Fast Casual Takes Early Lead in Technology Race

Fast casual, the clear standout segment of the restaurant industry for the past decade, has had several advantages contributing to its growth and to its gains in market share at the expense of quick-service and casual-dining brands. Consumers have been drawn to fast casual’s service, ingredient quality and price point, and now, with the latest […]

Mashups Disrupt Menus

Mashup food items are currently at the center of menu innovation, especially at the QSR level. These mashups cause quite a stir in the press and are often backed by large publicity and multimedia campaigns. Most are limited-time offers or test items but some are launched as permanent menu items. They are meant to garner […]

Fast-Casual Pizza: A Familiar Growth Story, with a Twist

The rise of build-your-own pizza is reminiscent of the explosive growth over the past five years of the better-burger segment. But there is an important difference. Unlike traditional quick-service burger chains, which have struggled to defend their traffic and market share from this new fast-casual competition, most of the giant pizza chains are growing sales […]

Pizza Hut Swings for the Fences

Pizza Hut’s unveiling this week of a complete brand overhaul sheds fresh light on the big choices restaurants face in keeping up with changing consumer tastes. The question will be whether it’s an example of “too much, too late” or of reaching beyond what core customers and restaurant staff want or can handle. Bucking a trend […]