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  • Asian flavours diversify menus
    comment It s no secret that Asian cuisine uses a multitude of ingredients A snapshot of the most commonly added ingredients represents a wide range of flavours Top ingredients Ginger is undoubtedly the top ingredient in Asian cuisine listed in about 8 of menu items This incidence is not surprising given the popularity of dishes such as ginger chicken pork and beef Ginger is also part of most types of Asian cooking including Chinese Thai and Japanese Sesame seeds are the second most common ingredient with an incidence of almost 7 Sesame chicken is a Chinese dish that appeals to Western tastes with its sweet flavour and smooth yet crunchy texture Sesame seeds are also often incorporated into Japanese cuisine for instance as toppings on sushi maki rolls Also known as Japanese horseradish wasabi had the third highest incidence 5 The green sharply flavoured condiment is integral to Japanese cuisine frequently accompanying sushi and sashimi and added to soy sauce Rounding out the top five ingredients are sweet and sour and soy sauces both with incidence rates close to 4 Ingredients infrequently mentioned on Asian restaurant menus in Canada include Thai dressings tea and Szechuan sauce Each of these items had just a 0 8 incidence Interestingly ginger dressing had a 1 incidence surprisingly low given ginger s overall ranking as the top ingredient on Asian menus Top flavours The 20 most popular flavours on Asian restaurant menus are all fairly well represented each with an incidence greater than 4 Appearing in nearly one fifth of Asian menu items onions are by far the most common flavour Many Asian cuisines particularly Japanese emphasize vegetables such as onions and place less importance on meat and poultry Sweet is the second most common flavour description with an almost 18 incidence Dishes like

    Original URL path: http://www.restaurantcentral.ca/Asianflavoursdiversifymenus.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Keep them coming back: Technomic examines restaurant loyalty marketing
    Chad Finkelstein Kristin Menas Liana Robberecht Jordan Knox Go Keep them coming back Technomic examines restaurant loyalty marketing Press release March 11 2013 Tweet Leave a comment In the midst of a soft economy and an industry with heightened brand competition loyalty marketing or the way in which restaurant operators market to the most faithful customers has achieved a new level of importance Loyalty marketing and rewards programs vary in terms of their size and scope but they all share one goal to recognize unwavering customers and keep them coming back Only about one third of consumers 36 per cent say they participate in a restaurant based loyalty program However 80 per cent agree they would sign up if the restaurant they visit most often offered a program This indicates opportunities for more restaurants to offer loyalty programs or to simply build awareness of existing programs and related benefits And by providing incentives for frequent use loyalty programs can also be an excellent way to turn light users into regulars We ve come a long way since the 10th meal is free punch cards says Darren Tristano Executive Vice President Consumers are now receiving rewards via email apps social media and on their smartphones As mobile marketing continues to evolve so will loyalty marketing Its direction may be unclear but the need to recognize and thank loyal customers will always be there Using industry and chain data Technomic has issued a new Market Intelligence Report that defines loyalty marketing identifies current leaders analyzes performance and identifies trends Noteworthy findings include 58 per cent of loyalty club members say they are likely to base their where to dine decision on whether they have a membership at that brand Of the consumers who say they currently participate in loyalty marketing programs membership

    Original URL path: http://www.restaurantcentral.ca/restaurantloyaltymarketing.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Fast Casual the premiumization of Quick-Service Restaurants
    that your customers are considering QSR as an alternative The emerging Fast Casual segment is a group of restaurant chains that aim to carve out a space between the strengths of QSR and Casual Dining They find a new balance between the fast service affordability and portability typical of QSR and the food quality creativity atmosphere and personal service of Casual Dining While Fast Casual has grown to capture four per cent of restaurant dollars in the U S A it has so far captured less than one per cent of restaurant spend in Canada So why is Fast Casual getting so much attention Fast Casual spend in Canada has averaged 15 per cent growth every year for the past five years at the same time Commercial Foodservice averaged a mere three per cent annual growth While QSR customers show no traffic growth for lunch or supper in the past few years Fast Casual customers are willing to spend about 30 per cent or 2 more at these dayparts The top types of foods customers are ordering at Fast Casual are from categories very familiar to QSR but there are gaps that present opportunities for further developing the segment Fast Casual is well known for serving high quality chef inspired burgers fries sushi and Mexican food However there is an opportunity to develop other popular items like sandwiches pizza coffee and baked goods Fast Casual customers also skew towards diet carbonated soft drinks bottled water and other non carbonated beverages Some operators will even serve wine and beer At the same time Fast Casual chains were moving into Canada leading QSR chains invested in driving the premiumization trend in their own way They renovated their restaurants to a standard not seen before at QSR including fireplaces televisions arm chairs and

    Original URL path: http://www.restaurantcentral.ca/fastcasualpremiumizationofQSR.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Nine grocery trends that will impact restaurant visits
    necessarily when they go out When asked for their favourite type of ethnic cuisine Canadians clearly selected Italian as number one chosen by 47 per cent of consumers with Chinese a distant second at 28 per cent However much of this preference is driven by Canadians who enjoy cooking Italian food at home When you ask what type of cultural cuisine Canadians enjoy eating at restaurants Chinese flies to the top of the list being selected almost twice as often as Italian Moreover each of Japanese Thai and Greek food are chosen for restaurant preferences more often than Italian while options like Vietnamese Indian and Mexican not far behind Look deeper into food sensitivities and preferences As noted in Restaurants Canada s Chef Survey gluten free menu options are the hottest trend in Canadian restaurants At the same time only about six per cent of consumers in our Shopper Study indicated they were following a gluten free diet While there are certainly more than that who seek out gluten free options occasionally keep dietary restrictions in perspective while being aware of all diners concerns two thirds of consumers say they have no dietary restrictions at all The organic market is rather stagnant The percentage of people who regularly order organic food products has consistently hovered just under 25 per cent the last few years and much of this is driven by fruits and vegetables So it looks like organic s not growing but neither is it going away even as consumers indicate a lot of confusion about what organic is and a belief that many companies exaggerate organic claims As above depending on the type of restaurant organics might be worth still having or pursuing but it is not for everyone As I ve discussed previously local was and still is a much bigger opportunity to connect with a much broader base of consumers Only certain types of healthy options taste good to Canadians Canadians are generally trying to eat healthier But it s not enough to offer simply offer a few healthy options at the bottom of the menu those healthy options also have to taste good When asked how healthier versions of different food and beverages compared to the traditional versions consumers indicated that some healthier options like whole grain pasta low sodium bacon and baked chips actually tasted better than the originals while others like some gluten free pasta extra lean meat and low fat ice cream tasted much worse Restaurants looking to evolve their healthy menu options should be seeking out ways to do so that minimize taste trade offs or even better create a better tasting meal Coupons from websites and email are just as popular as those received in the mail Among shoppers who used coupons on a regular basis there were just as many people using ones found online or via email as those using coupons received in the mail Given the cost difference in distributing the two it s just another reminder

    Original URL path: http://www.restaurantcentral.ca/grocerytrendsthatimpactrestaurantvisits.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Forecasting Canadian foodservice in the year 2020
    service restaurants alike and will continue to do so into 2020 Population growth that is driven mainly by immigration barely offsets these loses and creates a further challenge of understanding a new type of customer Any restaurant with goals to drive dollars growth beyond mere menu inflation will have to fight hard for it Restaurant visits are forecasted to average a mere one per cent growth a year until 2020 There is little room for error when developing strategies and tactics to grow traffic and cheque Operators and manufacturers who have a disciplined fact based approach based on consumer trends will have an advantage over those who do not Successful operators promotional deals loyalty programs and menu innovation will not be painted with a large sweeping brush but will be tailored to target specific customers and occasions with which an operator can best serve or could serve better If the title of the report didn t give it away quick service restaurants QSR will emerge as a strong segment going into 2020 That strength will be driven by a handful of particular types of occasions and menu items that meet customers growing needs for convenience and interest in quality and variety While opportunities for individual operators may differ the following are some key areas around which to tailor those customer focused strategies Off premise visits will grow emphasizing strategies to resist customers tendencies to order fewer items when on the go Lunch will be the most challenged daypart pressured by continued strength of breakfast Chinese dishes will continue to grow a trend not limited to Asian food specialists Specialty beverages will help boost eater cheques at meals and attract snacking visits Millennials will grow their visits into 2020 but their attention is already under hot competition If you ve been

    Original URL path: http://www.restaurantcentral.ca/ForecastingCanadianfoodserviceyear2020.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Top nine types of breakfast starches at Canadian restaurants
    By Kristin Menas September 8 2014 Tweet Leave a comment Canadian consumers flip for pancakes at breakfast According to Technomic MenuMonitor Data the leading type of breakfast starch on Canadian menus is pancakes with 118 menu listings As a traditional breakfast pancakes offer a great deal of opportunity for culinary creativity Restaurants are distinguishing their menus from those of their competitors by topping or infusing pancakes with a wide range of ingredients Pancakes serve as a blank canvas for operators looking to create either sweet or savoury flavour profiles for breakfast Eggspectation for instance offers a variety of pancakes including banana walnut blueberry chocolate chip and strawberry The second most popular type of breakfast starch consists of crêpes blintzes with 90 appearances on Canadian menus Both are types of ultrathin pancakes rolled to enclose sweet or savoury fillings Crêpes or blintzes are often viewed as fancier upscale breakfast items due to their elegant presentation and their association with European cuisine Family style chain Tutti Frutti offers crêpe varieties ranging from ham and Swiss cheese to hazelnut chocolate berry and IHOP Canada serves cheese blintzes filled with cottage cheese and topped with a choice of fruit compote and a dollop of sour cream French toast also appears among the top three types of breakfast starches with 81 listings on Canadian menus This indulgent breakfast offering is comprised of bread dipped in a milk egg mixture and fried until golden brown Many operators top their French toast with seasonal fruits flavoured syrups jams or powdered sugar Caplansky s Deli in Toronto serves its Leaning Tower of Caplansky which features three pieces of thick cut challah French toast with layers of cream cheese blueberry jam and beef bacon served with organic maple syrup and fresh fruit See also Top 10 types of pizza

    Original URL path: http://www.restaurantcentral.ca/breakfaststarches.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Develop your beer palate
    the sides More recent scientific research has actually shown that bitter glands are all over the tongue as are the other sensations The larger bumps on your tongue are actually the bitter taste buds They are larger because it takes a much longer time to transmit the bitterness from the receptors through the nerve pathways to the brain We ve also come to learn the tongue has the ability to detect umami which can best be described as savoury and fat richness in foods If we only had these six taste buds to rely on our world would surely be less interesting Lo and behold the olfactory system the intricate system that starts in our noses and opens up into our mouth via the soft palate This is not just smelling it s much more Our olfactory system has the ability to conjure up vivid memories and allows us to perceive thousands of aromas Many things come to affect our ability to develop our palates A simple cold reduces the nose to a congested mess and along with it the disappearance of aromatics The same can be said of smoking but I m sure some would deny that Don t forget allergies environmental issues cologne and perfume etc and the list goes on and on So you ask What can I do to start training my palate and learn how to taste beer more effectively The answer is not simple and requires some time and patience Stop and smell the roses literally First of all roses have a soft and delicate aroma that may have some bearing on some beers More importantly don t be in such a rush to eat drink or experience life We are starting to see a real movement to relax and enjoy life and with

    Original URL path: http://www.restaurantcentral.ca/Developyourbeerpalate.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Hottest menu trend in CRFA 2011 Canadian Chef Survey: LOCAL
    especially sustainable seafood Nutrition and health rank as the third hottest trend this year up from sixth place in 2010 Gluten free food allergy conscious and quinoa ancient grains migrated from last year s Up and Comer list to the top 10 Hot Trends for 2011 What to watch for Beer and African food The No 1 up and comer on restaurant menus is gluten free beer rising from second place last year African food jumped from fifth place in 2010 to take the No 2 spot this year Red rice debuted on the list as the third most popular up and comer Chocolate A favourite of favourites As with last year s Chef Survey chocolate desserts retain the title as king of Perennial Favourites crowning this list About the study Hot Trends are the menu items and cooking methods that are at the peak of popularity Customers are excited about these items and eating them more than ever Up and Comers are the menu items that could be the next Hot Trend as interest in these items is quickly increasing Perennial Favourites are the menu items that are always popular and are long time menu favourites CRFA s Canadian Chef Survey is based on responses from more than 500 professional chefs and was conducted in February 2011 by independent market research firm BrandSpark International Chefs rated the popularity of various menu items and cooking methods indentifying hot trends up and comers perennial favourites and yesterday s news Check back shortly on www crfa ca for a detailed report CRFA thanks all those that participated in the 2011 Chef Survey Congratulations to CRFA member Trevor Robertson Executive Chef of the Radisson Hotel Saskatoon for winning the draw for the Apple iPad Special thanks to the Canadian Culinary Federation for their

    Original URL path: http://www.restaurantcentral.ca/CRFA2011CanadianChefSurvey.aspx (2016-02-14)
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