual medical rates for fully insured business groups with 51 or more eligible employees. Through NRA’s Health Care HQ, members can access potential savings of up to five percent on UnitedHealthcare’s standard medical product portfolio, which offers a broad range of plan designs and options through its vast care provider network. Note that some restrictions apply; and discounts may vary by location and group size.
Vending Machines Go Farm Fresh
Modern Farmer 9/29
How can we make it easier to buy local foods? It’s a question that’s plagued everyone from farmers market organizers to food activists to state governments.
Americans snack differently than other nations
USA Today 9/29
While Americans snack a bit differently from the rest of the world, with a special penchant for chips, the simple snack — from a candy bar to a piece of fruit to a granola bar — now permeates the globe as it increasingly replaces breakfast, lunch and dinner in households from Houston to Hanoi.
This Restaurant Gives a Gun Discount to Customers Who Prove They’re Armed
Gun-loving and food-establishment-owning Louisiana resident Kevin Cox is running a special deal at his place, Bergeron's Boudin & Cajun Meats of Port Allen, which rewards his like-minded customers: If you pack heat in addition to eating it, he says, you'll get a a 10 percent discount on all your sausage, stuffed hamburger, and po' boy needs.
You Can Buy the Post Office’s Famous-Chef Stamps Today
Food-loving philatelists, today's the big day: The Postal Service has released five classy Forever stamps honoring legendary chefs who were "early — and ardent — champions of trends that many foodies now take for granted."
Emeril Lagasse on the Economy and ‘Obama Nonsense’
Emeril Lagasse may be a household name, with numerous restaurants, cookbooks and television shows under his belt, but even the veteran chef is struggling in this economy. “I have nowhere to really go other than broke,” he said at an event promoting his new cooking-competition show, “On the Menu,” which premieres Oct. 3 on TNT. “It’s becoming a very challenging industry to becoming a very successful average restaurateur.”
NEW YORK CITY
You’ll Never Guess the Cleanest Fast Food Joint in NYC
I Quant NY 10/1
While walking around NYC, I invariable pass fast food restaurants in many neighborhoods. It’s inevitable. And when it comes to fast food, different people have varying reactions to these establishments. Some are fans, others stay far away.
World Chefs: Dufresne prepares end of NYC modernist mecca
Chef Wylie Dufresne is preparing to close his 11-year-old wd-50 restaurant, which has been a New York mecca for food enthusiasts to taste cutting-edge dishes. Dufresne's inventive applications of molecular gastronomy, or techniques that can radically alter the appearance or texture of food, have influenced other chefs and helped transform the menus at other top restaurants. But the landlord's decision to tear down the building means the end of the pioneering restaurant.
Mayor to tenants at city-subsidized projects: Pay up
Mayor Bill de Blasio signed an executive order Tuesday raising the hourly wage for thousands of workers at retail developments that accept city subsidies by 10% to $13.13, from $11.90, for employees without benefits. Significantly, it also expands the mandate to employees of commercial tenants at future subsidized projects.
(NYS Restaurant Association Quoted)
Critics question Mayor de Blasio's living wage order
NY Daily News 9/30
As Mayor de Blasio signed an order Tuesday to dramatically expand the city’s living wage requirement, he drew criticism from some business groups and Council members upset he made an end run around that body.
(NYS Restaurant Association Quoted)
De Blasio’s Executive Order Will Expand Living Wage Law to Thousands More
NY Times 9/29
Mayor Bill de Blasio plans to sign an executive order on Tuesday significantly expanding New York City’s living wage law, covering thousands of previously exempt workers and raising the hourly wage itself, to $13.13 from $11.90, for workers who do not receive benefits.
How Nobu’s Most Famous Dish Helped Launch a Global Restaurant Empire
Yet there were signs two decades ago, when the very first Nobu opened at 105 Hudson Street: The soy-slicked fish was a must-order, called out even in the restaurant's earliest reviews.
RESOURCES & GUIDES
9 tips on how to handle the media
Hotel News Now 9/30
When we hear that someone is “always on message,” that's typically a sign the speaker is adept at using the media to advance his or her agenda. Being effective with the press starts with this simple but sometimes difficult-to-master concept. What other good rules of thumb can you employ to maximize your encounters with the media?
How to build your best restaurant team
Nation’s restaurant News 9/29
Consistency in hiring, training and development is the most effective profitability strategy
TRENDS & TECHNOLOGY
Prepare to start paying for tap water
In recent years, reports have surfaced that all sorts of restaurants — from fast-food joints to fine-dining establishments — are charging for water in various ways. Some do make patrons buy bottles, some charge for a cup and some simply tack on a water (or filtration) “surcharge.”
Controversial Surge Pricing Comes to Food Delivery App Sprig
Surge pricing works by establishing a baseline for demand. Once demand increases above the baseline, the price for an average Uber goes up. Likewise, most people want to eat lunch between noon and 2 p.m. Dynamic delivery pricing punishes that common desire.
Yelp and TripAdvisor Challenge Google's Search Supremacy in Europe
Crowdsourced review site Yelp is continuing its rivalry with search giant Google — and this time, they're doing battle overseas. The Financial Times reports Yelp will join forces with TripAdvisor to launch a "Focus on the User" campaign in Europe, accusing Google of giving preference to its own content (like Google Places) when users seek information about restaurants. In a glossy video campaign, Focus on the User argues that "Google is hurting the internet. Europeans have the power to stop it."