The Main Dish: The Real Deal About Mocktails, Event Planning 101, and Other Highlights From This Week

In the age of information overload, refinement is key. That was the thought behind The Main Dish — a quick compilation of the most bookmark-worthy links from the Foodable WebTV Network. Aside from our usual daily content, every Sunday, The Main Dish will serve a fresh batch of handpicked pieces of the most appetizing lists & literature that you may have missed.

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4 Promotional Ideas That Actually Work

Running a promotion is a great way to get guests into your seats at your restaurant. It’s also a fun way to keep your loyal customer base engaged with events or specials that you have going on. But where do you even start? When you Google “restaurant promotion ideas,” you get about 21 million search results. If that’s not overwhelming enough, how do you decide if any of these ideas actually work?

Crowd Cow: An Innovative Alternative to Industrialized Beef

Gone are the days when diners were oblivious about where their food was coming from. Today’s consumer is all about food transparency and often makes their dining decisions based on where the food is being sourced. Even though this is the case, the meat industry seems hesitant to cater to eater’s increasing interest in sourcing. 

Is Your Menu Truly Gluten-Free? Training Your Back and Front of House Staff

So, you’ve decided to meet the demands for gluten-free fare on your menu. Ask yourself these questions: Are you all in? Confident in your kitchen practices and staff to make the right decisions? Willing to risk it all?  Managing this type of menu at your restaurant affects not just the back of house, but the front of house, too. With the right policies and procedures, you’ll have the best hand in the game.

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Mocktails Are the Real Deal for Drinkers Who Don't Feel Like Drinking: Q&A With Manhattan Beach Post

They may be called mocktails, but these drinks are the real deal when it comes to trends in the beverage sector. While dinner and drinks will always be a common joint venture for outings, non-alcoholic drinks are bubbling up, and so are the expectations for booze-free beverages besides a soda, sweet tea, or standard lemonade.

The Story Behind 'Fast Casual Nation' and the Film's Mission

From its first screening at the 2015 National Restaurant Association Show to becoming available on demand earlier this year, the journey to "Fast Casual Nation: Changing the Way America Eats" has been a long one. However, much longer than that, the story of this full-length documentary actually began a decade ago.

Event Planning and Management 101 for Restaurant Owners

As Nicholas Miller, co-founder and CEO of event management software Gather (which works with plenty of national brands, hospitality groups, and independents that have been private-equity backed or James Beard Award-winning) wrote, "If you don't already have a private dining, events, or large group program in place, you are missing out on a growing revenue opportunity." Events are another entry point for cash to flow in.