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IN THIS ISSUE RAMMYS 2018 TECH IN THE KITCHEN FOOD HALLS

Emerging Spices CARLA HALL GLUTEN-FREE TRENDS IMPROVING FOOD COST MAGAZI NE. EATERPYLSE. TV

SPRING 2018

EATERY PULSE NEWS


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EDITOR'S NOTE We are just coming off our coverage of the 2018 RAMMY Awards at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in D.C. It was my first opportunity to be at the award ceremony and gala, and I was very impressed with the energy, excitement and zeal of the restaurateurs, managers and culinary teams there. You could feel the uplifting “swagger” of those who arrived and heard their names read out. It certainly made me more excited about our upcoming documentary film series, starting here in D.C. this fall. The city has certainly arrived as a food destination in America and is raising the bar for other cities. What better way is there to pay tribute to these culinary stars than to document some of what is going on here? The stories that our documentary will reveal are uplifting and unifying for the larger D.C. market community. I’ll be able to reveal more soon. This issue brings us several compelling new stories, including celebrity chef, co-host and caterer Carla Hall’s deep ties to the D.C. community, the evolution of Georgetown and how that plays into its prospects to attract more restaurants, a story on two RAMMYS-nominated cocktail programs, and of course, our RAMMYS winners list. We have full video coverage of the industry event and the awards ceremony to be released around Independence Day on our new Swizzle Chill TV channel (show.swizzlechill.com). With so much happening in the local D.C. restaurant industry, it’s easy to pass up our own news:

GLUTEN-FREE TRENDS D.C. restaurants adopt

7

the gluten-free trend

AWARDNOMINATED COCKTAIL PROGRAMS Two top cocktail

12

programs show why they were RAMMYS finalists

2018 RAMMYS Check out the winners

30

list in the many categories of excellence

RISE OF THE FOOD HALL How food halls are the shared economy tool for restaurants

15


EDITOR'S NOTE

TECH IN THE KITCHEN Apps help restaurateurs

19

reduce food waste

RAMW EVENTS A recap of RAMW events

22

and trainings

GEORGETOWN CORRIDOR Is Georgetown for

34

restaurants?

EMERGING SPICES A Mintel report identifies

40

three emerging spice blends

For advertising or content marketing solutions, contact

We’ve launched a new lifestyle magazine—our first consumer-interest publication in Swizzle Chill Eatery Pulse Media is adding Restaurant C-Suite Magazine, our first national foodservice magazine in the late summer We’re happy to have been embraced by many in the local industry here and excited about going to print our first Eatery Pulse News edition for the fall, while moving issues to a quarterly format Summer (mid-July) and fall (October) Eatery Pulse News issues are upcoming. Did I mention the documentary film? Of course, I did. I’m very eager to film our first documentary in the late fall and also bring our readers a lot more robust food-related content, drawing largely from your own stories, across three very unique publications. There are more Eatery Pulse updates coming in the next issue and in our newsletters (and a FAQ section in the back of this one.) Building our content library, in print, web+digital, audio (upcoming), and video formats is another way we pay tribute to this great industry, while getting our news and insights into 1 in 3 D.C. restaurants this year will only help our goal of democratizing restaurant best practices and inside-industry news. We’re always looking to add more voices and insights. Are you a bonafide expert or insider and want to contribute to our content? Send a message to newstips@eaterypulse.net. Best wishes for success,

Rick Zambrano EXECUTIVE EDITOR

John at sales@eaterypulse.net. For subscriptions, navigate to

contactrick@eaterypulse.tv

subscribe.eaterypulse.tv

subscribe.eaterypulse.tv


CARLA HALL Her D.C. roots and

42

biggest accomplishments

BENEFITS TO SEEK IN A POS What are the things to

43

look for in your next POS

FOOD COST Three easy ways to start

46

improving it next week

TEAM Ashley McCarty, Design Consultant Rick Zambrano, Executive Editor Sean Cooper, Eatery Pulse TV Director

WRITERS Sonikka Loganathan Eric Nomis Max Testa Roshan Thomas

Eatery Pulse News magazine is published four times per year for the benefit of the restaurant industry in the Metro D.C. market. Eatery Pulse Media is a fast-growing information services and content marketing firm, publishing three magazines and operatng two multimedia webbroadcast channels, a documentary film series and a consultancy. Eatery Pulse is a Crown Rio Venture. COVER PHOTO: FISH BURGER WITH SPICE, PHOTO COURTESY TAYLOR GROTE. THIS PAGE: CARLA HALL, PHOTO COURTESY RYAN FORBES


GIN RENAISSANCE D.C. welcomes a rebirth

34

of the classic drink

Happy anniversary to us!

EATERY PULSE NEWS


GLUTEN-FREE BOWL, PHOTO COURTESY JO SONN

BEAUTIFUL BARCELONA BY NIKKITA LAWRENCE; PHOTOS BY LEE COOPER

EATERIES ADOPT THE GLUTEN-FREE TREND BY ROSHAN THOMAS With the rise of superfoods like kale, pomegranates, and green tea in the last five years, the healthy foods landscape has no shortage of choices for those who want to eat healthier. Now, a different food trend that began as an alternative for those without a choice, has been gaining traction for its health benefits. Gluten-free (GF) foods, typically consumed by those with celiac

disease, wheat allergies, and gluten sensitivity, have seen a 36 percent sales growth rate from 2010-2015, according to a 2016 report by Packaged Facts, a leading food market research firm. Previously consumed in large part by those with dietary restrictions, GF options are now being sought out by a much wider audience. In this article, we’ll break down this new trend and share how


trend and share how restaurants can take advantage of the popularity of this movement to attract more customers. Part of the popularity behind GF foods is their versatility. There are GF alternatives for just about every type of traditional grain, and most come with much more health benefits, including lower fat content and higher protein and fiber levels. In 2016, GF options were present in roughly 33 percent of fast casual restaurants, 25 percent of fine dining restaurants, and 13 percent of national chains (Packaged Facts, 2016). As more and more consumers embrace the healthy eating trend in general, we can expect these figures to rise in the coming years. The rise in demand for GF foods has big implications for the restaurant industry. Instead of offering one or two thrown-together options, if any at all, for the minority of customers who used to request them, restaurants are now showcasing more GF menu items, knowing that the demand is coming from those with gluten intolerance as well as those who prefer this type of food for its health benefits. Here are some local eateries that are putting a GF twist on traditional favorites. The Happy Tart Entirely devoted to GF treats, this Virginia bakery has locations in Alexandria, Falls Church, and Del Ray (currently under renovation). Cakes, crepes, cookies, cupcakes, macarons, and fresh bread mean there’s no shortage of irresistible sweets for any palette. SWEETGREEN OFFERS A MENU WITH GF INGREDIENTS. PHOTO COURTESY SWEETGREEN


Sweetgreen

accessible to GF patrons.

For those that need a quick, accessible, and tasty bite, Sweetgreen has you covered. With

For restaurateurs who haven’t taken a step into

locations all over the DMV (and USA, for that

the world of GF gastronomy just yet, the

matter), a fresh and filling salad or protein bowl

possibilities are endless, but the clock is

is never out of reach. Diners can enjoy

ticking. With so many eateries in the area

premium GF ingredients and dressing options

following the national trend toward sustainable,

that pack a healthy kick.

healthy, and inclusive ingredients, the time to make a mark in the District’s GF landscape is

Firefly

now while the trend is still developing. Because

This Dupont Circle staple has always been a

we’ve moved past just offering salads and

favorite brunch spot for many due to its ability

soups to those who are gluten-intolerant,

to recreate classics like hamburgers, Rubens,

restaurants now must think creatively to

and shrimp and grits, and make them

Don't get half the pic, get the whole pic.

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RAMMYS 2018 A TALE OF TWO COCKTAIL AWARD FINALISTS BY SONIKKA LOGANATHAN


T

he nominations for the year’s most anticipated food and restaurant event is here, with the Washington D.C. area’s most delicious and creative restaurants in the spotlight. The 2018 RAMMY Awards, hosted by the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington, celebrated the diversity and expertise of D.C.’s most renowned food destinations. Within the various categories, the Cocktail Program of the Year nominations are particularly eye-catching. Cocktails are always going to be a customer favorite but the mixology game this year was at the highest level. Take a look at Bar Charley in Dupont Circle or Petworth Citizen & Reading Room in the Petworth neighborhood. These nominees offer some of the most unique drinks in the city, with surprising flavor combinations and exciting twists on your favorite classic cocktails. At Bar Charley, restaurateurs Jackie Greenbaum and Gordon Banks put together a classy but affordable cocktail program filled with fresh, tropical flavors to transport you away from the seemingly never-ending Washington winter. With 55 different options on the menu, Bar Charley has the best of both worlds, with a variety of fruity drinks as well as those that dabble in spicy, warm, and smoky flavors. Imaginative names give patrons a unique experience with every drink. For example, the “Cozy Wozy Fuzzy Wuzzy Yummy Yum Time Tea,” combines brandy and winter spices with fresh pineapple, mint, and lavender and is served hot—unlike your average iced drink. Some of the combinations might look daunting, like the Alpha & Omega which has egg whites, or the Quack Quackerac with duck fat infused St. Germain liquor, but leaving your flavor comfort zone pays off here. If you like drinks that mimic a beachy paradise, the “Totally Tiki” section has you covered. Organized by texture and taste, these cocktails, served in tiki mugs, offer all-time favorites like Pina Coladas and Mai Tais along with upgraded versions of these drinks. Rum, pineapple, passionfruit, and coconut are

featured in most of these drinks. They also serve a party-sized cocktail that serves two to four people and is served in a large tiki bowl. The Scorpio Bowl, perfect for the post-work happy hour gang, mixes passionfruit, rum, bourbon, gin, fruit juices and ginger and is topped with bright pink flowers. If you want to stick to the basics but still want to give your taste buds a surprise, take a look at the extensive selection of martinis and Manhattans. Here you can find variations of your classic bourbon, rye, gin or vodka drinks infused with bitters like orange, angostura, and Benedictine bitters. Over at Petworth Citizen & Reading Room, cocktail connoisseurs can find a quiet space in the Reading Room, a library-themed space. At Petworth, it’s not just the cocktails that make it special but the entire experience. Bartender Chantel Tseng of the Reading Room uses her favorite literature to create novel (pun intended) cocktails. Every week, the cocktail wiz creates a new menu inspired by the literature she reads during that week. The Reading Room also provides a variety of sherry, champagne, farmhouse craft beer, unfiltered Spanish cider and natural wines. Petworth has a selection of iconic cocktails on their seasonal menu, like the fresh and punchy El Diablo and the warm Monte Carlo Old Fashioned. They also created the Highlander Fizz, which combines ginger syrup, lemon, basil and egg whites with scotch, giving these warm, earthy flavors an alcoholic kick. On the fruitier side is the Livener, with fresh raspberries and lemon paired with champagne and gin. Upon hearing about the nomination, Tseng was, “pretty surprised but certainly honored.” She said, “[Petworth] have a welcoming vibe, ranging from first dates to family outing with kids. Solo regulars are just as comfy as groups getting together on a weekend evening,” and that attribute makes them a neighborhood favorite.

EATERY PULSE NEWS | 13


THE STAR TEAM AT BAR CHARLEY PHOTO COURTESY BAR CHARLEY

These are just two of the five nominees. The1 9 passion and expertise of these bartenders and restaurateurs are evident in their drinks, and they elevate the D.C. cocktail scene with each compelling concoction.

SUMMER 2018 SUBSCRIBE.EATERYPULSE.TV

FRESH JUICES PRODUCE TACTICS FIVE FLAVOR TRENDS POULTRY IDEAS PAYMENT PROCESSING TABLET POS NOODLES OF FUN

33 |  TRIPMAG.COM

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THE BLOCK ASIAN FOOD HALL PHOTO VIA PIKE AND ROSE

RISE OF THE FOOD HALL


F

ood Halls continue to appear all across the country, and are gaining breakneck momentum in the Washington, D.C. area. According to a report by Cushman Wakefield, there’s a reason these food halls are as popular and appealing as they are. Food Halls in North America 2018 notes how economically robust the concept is for developers and restaurant operators—they offer an ecommerce-proof product that can’t be replicated by a website a consumer is browsing while lounging in the convenience of their home. Furthermore, these food halls offer a true dining and social experience, the cornerstone value proposition of high-end, sit-down restaurants that offer patrons a sampling of local and/or global fare in an upscale setting. Pike and Rose in North Bethesda, Md. is the latest mixed-used development to offer a food hall. The recent announcement of an Asian food hall, The

Block, coming in 2019 should be no surprise. It will occupy a 500-square-foot space at 967 Rose Avenue, and feature vendors that include Pokéworks offering poke bowls, Taiwanese “SnoCream” and Asian street food, according to Bethesda Magazine. The food hall was first reported by Washingtonian and is yet another addition to the evolving and voluminous food hall scene in Metro-D.C., which includes recent and upcoming projects: Ballston Quarter (Arlington, Va.), Isabella Eatery (Tysons, Va.), Latin Marketplace (NoMa, D.C.), and Common Ground. (Rosslyn, Va.) According to Cushman & Wakefield, food halls offer a less expensive operating model to restaurants than they have currently, although the increase in food hall penetration in major urban markets is also a reason that restaurateurs will see increased competition and more restaurant failures. The $2.4 billion purchase of the building above Chelsea Market by Google, in March 2018, is another demonstration that the food hall is not just a strong value play for restaurants, but also for developers, mall operators and mixed-use developers. The food hall model is usually tasked to and operated by a master operator. This gives partner restaurant operators a model where they can show off artisan products and foods, and provide a diversity of concepts and service-style systems, ranging from urban street fare to polished, sit-down service. Typically, the master food hall operator will also provide space to gourmet markets or street vendors who can offer foods to be prepared at home, further further adding a mix to the built-in food ecosystem.

BUREDO WILL ADD A LOCATION AT BALLSTON MARKET PHOTO COURTESY BUREDO

Flexibility is key in this format, and there are a variety of short- and long-term options that the master food hall operator can provide to tenants and subtenants. “Deals often include common area maintenance charges for communal dining and/or cooking, preparation, freezer/cooler or office space.” The report notes that, in many ways,


THE REPORT NOTES THAT THE FOOD HALL REPRESENTS FOR RESTAURANT OPERATORS THE SHARED ECONOMY VERSION OF A DINING VENUE.


BALLSTON CENTER WHERE BALLSTON QUARTER MARKET WILL RESIDE. PHOTO COURTESY CLARK CONSTRUCTION.

the food hall represents for restaurant operators the shared economy version of a dining venue. Cushman & Wakefield projects about 180 to 190 food hall projects in operation in the United States by the end of the year, and 300 by the end of 2020. If the 190 number is accurate, the end-ofyear 2018 count would represent a 64 percent increase over the 116 total that was tallied at the end of 2017. Moreover, there are 44 U.S. food hall projects under construction, currently. Expect to see more of these experiential dining forums rise up locally as we close out 2018, and more announcements of future projects due to their popularity with savvy restaurant operators, property developers and landlords.

COMPASS COFFEE. PHOTO COURTESY COMPASS COFFEE FACEBOOK

EATERY PULSE NEWS | 18


TECH IN THE KITCHEN APPS HELP REDUCE FOOD WASTE

BY MAX TESTA

I

KYIRISAN USES AN APP TO HELP REDUCE FOOD WASTE. PHOTO COURTESY KYIRISAN.

n recent years, as restaurateurs cater to customers who are growing more connected every day, technology in restaurants is on the rise around the world, From smartphone ordering to self-service kiosks, the trend has been plenty visible for customers. But tech is also shaking things up behind the scenes, and it is changing the way that savvy restaurant operators think about their back-of-house tasks. Apps and technologies designed to streamline ordering, invoicing, and inventory have exploded in recent years—and although the original reason for their popularity was their ease of use and time-saving benefits, restaurant operators have quickly realized that these apps have huge potential to reduce food waste and improve restaurants’ sustainability, while saving owners money on wasted food.

up the scene, receiving $10 million dollars in investment in 2017 to continue expanding its operations. The app connects restaurant operators directly to wholesale suppliers, with the goal of more efficient ordering. It also provides analytical tools and attempts to reduce or even eliminate reliance on separate spreadsheets, making the ordering process faster and easier. This could not only save restaurant owners money; it might also help to reduce food waste, a problem which, according to the USDA has seen the U.S. throw away as much as 30 percent to 40 percent of the food supply annually. Because of the increased efficiency of direct, app-based ordering, restaurants are able to decrease excess orders and food spoilage while also improving productivity.

BlueCart

Orderly

BlueCart, originally a small tech start-up, blew

Another back-of-house technology innovator


Orderly, which utilizes machine learning to provide analytical tools for users, and streamlines invoicing and inventory. The program allows restaurant operators to simply snap a picture of their invoices, creating a digital archive of information. This program is focused on simplifying data entry and making it easier for restaurant owners to keep track of their data, which could help restaurant owners improve efficiency and reduce food waste. Tech in Action This kind of technology has huge potential for eliminating food waste, as apps designed to help restaurant operators track orders and analyze their ordering history become more readily available. By adopting these technologies, forward-thinking restaurateurs are improving their bottom line while also reducing food waste. One of the innovative restaurant owners to realize this potential is Tim Ma, owner and chef at Kyirisan, which opened in D.C.’s Shaw neighborhood in 2016. For Chef Ma, eliminating food waste is “a no-brainer as far as good business practices are concerned.” And in the process of saving money and helping the environment, Chef Ma draws new inspiration from using produce efficiently, telling Eatery Pulse News that “there's no better motivator than food waste to help you flex creativity (e.g., understanding the different ways you can use uncommon or unusual parts of an animal or vegetable as an ingredient) and save on your bottom line.” Chef Ma is not alone in his quest to reduce food waste. He, and other like-

PHOTOS COURTESY BLUECART

minded chefs, are taking advantage of technology to help reduce their food waste. Chef Ma teamed up with BlueCart for the Zero Waste Kitchen initiative, which brought Chef Ma and Kyirisan together with two other innovative restaurants from across the country; Tanya Holland’s Brown Sugar in Oakland, and Jehangir Mehta’s Graffiti Earth in New York City. The Zero Waste Kitchen initiative lasted for eight weeks, and participants’ data was posted weekly to showcase their progress towards sustainability. On opposite coasts, these star operators showed off their success through BlueCart’s app, which tracked their progress in reducing food waste and included statistics in both money and time saved—and the results are clear. At the end of the eight weeks, all three chefs had saved money and time, and greatly increased their sustainability scores.


We are foodservice industry content. We're where you want us to be to keep you informed today, and better prepared for tomorrow. Fresh. Focused. Inspired (by you).

AND COMING IN PRINT EDITIONS. OCTOBER 2018. EATERY PULSE NEWS.


CHURCH HALL, GEORGETOWN, D.C.

RAMW EVENTS RAMMYS 2018 AWARD CEREMONIES "The room is filled with some incredible folks. We have finalists who are shaping our industry, philanthropists and humanitarians like José Andrés, leaders like Jodie McLean of EDENS, who are championing for women leaders in the industry, food recovery leaders, like Mike Curtin at D.C. Central Kitchen, and chefs like Spike Mendelson, pioneers..." said Kathy E. Hollinger, RAMW president and CEO, as she spoke at the 36th Annual RAMMY Awards in Washington, D.C., sharing her appreciation of the movers and shakers in the local restaurant industry. Check out our upcoming coverage on Swizzle Chill TV.

SHOW.SWIZZLECHILL.COM

RAMMYS FINALIST ROUNDTABLE AT CHURCH HALL RAMW convened the 2018 RAMMYS Finalists for Restaurateur of the Year Award at Church Hall for a lively discussion about real estate, tech, Initiative 77, and restaurant labor. See our article on RAMMY finalist tech favorites online at roundtable.eaterypulse.tv. Also, see our related article on Georgetown as a place for restaurants immediately following this section.

FUTURE TRAINING SESSIONS See the next page for RAMW trainings that are helpful to restaurant owners and operators in the Washington, D.C. area. Some courses are offered online.


RAMW TRAININGS 7/9, 7/31

FOOD SAFETY MANAGER 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. http://www.ramw.org/register-course

ONLINE

SEXUAL HARASSMENT MGR Preventing Sexual Harassment - an online course. Register at ramw.org//harassmentcourse for manager course

ONLINE

SEXUAL HARASSMENT Preventing Sexual Harassment - an online course. Register at ramw.org//harassmentcourse for employee course

ONLINE

ALLERGENS TRAINING The course covers such topics as identifying allergens, communication with the guest, preventing crosscontact, food labels and more. http://www.ramw.org/allergenstraining

EATERY PULSE NEWS | 23


SMALL BIZ EVENTS 06/20

USING QUICKBOOKS ONLINE: SCORE At the Arlington Economic Development Center. 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Register: http://events.r20.constantco ntact.com/register/event? llr=87iq8rcab&oeidk=a07efd13mnu0f0 062d6

06/28

EFFECTIVE NETWORKING: SCORE WORKSHOP 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Dovell Technologies, 7901 Jones Branch Road, Ste 600, McLean, Va. Register: https://washingtondc.score.org/event/ 628-effective-networking-workshop

06/28

WRITING A WINNING BUSINESS PLAN: SCORE 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at SCORE office. Register: http://events.r20.constantcon tact.com/register/event? llr=87iq8rcab&oeidk=a07efd13mtw1fd 58a11

06/28

SENIOR ENTREPRENEURSHIP PROGRAM - HATTIE HOLMES, D.C. 10:15 a.m. to 11:45 p.m. The Department of Consumer and Regulatory (DCRA) Small Business Resource Center (SBRC) is collaborating with the D.C. Office of Aging (DCOA) to host its Senior Day Program for residents 60 years of age and older Register: https://dcrasbrc.ecenterdirect.com/ev ents/44648

EATERY PULSE NEWS | 24


CONTENT. VIDEO. LEAD GENERATION. STUDIO TEAM BY EATERY PULSE

THE MARKETING PARTNER YOU'VE BEEN LOOKING FOR HAS ALWAYS BEEN JUST AROUND THE CORNER. LET US SHOW YOU WHY, AND HOW.

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IS GEORGETOWN FOR RESTAURANTS? BY ERIC NOMIS

T

he Georgetown M Street corridor has seen significant changes over the last two decades. Once mainly known a party destination for college students, the neighborhood has matured into a real estate trophy district, attracting top retailers. It still draws tourists from around the world, but with its diversity of college students being lured from surrounding schools, including the Georgetown University main campus and George Washington University, the customer base can often skew young and diverse. “Have you seen so many fit people eating salads?� asked Joe Sternlieb, Georgetown BID CEO in a May panel discussion held at Church Hall in Washington, D.C., and sponsored by the Restaurant Association of Metropolitan Washington (RAMW). At the RAMW panel discussion, Sternlieb said that Georgetown is going through a renaissance. Talk of a Georgetown Metro Station and the redevelopment of the C&O Canal are signs that the area again is up and coming. In the roundtable discussion, several other factors came up in favor of the area as a good prospect for restaurants and retailers: The area is home to an outdoor shopping area that is the

PHOTO COURTESY EROL AHMED


AMERICA EATS TAVERN, GEORGETOWN, D.C. PHOTO COURTESY AMERICA EATS

largest in adjoining shopping, the ubiquity of Uber and Lyft remove parking concerns for customers, and the diversity of the retailers and food outlets make the area a true social destination. The Georgetown corridor has always been a top tourist destination due to the sheer equity in its name and notoriety. Dochter & Alexander reports in a BizNow piece that retail spaces average $300/square-foot, making the economics of running a restaurant business in Georgetown challenging. Also, as the story points out, it is harder for restaurants to compete in the bidding and acquisition of open spaces versus the muscle of top national retailers. Celebrity Chef and Restaurateur José Andrés recently signed a lease for a new restaurant concept from his ThinkFoodGroup, America Eats Tavern. It will occupy the space at 3139 M Street Northwest, the former home of Old Glory, a restaurant that operated there for 26 years and closed suddenly.

As another sign of the long-term value of the Georgetown corridor for business, The Shops at Georgetown Park was acquired in 2014 for $272.5M by Atlantabased real estate firm Jamestown, which also owns several trophy office buildings and retail real estate. During a tour of Georgetown Park, Jamestown representatives showed vacant restaurant space on the backside of the park’s development at street level and facing the C&O canal. There, representatives touted the space as a “partnership between the developer and a visionary restaurant group,” and suggested that it was a destination venue. The continued ability of Jamestown to attract top restaurants to Georgetown Park, however, will go against recent history: Georgetown has 22 (full-service) restaurants still open in 2018, only about half of the number it had in 2008, according to The Georgetown Metropolitan. Many restaurateurs and news reports point to the moratorium on


liquor licenses as part of the stalling of new restaurant openings. It expired in 2016. Others say the high rents and past closings are obstacles when restaurateurs envision setting up shop in Georgetown. Restaurateurs will make their decision based on the value proposition there. What economic factors would make them invest along the Georgetown retail corridor? Across D.C., restaurant owners are becoming accustomed to asking for a significant portion of the build-out from landlords; this would be an essential tactic in negotiating space in Georgetown. Margins are slim for D.C.’s top restaurateurs, who have built their restaurants into destinations in and of themselves. And there are plenty of competing neighborhoods that can be more appealing for a variety of factors, including the Shaw, NoMa and the District Wharf, as landlords there beckon new restaurant development. Thyme Real Estate Holdings, which is developing along the side streets of the corridor, is also moving forward in Georgetown in a way that is not so typical. Its Grace Street Collective has relatively low rents at 3210 Grace Street, Northwest, according to BizNow. The Collective, which is a boutique food hall, is home to South Block, Sundevich and Grace Street Roasters. (The Collective is featured in a "Healthy Food Trends" news segment in the Swizzle Chill TV YouTube library.) The building that houses The Collective is growing: Thyme is adding a fish shop and a restaurant by José Andrés-protegee Johnny Spiro in 2018. Another sign of the changing M Street Corridor in Georgetown is the opening of

national food retailers and coffee shops. In December, Wawa opened its first D.C. location there and Blue Bottle Coffee arrived in July 2017. Georgetown should continue to see a gradual more-restaurantfriendly environment as it evolves into an all-day destination; additionally, there are other opportunities that can be realized: investment in further side-street development and the possibility that a savvy landlord makes a long-term investment in a large, ambient food hall. A recent report by Cushman & Wakefield, a real estate consultancy and research firm, notes that there will be 300 food hall projects in operation by 2020 and that the food hall model creates a robust economic catalyst for new restaurant development. Church Hall’s opening in March portends well for future full-service restaurant openings. The beer and game hall is a striking and comfy location to socialize and enjoy great beer. Geoff Dawson, a Church Hall partner, was on hand at the roundtable to offer up his opinion of the changing Georgetown environment and proclaim his own positive outlook on the dining scene there. The Church Hall investment in a neighborhood that is 270 years old is also a long play, but the venue as a destination could drive a unique trajectory of success. As evident during the panel discussion, and what many other writers have noticed, is that the space is designed in a way to help guests forget they are in a subterranean space. Game boards, multiple TVs and a setup that includes couches and communal tables are all part of the cozy, destination-worthy restaurant and beer hall. Church Hall’s arrival and the new full-service restaurants announced for Georgetown this year may be indicative of a tide turning in favor of restaurateurs.


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AND THE WINNERS ARE...

RAMMYS 2018

TARVER KING OF THE RESTAURANT AT PATOWMAC FARM PRESENTING AT RAMMYS 2018,


Restaurateur  of the Year Employee of the Year

Ari Gejdenson, Mindful Restaurants

Andrea Tateosian, Urbana

Manager of the Year Pastry Chef of the Year

Heidi Minora, Commissary

Tiffany MacIsaac, Buttercream Bakeshop

EATERY PULSE NEWS | 31


19

Zena Polin, co-owner, Daily Dish, Favorite Gathering Place, RAMMYS 2018

Favorite Gathering Place Daily Dish

Rising Culinary Stars of the Year

Chef of the Year Amy Brandwein, Centrolina

Gerald Addison & Chris Morgan, Compass, Maydan


"THE ROOM IS FILLED WITH SOME INCREDIBLE FOLKS. WE HAVE FINALISTS WHO ARE SHAPING OUR INDUSTRY, PHILANTHROPISTS AND HUMANITARIANS LIKE JOSÉ ANDRÉS, LEADERS LIKE JODIE MCLEAN OF EDENS, WHO ARE CHAMPIONING FOR WOMEN LEADERS IN THE INDUSTRY, FOOD RECOVERY LEADERS, LIKE MIKE CURTIN AT D.C. CENTRAL KITCHEN, AND CHEFS LIKE SPIKE MENDELSON, PIONEERS..."

KATHY E. HOLLINGER, RAMW PRESIDENT AND CEO, SPEAKING DURING OPENING REMARKS AT THE 2018 RAMMYS AWARD CEREMONY


JOSÉ ANDRÉS, PHOTO, COURTESY RYAN FORBES

Service Program of the Year minibar by José Andrés

Exceptional Leadership & Impact Award Joan Hisaoka Allied Member of the Year

José Andrés, Patricia Fernandez de la Cruz

USI Insurance Services

Duke Zeibert Capital Achievement Daniel Coleman

EATERY PULSE NEWS | 34


“ANYONE IN THIS REGION AND SO MANY AROUND THE WORLD WILL TELL YOU THAT JOSÉ ANDRÉS IS AN UNSTOPPABLE FORCE. IN THE CULINARY ARTS, AS A RESTAURATEUR, AS A HUMANITARIAN WORLDWIDE, AND RECENTLY AS ONE OF TIMES’ 100 MOST INFLUENTIAL PEOPLE OF 2018. TO THE WASHINGTON, D.C. REGION AND TO THE HOSPITALITY INDUSTRY, HE IS FIRST AND FOREMOST ONE OF OUR MOST VISIBLE EXCEPTIONAL HOMETOWN HEROES.”

EUN YANG, NBC4 ANCHOR AND AWARD-WINNING REPORTER, SPEAKING OF CHEF JOSÉ ANDRÉS, BEFORE PRESENTING HIS WIFE, PATRICIA FERNANDEZ DE LA CRUZ, WITH THE RAMMYS EXCEPTIONAL LEADERSHIP & IMPACT AWARD THEY BOTH HAD WON.


#RAMMYS18

Regional F&B Producer of the Year Right Proper Brewing

19

Casual Restaurant of the Year Ivy City Smokehouse Tavern

Casual Brunch of the Year Ambar, Capitol Hill

EATERY PULSE NEWS | 36

33 |  TRIPMAG.COM

Upscale Brunch of the Year Osteria Morini


Cocktail Program of the Year

Beer Program of the Year Owen's Ordinary

Espita Mezcaleria

Wine Program of the Year Bourbon Steak

New Restaurant of the Year Chiko


19

#RAMMYS

Favorite Fast Bites of the Year Moby Dick House of Kabobs EATERY PULSE NEWS | 38

Formal Fine Dining Restaurant of the Year Masseria 33 |  TRIPMAG.COM

Milestone Restaurant of the Year Tony and Joe's Seafood

Upscale Casual Restaurant of the Year Clarity


WATCH VIDEO AT AXIS.EATERYPULSE.TV


EMERGING SPICE BLENDS :

GLOBAL FLAVOR TRENDS

SEARED TUNA WITH ASIAN SPCES, PHOTO COURTESY VITCHAKOM KOONYOSYING


Mintel identified emerging flavor trends that have potential for application in foodservice this year. In its 2018 U.S. Flavor Trends Report, global spice blends were identified as having unique potential for restaurants and foodservice organizations. Examples of emerging spice blends include berbere, an ethiopian spice, ras el hanout (a mix from North Africa), and Togarashi (a spice blend used in Japanese cooking). “These blends can emerge from a variety of (global) cuisines, including African, Middle Eastern, and Asian. While the components that make up each blend can differ, what remains constant is the sheer versatility of each spice blend with various foods,” says the report. Berbere is a blend of several spices, including ginger, basil, chili peppers, and garlic. It’s been used in stews, notes Mintel, and on beef, chicken, eggplants and lentil. A US Foods report in 2017 called out berbere for its potential use in “global breakfast” foods. According to the Washington Post, there are few chefs that mix the berbere blend themselves, opting instead to purchase it premixed from a trusted supplier. The article cautions that

EATERY PULSE NEWS | 12

berbere that is not mixed right my result in too much salt, which would impact the flavor of what it’s used on adversely. Ras el hanout is a variable and evolving spice, typically including cardamom, cumin, and ginger. The foie gras mousse, a plate at D.C.’s Arroz restaurant, is made of caramelized maple butter, blueberry jam and a ras el hanout doughnut. In Turkish cuisine, turkey and turkey meatballs have been dishes that have benefited from the spice blend’s complex flavors. Togarashi is added to soups and proteins and saw a 9 percent increase in mentions on menus from 2015 to 2017. In fact, as a RAMMYS finalist contender in 2017, D.C.’s own Hazel Restaurant included the spice in a Corn Donburi recipe submitted to the blog of the Restaurant Association of Metropolitan Washington. Circa has featured a Seared Ahi Tuna with togarashi seasoning, according to DC Refined. Togarashi is expected to continue its trajectory of popularity in restaurants across the country, as well as in Greater Washington D.C. Area.

GLOBAL SPICES. PHOTO COURTESY MIN LING.


CARLA HALL'S D.C. ROOTS

See the James Beard Winners List at JamesBeard.swizzlechill.com

Attended L’Academie de Cuisine in Gaithersburg, Md., and graduated with a Culinary Career Training certificate Started a catering company in Wheaton, Md. in 2001. That catering company eventually became Alchemy by Carla Hall Held the post of executive chef of the Washington Club, a private Club, in the early 2000’s Best known as a competitor on Bravo’s “Top Chef” and “Top Chef: All Stars,” gaining a following for her “Hootie Hoo” endearing catch phrase and her “cooking with love” philosophy Has been one of the co-hosts of “The Chew” since September 2011 when it started airing

C

arla Hall, the co-host of the ABC network show “The Chew,” and a headliner in the D.C. Metropolitan Cooking and Entertaining Show in 2017, has deep D.C. roots and an impressive career. Look at some of her career highlights and close ties to the nation’s capital:

Sits on the advisory committees for the James Beard Foundations’ Women’s Leadership Advisory Committee Culinary Ambassador for Sweet Home Café at the Smithsonian National Museum for African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C.


THREE IMPORTANTÂ FEATURES TO SEEK OUT IN THE MODERN POS BY ERIC NOMIS

T

he restaurant point-of-sale (POS) of today has been advancing by leaps and bounds and new, more compact tablet-based systems appear to be all the rage. Restaurateurs are seeking a POS that can deliver on many fronts, but is also easy to use. What are some of the top things to look for in the POS of today? Here are some main features:

T

ech series #restauranttech

PHOTO VIA REVEL SYSTEMS IPAD POS

Integration with loyalty programs is also important, as they are a great way to encourage additional business and capture & store data to better understand and market to customers. Many POS systems have built-in CRM (Customer Relationship Management) tools to help manage customer data; this can then be integrated with a loyalty provider's systems.

Integration The POS of today should integrate well with other systems that help grow a restaurant business. The POS should be able to process payments and in addition to that integrate with mobile payment features. Millennials, in particular, are fans of mobile payments and that number is expected to grow over the coming years. A study by TD Bank in 2017 found that over 30 percent of restaurateurs surveyed acknowledge mobile-friendly pin pads (accepting Apple Pay, Google Pay, etc.) are the most important feature of a restaurant POS.

According to the TD Bank study, 47 percent of respondents found their POS system makes the payment process faster, followed by more convenient and organized (25 percent). Integration with off-ste cloud storage and because of mobile architecture, most of these have off-site, encrypted cloud storage. It goes without saying that restaurant owners and operators are interested in mobile POS systems and high of that list of reasons is the ability to archive and access customer data in the cloud. In fact, a Forrester Research survey, commissioned by

EATERY PULSE NEWS | 43


Revel iPad systems, a mobile point-of-sale vendor operating in the area, found that the vast majority of respondents say this is a must-have feature of their POS system, with over 80 percent reporting that the opportunity to collect new and expanded insights on customers, operations, and products influenced their decisions to implement tablet-based systems. Many POS systems, including those of PosIQ, are robust enough to track and mine data on their own. This gives restaurant owners the flexibility to create and track loyalty programs from within the POS system itself. The information garnered from such systems gives insight into customer behavior,provide the ability to segment different customer groups (e.g. Do loyalty member spend more than non-loyalty customers?) and understand purchasing behavior. Ease of use Ease of use is a top feature that restaurateurs look for when purchasing a POS. It should be easy enough to operate and for users to train others on the system. This is an imperative in a high-turnover industry. As an additional layer and challenge, restaurants rely on fast transactions to get customers through the line quickly, thus helping retain their loyalty. Whether it be a quick-service chain or a fine-dining restaurant, when the customer is ready to check out, that should be an efficient and reliable process, so ease of use is critical.

PHOTO VIA POSIQ

Mobile transactions Take, for example, Gusto POS. It uses conversational ordering, as it calls it, to help make it easier to use its system and also train others on the system. Gusto has received positive reviews since arriving on the scene and the team is very energetic and conversational. In addition to the ease of use, it’s also easy to consider the platform as a replacement to current systems because restaurants would be able to keep their current merchant processor, as it will work with the Gusto POS platform. This is a good segue to another reality in today’s competitive environment: The restaurant POS of today should have the capability to process mobile transactions or work with payment processors that are committed to upgrades that enable current and future iterations of payment processing. Millennials, in particular, appreciate mobile payments. According to a global study by Oracle Hospitality analyzing payments of any generational group and reported by Fast Casual, 29 percent of U.S. millennials reported already having paid with a mobile device, but 44 percent expressed a desire to do so. When payment processing is integrated into the POS itself, then that solution should be scalable so that as technology changes, new mobile technology options are handled, including Apple Pay, Google Pay and many others. According to the TD Bank study, 85 percent of restaurant professionals believe mobile payment and loyalty offerings would help market their business to attract and retain millennial customers. TD Bank’s Clover solution is also a top POS solution with name-brand recognition, particularly in the Northeast and New England.


THE WAIT IS NEARLY OVER COMING SEPTEMBER 2018 FOR MULTI-UNIT EXECS, OPERATORS AND MANAGERS


BEST PRACTICES BLOG | RICK ZAMBRANO

FOOD COST THREE EASY WAYS TO IMPROVE IT STARTING NEXT WEEK

PHOTO COURTESY ADILS PHOTOGRAPHY

Running a restaurant is a uniquely challenging endeavor. It really showcases the tremendous efforts of the restaurateurs, chefs, managers and staff who just won awards at the RAMMYS 2018 in Washington, D.C. Not only are they surviving, but they are thriving. And many other area restaurant owners and unsung heroes are also thriving in the midst of these challenges. However, challenges remain, including managing the costs of a restaurant business. It remains a focal point within the industry. One of the common questions that restaurateurs should be prepared to answer about their business is “what’s your food cost?” This is as equally

EATERY PULSE NEWS | 46

important as knowing the rent amount to be paid or knowing the payroll amount. Surprisingly, many restaurant owners—independents in particular—do not know the current food cost percentage that their restaurant is running (total food cost/total sales). The typical myth is that every restaurant owner starts out with concrete recipes, and a full knowledge of the then-current costs of the ingredients we are using. The problem is that over time, those costs change. When we speak about produce, seafood, or even dairy and meats, those costs may vary seasonally.


DISASTERS A

25-percent

cost

item

after

double

accounting

waste, and

can

food

leftovers,

for ruins

pilferage

PHOTO COURTESY OLENKA KOTYK

It’s challenging to lock in prices without signing any long-term contracts or joining a group purchasing organization. So most restaurateurs face a lot of volatility in the cost of food and drink that comes into their restaurants. As restaurants add more variety with additional ingredients, that problem becomes compounded. Food cost becomes a moving target as seasonality is always in play. Vendors can also make mistakes and charge prices that are higher than anticipated or negotiated. It happens all the time. Another key issue is having the right set of controls for food tracking and reporting. It is not uncommon in the industry to realize dishes get sent back to the kitchen; or a sandwich at a deli shop gets dropped now and then; or some food even spoils before it gets used. Food waste is a real issue. Moreover, dishonest employees who take food or supplies without approval can unknowingly really cost you a fortune. Unfortunately, it is the reality that has to be dealt with.Therefore, pilferage is another real-word problem in controlling food cost. There are experts that can help restaurateurs

calculate food cost and automated inventory systems are available, that when used correctly, can provide what we call a solid ‘theoretical food cost’. What is the food cost you should be running based on what you are purchasing and in stock? What seemingly is the easiest question in the industry is more often than not the toughest, particularly without consulting experts nor having the necessary budget to implement inventory software. Calculate your food cost, even if it’s on a napkin, and then recalculate it again every quarter. Developing a true theoretical food cost is not so easy without experts or tools, so it’s not one of my easy solutions offered below. Here are the easy ones: Rebate awareness Every manufacturer provides rebates and incentives on products to build loyalty. Here’s the problem: Everyone in the supply chain is looking to capture those rebates, when they actually belong to the end user, a.k.a. the restaurant owner. It’s particularly common when you work with group purchasing organizations— in the D.C. market this includes Dining Alliance and Axis Purchasing—that you know how re-

EATERY PULSE NEWS | 47


bates are being used. In general, your rebates may be used to offset costs, paid back to you on a periodic basis, or used to incent you on the front-end of a deal with a broadline distributor. Not knowing how to claim rebates for your business will impact your bottom line. Historically, there have been companies and websites that help you claim your rebates directly from manufacturers. The larger your restaurant, the larger the dollar amount of rebates. It is fundamentally crucial to ask, “Where are my rebates?” Calculating the real cost of a purchase. Buying food that isn’t sent directly to a restaurant is something that needs to be done all the time. Now, there are entrepreneurial individuals, who can dash over to the Costco or Restaurant Depot for you, for a fee, and then there’s your shift supervisor, who you dispatch for such tedious matters. What’s the cost of going to Restaurant Depot when it is 35 minutes away? How much are you paying that person to do so and how much are you spending on gas or mileage? Take that into account when you calculate how much you are saving on that uber-sized bottle of cooking oil, and then compare that cost to the invoice cost of getting it from US Foods, FoodPro, or any other broadline or regional distributor. Rotation (of people) Here’s another issue. You play favorites in the restaurant. We’ll call him Tim. Tim always does the inventory with seemingly steady outcomes. The business has seemingly been going well and healthy under Tim's 'consistent' groundwork.Unfortunately, your inventory may not be what you think it

is. In reality, Tim has actually been taking home a rack of ribs on a weekly basis. Just because Tim managed to submit good, flawless financial reports for you does not necessarily reflect how your restaurant loses revenue behind the scene. If you’re focused on the inventory number and not aware of your actual food cost, than Tim is in for a long and prosperous gig at your restaurant. Rotating individuals that do inventory or process invoices is a wise decision for your business. Making different people accountable on a schedule can safeguard the risks of losing your hardearned food inventory. This goes for reporting, as well. For those who take a profit share in a restaurant, one of the oldest tricks is to underreport expenses. It’s important to recognize the ones who bypass reporting invoices for payment. Make sure to let those who process invoices, or do some of the internal reporting, share responsibilities with other managers. That way, there would be several different eyes on your process of vendor payments. If a restaurant uses an outside accountant or service, it is advisable not to take the econo-quarterly plan. Rather, they should take the monthly plan so any benefits of having a second set of eyes has quick benefits to you and can save you from losses resulting from unsavory managers. Don’t accept hand-written invoices or expenses reports without proper documentation from vendors. Make sure to have a price list or contract from each vendor you deal with, even if your manager or partner has negotiated the terms or may


have some type of bartering arrangement. You restaurant should never pay the cost of special “behind-the-scenes” deals between those who represent your company and outside vendors. In doubt? Pick up the phone or do the fact-checking that is needed yourself. Knowledge

Missing food isn’t the only thing that can inflate food cost. Missing sales or cash canalso spike your food cost. If you’re tracking food cost regularly and reviewing your profit and loss statements, than you would become aware of such spikes, and could always dig for answers. In addition to knowing your numbers, technology and people are there to help keep safeguards in your restaurant.

Having surveillance cameras in the restaurant and letting employees be aware of them is another important strategy to protect a restaurant against food waste and pilferage. There are also cameras that are triggered by transactions and are focused on the handling of cash. Learn about these important tools to monitor your restaurant, even when you aren’t there. As an owner, don’t be obsessive about watching the restaurant all the time or losing sleep over it (particularly when you are running multiple stores), but make good use of these tools, even if it’s just reviewing the tape from the night before.

Sometimes, others will see things that are amiss. Always invite friends, partners, and colleagues into your restaurant. Buy them lunch or dinner. In fact, give them a gift card so they can check it out themselves. You’ll be surprised at the feedback you get—not just hospitality-related, but things that “don’t feel right”—and how they can see something going astray before you do. Vendors and delivery people that you’ve known for a long time can also be good sources of feedback.Knowing what questions to ask pertaining to the daily in-and-out routines can be key to improving your restaurant business.

FAQS: EATERY PULSE What magazines are published by Eatery Pulse and what is the target audience? We publish three magazines. Eatery Pulse News is published and distributed for the benefit of independent restaurateurs in the D.C. market. Restaurant C-Suite Magazine, debuting in September, is designed to inform executives, operators and managers across the country. Swizzle Chill is our first consumer-oriented publication meant to be enjoyed by foodies and food & drink industry aficionados and insiders. Since we also offer content marketing solutions, we do create multimedia content for business clients. For a consultation, get in touch with solutions@eaterypulse.net or call 301.944.0889.. How can I subscribe to your publications and how can I receive the print edition? You can sign up free for our online and digital news. Print editions will be distributed in early October and you can guarantee receipt by purchasing a VIP subscription starting in mid-July.

What other changes are coming during summer 2018? Most of our D.C.-based content (for foodservice and foodies) will be published online at swizzlechill.com and we will be launching Streem and Packett, two multimedia information products for the benefit of our national foodservice audience. As already announced, we’ll be releasing a print edition for Eatery Pulse News in October, as well.

BLOG AUTHOR

Rick Zambrano is the editor of Eatery Pulse Media’s food & drink and foodservice publications, including Eatery Pulse News, Restaurant C-Suite Magazine and Swizzle Chill magazines. Additionally, he is the producer and director of Swizzle Chill TV's 4K UHD web-broadcast shows in Washington, D.C. Zambrano is also a consultant, with a specialization in food costing, financial analysis and profit optimization. His works and commentary have appeared in business & trade publications and food industry research reports.


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