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Hamilton Beach Commercial Blog


Paleo? Gluten-Free? Do's and Don'ts for Adapting Menus to Diet Trends

We're not quite ready to trade our morning mug of coffee for a hot cup of bone broth, or our blueberry muffin for a gluten-free scone. But your customers might be.

The paleo diet has grown to become "one of the most influential dietary trends in the country, with as many as three million followers and a disproportionate cultural influence," reports Salon. And as many as one in five Americans include gluten-free foods in their diets, Gallup found.

Considering altering your menu so you can join the ranks of paleo restaurants or gluten-free restaurants? Here's a look at the dos and don'ts for restaurateurs.

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Topics: Gluten-free, Restaurant management, Featured, Menu, Paleo

Why Pasadena’s famed Pie ‘N Burger has thrived for more than 50 years

When you call famed Pasadena diner Pie 'N Burger, owner Michael Osborn answers the phone. "I've been here pretty much in the front of the house for over 42 years," he says.

Founded in 1963, Pie 'N Burger is a tiny spot — five tables, 25 counter seats and an open kitchen — on East California Boulevard. Osborn began working for the restaurant in 1972, when he was a pre-dental major at the University of Southern California. "I knew I didn't want to be a dentist," he says. "Beyond that, I didn't know what I wanted to do." The answer, he discovered, was running Pie 'N Burger. Over the years, he gradually took over the business from its original owners and eventually purchased it outright.

The restaurant has thrived since then. Instead of remaining just a quaint local institution, Pie 'N Burger has become nationally known through an appearance on The Travel Channel’s "Burger Land." It's Zagat-rated and consistently wins awards for its food.

(Photo Credit: Pie 'N Burger- For 35 years, Pie 'N Burger's burgers have been made using an old family recipe and prime, freshly ground beef from the same small butcher shop.)

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Topics: Restaurant management, Durability, Classic diners, Spindle mixers, Restaurant longevity, Customer Service

How to go green, save money and pull in customers


The move to a greener operating style is paying off for restaurants of all sizes. Fully 79 percent of consumers prefer dining at certified green restaurants, according to the Green Restaurant Association. "Consumers are a lot more educated now than they used to be," says Michael Oshman, founder of the association. And going green, he says, helps solve two perennial challenges for restaurants: "How can I save money, and how can I bring customers in?"

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Topics: Restaurant management, Durability, Operational efficiency, Green Restaurants, Food, Customer Service

Diners’ expectations vary widely from casual to luxury

Food, service, and atmosphere are the three main components in any dining experience, but which matters most and how is “good” defined? Coyle Hospitality studied data from nearly 2,500 diners worldwide and found that diners’ views varied according to how much they were spending.

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Topics: Waitstaff, Dining environment, Atmosphere, Restaurant management, Research, Featured, Food, Restaurants

How South American food won a city in the American South

When Jessica and Josh Bufford opened Estilo in the suburbs of Richmond, Virginia, the most common question they heard from guests was, “Is this just fancy Mexican food?”

The restaurant opened in August 2013, and in January 2014 it won the “Best New Restaurant” award from Richmond Magazine. Now the mesa Latina is packed for lunch and dinner nearly every day of the week. Clearly the Buffords are doing more than a few things right, including riding the waves of two key trends—Latin American food and gluten-free kitchens—and managing the restaurant with the perfect balance of art and science.

Estilo's signature dish, Duck Confit Pozole (right).

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Topics: Gluten-free, Latin America, Peru, Restaurant management, Brazil, Featured, Feature, Food, Restaurants

Creative solutions for a loud dining room

Gone are the days of quiet dining rooms. Noise is in, and restaurants are pumping up their sound systems, embracing sound-reflecting hard surfaces and enlarging their bars. As food critic Adam Platt writes, "ask any weary gastronaut about the single most disruptive restaurant trend over the past decade or so... they’ll give you a succinct, one-sentence answer. It’s the noise, stupid.”

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Topics: Dining environment, Atmosphere, Noise, Restaurant management, Featured, Food, feat

Five ways to keep servers happy

Happier employees are more productive employees. It's not just a truism—it's science. A team of researchers recently found that the happy participants in a study completed 10 to 12 percent more math problems correctly than those who were stressed and unhappy.

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Topics: Waitstaff, Tips, Servers, Restaurant management, Featured, Food, Customer Service

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