Foodservice Equipment & Supplies

SEP 2017

Foodservice Equipment & Supplies magazines is an industry resource connecting foodservice operators, equipment and supplies manufacturers and dealers, and facility design consultants.

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92 • FOODSERVICE EQUIPMENT & SUPPLIES • SEPTEMBER 2017 trends have evolved. "When we first started, we did all composed plates — protein, vegetable, starch on every plate," Harron says. "That's how our target demographic grew up eating. But we've changed our thinking on the culinary side and updated our approach. We continue to of- fer many traditional presenta- tions, but we're also offering new menu items that appeal to the next wave of diners looking for more interesting, Instagrammable presenta- tions, bolder flavors and specialty ingredients. We're putting a much stronger focus on innovation and challeng- ing our culinary teams to do more creative, local things to complement our core menu." As part of recent re- branding efforts, Burtons dropped separate lunch and dinner menus in favor of a one-menu-all-day format, a move designed to increase traffic by drawing in dinner guests who might prefer a $13 or $14 sandwich over a $25 entree. Harron says the strategy has worked: Check averages are down slightly as a result, to $54 or $55 per person with alcohol, but 10 of 12 Burtons units have increased guest counts significantly. CUSTOM MEAL OPTIONS Burtons' menu includes specialty sandwiches such as California Chicken, featur- ing bronzed chicken, Black Forest ham, chipotle mayo, guacamole and Vermont cheddar on griddled cia- batta, and Short Rib Grilled Cheese, featuring braised cer- tified Angus Beef short ribs with pickled onions, maple sriracha, Vermont cheddar and red wine jus. Signature entrees include Mediterra- nean Chicken Risotto with artichoke hearts, marinated tomatoes, spinach, basil, feta, lemon butter sauce and pesto, and Salmon Romesco with bronzed Maine salmon, Romesco sauce, herbed jasmine rice, vegetables and citrus fennel slaw. Steaks are aged 21 days and hand-cut daily in-house. Customers with a preference for a particular size or cut of steak are encouraged to call in their request ahead of their visit to reserve a customized steak. Such customization, along with what the chain promotes as its "legendary scratch kitchen," is central to Burtons' positioning. Over the years, its commitment to accommodat- ing guests with dietary restric- tions or allergies has been key as well. In 2017, Burtons topped the list of allergy- friendly small chains by rating service Allergy Eats. "We have always offered customized meals, and from that, we started to get into a lot more allergy aware- ness and to build a proto- col around that," Harron says. "We also have a great children's menu called {B} Choosy that's modeled on the USDA's MyPlate program. It allows kids to choose from a list of ingredients and prepa- ration methods to customize their own nutritionally bal- anced meals." Like its menu, Burtons' appearance has evolved to stay relevant and to better position it for renewed growth. A new prototype design introduced last year in Charlotte, N.C., Above: Targeting Baby Boomers with a taste for the finer things, Burtons brings its polished-casual dining model to select markets from New Hampshire to Florida. The brand's new design prototype features an open kitchen and a U-shaped central bar. Left: Burtons' menu strategy has changed as dining trends have evolved. While traditional favor- ites remain, there's a stronger focus today on culinary innovation, bolder flavors, specialty and local ingredients, and Instagrammable presentations. 7 EMERGING CHAINS

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