Seattle's Chef John Sundstrom Breaks Down a Spanish-Styled, Braised Wild Alaska Pollock Dish

Seattle's Chef John Sundstrom Breaks Down a Spanish-Styled, Braised Wild Alaska Pollock Dish

On this episode of On Foodable, we are featuring Chef John Sundstrom, owner of Lark Restaurant in Seattle, who will be working with underutilized, wild Alaska pollock, provided by Trident Seafoods, to make a rustic Spanish-style dish. This is the first episode out of our four-part series of chef demos that were filmed at our Foodable.io Seattle event, sponsored by the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute.

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Cannabis Fine Dining has Arrived in California But Is it There to Stay?

Cannabis Fine Dining has Arrived in California But Is it There to Stay?

Fine dining chefs in California cities like Los Angeles and San Francisco are now incorporating cannabis into their menus. 

The cannabis dining trend continues to gain momentum. There are even a few shows like Cooking on High and Bong Appetite, both focused on cannabis-infused cuisine. 

Not all gourmet ganja dishes are meant to give those diners that head "high." With the legalization of marijuana, there is an array of concentrates available.  

"THC is the cannabis compound that can get users high. CBD is different. It's another cannabis compound that lacks psychoactive properties. Fans believe CBD relieves anxiety and pain, and it's become a popular ingredient in cocktails," writes "NPR."

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Will Noma Be Eligible to Top the World’s 50 Best Restaurants List Yet Again This Year?

Will Noma Be Eligible to Top the World’s 50 Best Restaurants List Yet Again This Year?

As an operator, making the decision to temporarily close your restaurant is a risky one. 

Whether its because the restaurant needs some renovations or it needs to be refresh entirely, it's often an expensive endeavor because you aren't making revenue during this time period.

In 2017, the renowned Chef René Redzepi decided to close his award-winning Copenhagen restaurant Noma to reopen the concept in a new and improved space. 

 “The point is that we dare again to fail, whereas with the old Noma, it had to be perfect," said Redzepi in June of 2017. 

The two Michelin-star restaurant has morphed into a culinary success since opening in 2003, attracting food-enthusiasts from all over the world. 

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Will Startup Hungry Planet™ Gain Momentum After Recent Success in a California School District?

Will Startup Hungry Planet™ Gain Momentum After Recent Success in a California School District?

A California school district began to offer plant-based meals across all their cafeterias this past academic year and had students choose whether or not they wanted to eat them based on taste. “The initiative was so successful, the meals will likely be offered again next year,” reports KEYT.

We’ve heard about companies like Impossible Food and Beyond Meat making their way in restaurants, but the Santa Barbara Unified School District actually sourced her plant-based protein from a startup based out of Missouri. It’s called Hungry Planet™.

According to the company’s website, it focuses on creating an alternative protein to ground beef, chicken, pork, Italian sausage, chorizo sausage, and crab for culinary professionals to use as a 1:1 substitution in innovative entrees. The company says it develops its faux meats to delight the demanding tastes of meat lovers in the heart of the Midwest.

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Serenbe: The Utopian Community Balancing Development with Green Space

Serenbe: The Utopian Community Balancing Development with Green Space
  • Serenbe creates Cluster Communities to maximize green space

  • Utopian community uses nature and art to focus their lifestyle.

On this episode of The Barron Report, brought to you by Off-Premise Insights, Paul talks to a different type of hospitality professional. Steve Nygren is the founder of Serenbe, a community that has been described as a “Utopian experiment.” Nygren comes from the restaurant and hospitality industry, boasting experience with Stouffers Hotels and later opening more than 30 restaurants under his own name.

The idea for Serenbe came after Nygren moved his family to a multi-acre farm. Fearing serious development by a neighbor, Nygren began buying up land around his plot to ensure his green space would remain. The idea evolved to create a development in which 70% of the space would be reserved for green space, rather than conforming to the current models of urban sprawl.

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Plant-Based Seafood Company Ocean Hugger Unveils Aggressive Expansion Plan

Plant-Based Seafood Company Ocean Hugger Unveils Aggressive Expansion Plan

Chef James Corwell walked into the Tsukiji fish market in Tokyo one day to find over 100,000 square feet of endangered yellowfin and bluefin tuna. All was sold in one morning.

According to a study published in the journal Nature, 90% of all large predatory fish (like tuna) are already gone, and the rate of fishing isn't slowing down.

One of only 60 Certified Master Chefs in the U.S., Corwell realized at this moment that “the oceans cofoodble puld never keep up” and thus, Ocean Hugger Foods was born.

Ocean Hugger Foods is, at its base, a plant-based meat and seafood alternatives company. But according to FoodNavigator-USA, what sets this company apart is that rather than using textured soy, pea or wheat protein with oils, gums, starches, and flavors, Ocean Hugger Foods begins with vegetables and keeps their ingredient lists short and simple.

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Don’t Miss These 2018 Hospitality Marketing Digital Trends

Don’t Miss These 2018 Hospitality Marketing Digital Trends

As popular as online platforms are these days, it is important to not discount content made with desktop computers in mind, especially when it comes to marketing for your hospitality business.

At least that was one of the takeaways from the infographic by MDG Advertising on “Hospitality Marketing in 2018: 5 Digital Trends to Watch.”

The agency is predicting many changes in the space for 2018. The main reason why is because it is constantly affected by evolving technologies and consumer trends— including a growing Gen Z population.

Although the infographic takes a deep dive analysis of how these changes will affect the travel industry, these demographic and tendency changes affect all brands in the hospitality space, including restaurants.

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Trump's New Tip Pooling Rule Means Harsh Fines for Rule-Breakers

Trump's New Tip Pooling Rule Means Harsh Fines for Rule-Breakers

First, the back story:  The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) sets the rules for paying minimum wage and overtime.  It allows employers to take a tip credit against its minimum wage obligations if certain conditions are met.  One of those conditions is that tipped employees must be allowed to retain all of their tips. There is one exception to this – that employers can require employees to participate in a valid tip pooling arrangement.  

There are various requirements for a tip pool to be valid but most importantly, the tips can only be shared with people who customarily and regularly receive tips. Typically, these jobs are in the front of the house.

The FLSA is silent as to whether these same restrictions apply to employers who don’t take a tip credit and instead just pay a full minimum wage.  In 2010, the Ninth Circuit ruled that they don’t apply if you don’t take the tip credit. In 2011, the DOL issued regulations saying that they apply whether you take the tip credit or not.

The Tip Pooling Loophole

In 2017, the Trump Administration proposed a rule that would clarify this issue.  

The rule sought to allow employers who pay a full minimum wage to include back of house workers in a tip pool.  But the rule as proposed left open a potential loophole – that in giving employers control over the tips (under the expectation that they would use them to pay back of house workers) that the rule would have also allowed employers to pocket the tips if they wanted to.  

This prompted an enormous uproar and ultimately the administration scaled back; the law would be revised to make clear that employers cannot under any circumstances keep any portion of their employees’ tips.

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Mike Isabella's Sexual Harassment Case Got Upgraded to the Federal Court

Mike Isabella's Sexual Harassment Case Got Upgraded to the Federal Court

Last month, Chloe Caras, a former manager for Mike Isabella, filed a lawsuit against the celebrity chef in D.C. Superior Court. Since then, that suit was dismissed by her lawyers to file a new one at the federal level.

As reported by “The Washington Post,” an expanded lawsuit filed in federal court this week by Caras’ lawyers alleges that Isabella’s company used non-disclosure agreements to discourage employees from speaking out about sexual harassment.

The NDAs, which involve a $500,000 penalty every time the agreement is breached, have caused that many witnesses to the hostile and sexually charged work environment— allegedly fostered by Mike Isabella and his business partners (Taha Ismail, Yohan Allender, George Pagonis, and Nicholas Pagonis)—speak in anonymity.

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New Spending Bill Bans Restaurants From Skimming Tips

New Spending Bill Bans Restaurants From Skimming Tips

President Donald Trump just signed a $1.3 trillion spending bill into law Friday that included a section that addresses restaurants and makes it clear that employers may not pocket any portion of tips that diners have left for restaurant staff.

Saru Jayaraman, president of the nonprofit Restaurant Opportunities Center said to CNN Money, “We beat them. I think they realized how outrageous what they were proposing sounded to the public, and basically they backed down.”

But that “them” Jayaraman was referring to must have been Congress, as Restaurant industry representatives also showed approval for the rule.

Angelo Amador, senior VP at the National Restaurant Association, argued that most employers wouldn't skim tips even if they were allowed to.

"A decision by a restaurant to retain some or all of the customer tips rather than distributing them to the hourly staff would be unpopular with employees and guests alike, and it could severely damage the public's perception of the restaurant," Amador wrote in his comment on the proposed rule.

The language in the spending bill also does another big thing: It allows employers to pool tips and distribute them among staff, as long as the employer also pays the full minimum wage. Many owners have long sought to boost the pay of kitchen workers and bussers by forcing servers to share their tips.

That's fine with labor advocates at the National Employment Law Project, who say that pooling tips is a good way to create wage equity, as long workers are paid the full minimum wage and tips aren't shared with managers or any other supervisors. "We enthusiastically support this compromise," said Judy Conti, the group's director of federal affairs.

You can read more about the new spending bill and its implications at CNN Money.

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