If, as they say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, fast casual restaurants should be flattered by the recent efforts of McDonald’s and other quick-serve restaurants.  Many fast feeders are trying to emulate chains like Chipotle, Smashburger, and Panera, since fast casual players have stolen share from them for the last couple of years […]

2012, according to the Chinese calendar, is the Year of the Dragon.  In Chinese tradition, each year is dedicated to a specific animal and predictions for 2012 are for a dragon-like year of excitement, unpredictability, exhilaration, and intensity. With this expectation in mind, I’ve selected several brands to keep my eye on.  They’re likely to […]

(Welcome to the latest “brand experience brief” — insights from my audits of new and interesting retail and restaurant concepts.) What:  ihop express test concept from the 1500-unit casual dining chain, IHOP targeted to “Millennials who don’t do breakfast,” the format is intended to give the younger target “an on-the-go option” since they don’t go […]

Last week David Ristau, the analyst who publishes daily stock recommendations in The Oxen Report, weighed in on the fast/casual dining industry with predictions for 10 fast/casual companies in the coming year. Chipotle, McDonald’s, and Domino’s were among the companies he analyzed based on growth, profitability, financial health, value, and management. […]

DLYohn America’s Next Great Restaurant 05.01.11 Finale Recap from Denise Lee Yohn on Vimeo. For important takeaways for aspiring restaurateurs and other entrepreneurs, check out the full series of my show recaps: engage your employees with your brand — episode 8 deciding what NOT to do — episode 7 the customer isn’t always right — […]

DLYohn America’s Next Great Restaurant 04.24.11 Episode 8 Recap from Denise Lee Yohn on Vimeo. other insights from the show: targeting and focus are more important that size and mass appeal — episode 7 recap attention to detail can make or break a business — episode 6 recap the adage “the customer is always right” […]

DLYohn America’s Next Great Restaurant 04.17.11 Episode 7 Recap from Denise Lee Yohn on Vimeo. other recaps of america’s next great restaurant show: how attention to detail can make or break a business — episode 6 recap why the adage “the customer is always right” isn’t always right — episode 5 recap 3 keys to […]