Very Important Beverage Professionals Chain Beverage Buzz: August 4, 2014

Red Robin Gourmet Burgers Celebrates 500th RestaurantRed Robin Gourmet Burgers Celebrates its 500th New Restaurant Opening
Red Robin Gourmet Burgers, Inc. (Red Robin) is one week away from a milestone grand opening! Red Robin’s 500th new restaurant opening will open today Aug. 4 at 11 a.m., in Milpitas, Calif. at the Great Mall of the Bay Area. To celebrate, Red Robin restaurants nationwide will offer its loyal Red Robin Royalty members $5 off a purchase of $10 or more* on Aug. 5. MORE>>

Darden CEO to Step DownDarden CEO to Step Down
Clarence Otis is no longer chairman for Darden Restaurants, Inc., and he also plans to step down as chief executive officer. He will continue serving as CEO until a successor is appointed or until Dec. 31, whichever comes first. The announcement came on July 28, the same day Orlando-based Darden Restaurants said it had completed the sale of the Red Lobster business to Golden Gate Capital, a private equity investment firm based in San Francisco. MORE>>

Craft beerNothing Bitter About Craft Beer’s Rising Popularity
The remarkable rise in popularity of craft beer in Australia might be driving mainstream brewery executives to the bottle, but for Glenn Cary, chief executive of the independent Balmain Brewing Company, it is only the beginning. MORE>>

National Restaurant AssociationSteady Job Growth Bodes Well for Restaurants
The restaurant industry remains among the top sectors in post-recession job growth, according to new figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  Eating and drinking places added a net 18,600 jobs in July on a seasonally-adjusted basis, the 53rd straight monthly increase and 25th consecutive month with gains of at least 10,000 jobs.  MORE>>

DiageoWhiskies Drive 5% U.S. Growth For Diageo, As Cîroc Slips On Pricing Pressure
Diageo continues to enjoy solid sales momentum in its core U.S. spirits and wine business, led by its American and Scotch whisk(e)y brands. In the 12 months through June, representing its full fiscal year, the drinks giant saw 5% organic sales growth across its U.S. spirits and wine portfolio, which offset a marked slowdown in emerging markets. MORE>>

Summer RestaurantTrends5 Hot Summer Food and Beverage Trends
Economic recovery is often reflected in culinary trends. Improved consumer confidence tends to foster exuberance in restaurant kitchens as chefs experiment with new flavors, combinations and techniques. However, although macroeconomic indicators currently show improvement, food and beverage trends are retrenching a bit this summer as restaurateurs see customers double-down on the familiar. MORE>>

Iced TeaReading the Tea Leaves
According to the trade group Tea Association of the USA, Americans drank more than 79 billion servings of tea in 2012, or more than 3.6 billion gallons, of which an estimated 85 percent was served iced. Moreover, according to the association, supermarket tea sales alone exceeded $2.25 billion in 2012, and away-from-home consumption has been growing by at least 10 percent annually over the past decade. MORE>>

Trends in GlasswareCurrent Trends in Glassware
One of the hottest trends to hit drinkware in recent years was the Mason jar, a popular vehicle for all types of beverages, from iced tea to bourbon, and across all geographic regions. The Mason jar trend might have sprung to life in Southern cafes and summer picnics, but restaurants from New York to California embraced it as a trendy pitcher for individual libations. MORE>>

WineShaping Consumers' Wine Decisions
Around half of U.S. adults ages 21 and older are wine drinkers, and wine consumption continues to trend upward—up 2.2% across the country in 2013, according to Technomic’s 2014 WineTAB Report. But wine can be a confusing adult beverage category for consumers, and it can be difficult for those selling wine to them to discern exactly why they buy what they buy. MORE>>

Outback SteakhouseOutback Steakhouse Welcomes 'Mates' in Orlando to Celebrate Grand Opening of Newly Designed Restaurant
Outback Steakhouse is debuting its newest restaurant location in Orlando, Florida, at the Orlando Eye, opening its doors at 11 a.m. on Monday, August 4. To show its support of the local community, 50% of the restaurant's opening day sales (up to $5,000.00) will benefit Give Kids The World. The new restaurant will serve lunch daily and will be the first in the Orlando area to feature a new "Modern Australia" design both inside and out. MORE>>



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