Foodable Premieres First Full-Length Documentary During NRA Show, Announces New Partnerships

Last night marked a milestone achievement for Foodable as our first full-length documentary, “Fast Casual Nation: Changing the Way America Eats,” premiered its first screening. The night also revealed some exciting upcoming things for Foodable in partnership with the National Restaurant Association, which we’ll dive into more below.

Hosted at the Virgin Hotels Chicago, the premiere party featured an open bar, a step and repeat and a private film screening for a select, invite-only group of 175 industry professionals. 

Following the main event was an intimate VIP dinner at the Virgin Hotel’s Miss Ricky’s, where guests noshed on American comfort food classics, followed by a toast 26 floors up at Cerise, the venue’s chic rooftop bar.


Introducing the film were NRA President & CEO Dawn Sweeney; NRA Industry Relations & Director of Product Partner Development Sam Stanovich; NRA Chief Innovation & Member Advancement Officer Phil Kafarakis; FCIC Chair & Wow Bao President Geoff Alexander; and Foodable Founder & CEO and Executive Producer Paul Barron.

Before the screening, Kafarakis and Barron announced an upcoming NRA x Foodable partnership on two new ventures: a film festival and the Foodable 5-Star Awards, which will be rewarded at the NRA’s Restaurant Innovation Summit in San Diego in October 2015.

“Fast Casual Nation: Changing the Way America Eats” is a full-length documentary, coming to Netflix this summer, that deep dives into the world of fast casual, the fastest growing dining segment in the restaurant industry. What’s driving fast casual? Who is pioneering the segment? How has fast casual evolved throughout the past decade and beyond? “Fast Casual Nation” follows the story from the beginning with industry insider interviews from fast casual vanguards, including Panera Bread Founder & CEO Ron Shaich, Shake Shack CEO Randy Garutti and Chipotle CMO Mark Crumpacker, to hone in on how fast casual is changing the way America eats. Check out the trailer below!

Fast Casual Trends TV: FCIC Chair & Wow Bao President Geoff Alexander [VIDEO]

We are kicking off a brand new season of Fast Casual Trends TV with a new look, inside the Foodable HQ studio! On this premier episode, brought to you by the Foodable Network and Technomic, we catch up with Geoff Alexander, Fast Casual Industry Council (FCIC) Chair and President of Chicago fast casual Wow Bao. Watch the full episode as Alexander discusses fast casual expansion, how this segment is bringing more approachability to chef-driven fare, why the future holds more value in this space for the consumer, and what to look forward to at this year’s Fast Casual Trends & Directions Conference. (Bonus: If you’re a fast casual operator, learn more about how you can get involved with the FCIC.)