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jCarbonara
Joe Carbonara

All Hail the Food Hall

Beyond the varied menu and service styles, food halls often feature a retail component, which allows customers to take a portion of their experience home to enjoy later.

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jMartinez
Juan Martinez

Is Supplier Consolidation Good or Bad?

The foodservice equipment and supplies industry has experienced a significant amount of consolidation of late. In fact, during the month of June, FE&S reported on four dealers buying five different companies. Rapid consolidation like this can make one wonder: If this keeps going on, will there only be one equipment supplier standing? Read more...

jStiegler
Jerry Stiegler

This Week in Foodservice: Weak Casual Dining Sales, Redesigns Pay Off in Sales, Automats Reinvented and Naugles’ Attempt to Grow

Weekly roundup of news that's worthy of a second glance: Knapp-Track shows weak casual dining sales – again; decline in U.S. restaurants; restaurant redesigns pay off in higher sales; old automats reincarnated; and the Attempt to Revive Naugles.

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Highlights

Says Who? - Stephanie Izard, chef and restaurant owner

After clinching the Top Chef title during Bravo! TV's Season 4 and winning the viewer's choice popularity award, Stephanie Izard collaborated with the Boka Restaurant Group in Chicago to open Girl & the Goat. At her gastropub meets cool cocktail party space, designed by 555 International, Izard concentrates on local, Midwestern foods as well as hearty meats like roasted pig face and sweetbreads that pair well with the lineup of craft beers on draft. Izard also demonstrates her delicate hand with seafood and vegetables, a skill she honed at her former restaurant, Scylla. FE&S caught up with the celebrity chef to find out what got her to where she is today.

sayswho_background Stephanie Izard

FE&S: Who was the person that influenced your career most?

Stephanie Izard: Every chef I worked for influenced my career in one way or another. It's hard not to be impacted by chefs who taught you the ins and outs of their kitchens.

FE&S: If you were not working in foodservice, what would you be doing?

Stephanie Izard: Scuba instructor — that is my retirement plan anyway, so stay tuned.

FE&S: What type of charitable activities are you involved in?

Stephanie Izard: I work with Common Threads, Share our Strength, National Cerebral Palsy and many more. I enjoy working with charities focused primarily on children or those with disabilities. (Common Threads is a non-profit organization dedicated to teaching low-income children to cook wholesome and affordable meals while celebrating our cultural differences. The advisory board consists of a number of acclaimed Chicago chefs, including Izard. Art Smith, Oprah Winfrey's former personal chef and the current owner of Table Fifty-Two in Chicago and Art + Soul in Washington D.C., is one of Common Threads' co-founders.)

FE&S: Certainly the restaurant keeps you busy but do you leave time for any interesting hobbies?

Stephanie Izard: Hobbies? Well, before the restaurant I used to have many. I love scuba diving and swimming. I was a competitive swimmer growing up and still love it as much as I did back then.

FE&S: What was your first job in foodservice?

Stephanie Izard: Before being a waitress at Olive Garden I worked in my dorm cafeteria at the University of Michigan. I still sing the Olive Garden Happy Birthday song to my staff sometimes. They get a kick out of it.

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