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that we’ve grown up with, and also why these foods also have regional characteristics, whether global or American. “Consumers are not grounded or confident,” says Badaracco. “They revert back to comfort food—partially. So, we see retreat to historical and region-specific cuisines.” Take, for example, the rise of chilaquiles, a Mexican dish made with fried eggs and softened tortilla strips that are bathed in red or green salsa or sauce, and shakshuka, a Mediterranean dish comprising poached eggs simmered in a tomato broth with cumin and chili pepper. As restaurant chains continue to explore the adoption of global flavors and dishes, they also need to strike a balance between experimentation and comfort. “Right now, consumers are pulling back to the familiar, not all the way back to comfort, but they are not in an all-out experimental mood right now,” adds Badaracco. “They are looking for safe experimentation, trusted sources, authentic recipes, ingredients they recognize, and ease with pleasing entire family, and transparency.”

What is driving interest in breakfast now? Breakfast occasions have been on the rise, and breakfast is transforming the foodservice landscape. Quick-service restaurants have been responding to consumers’ increased desire for breakfast, which has transitioned away from the home. Through the end of this year, breakfast occasions are forecasted to grow by five percent, according to research firm NPD. Additionally, a report from the National Restaurant Association indicates 52 percent of consumers would like restaurant operators to offer breakfast throughout the day. Restaurant chains like McDonald’s have made it possible to get breakfast items at any time, responding to this opportunity, but

there’s still a long way to go before we see this become common practice. For restaurants, there is a strong economic driver to offer breakfast and build incremental sales in the morning hours, and additionally across afternoon and evening hours, when it is offered throughout the day. Over the past five years, fast-casual chains have toiled to expand their breakfast menus, as well as improve coffee and other morning beverages. When Taco Rock, a new, fast-casual concept from Chef Mike Cordero, opens up in Arlington, VA., a suburb of Washington, D.C., its owners plan to serve breakfast tacos. This will be a strong morning sales driver, as the restaurant is located near major transit points in a busy workplace district known as Rosslyn. Corner Bakery is an example of a fast-casual chain that is giving customers a reason to stop in during the breakfast rush. It now offers a full complement of breakfast platters, paninis and the skinny “Power Flats,” served on thin, multigrain flatbreads, in addition to its hearty scrambler dishes as well. The Power Flats are a menu option that represents healthier breakfast fare. During the winter season, the Dallas-based chain also adds more proteinfocused offerings, such as its Carved Ham & Swiss and Bacon Avocado Egg Bowls. Media has picked up on the importance of breakfast, sharing clinical studies connecting breakfast with healthier living and augmenting its importance, notes Badaracco. The data driving home this message is fairly robust, so breakfast has a new place on the table, so to speak. “The University of Missouri found skipping breakfast could lead to an increased risk of developing Type 2 diabetes and heart disease,” she says, “and Columbia University found that skipping breakfast leads to elevated cholesterol compared with RESTAURANT C-SUITE 25

Profile for Eatery Pulse Media

Restaurant C-Suite Magazine | Spring 2019  

As Restaurant C-Suite Magazine is a trend-based news source, we continue to dive deeper into 2019 trends in this issue, including zero waste...

Restaurant C-Suite Magazine | Spring 2019  

As Restaurant C-Suite Magazine is a trend-based news source, we continue to dive deeper into 2019 trends in this issue, including zero waste...