Domino’s and lunch-breakfast chain Another Broken Egg Cafe were honored today with Leaders in Foodservice Awards for outpacing the restaurant industry in their sales growth and embrace of innovation.
Domino’s won in the quick-service category, and Another Broken Egg took the prize in the full-service competition.
Leaders in Foodservice Awards were also presented to QuikTrip in the convenience-store classification, and the employee-feeding operations of Microsoft Corp. in the noncommercial sector.
The awards program, now in its eighth year, recognizes the foodservice operations that exemplify the evolution and potential of foodservice in their respective channels. Winners are chosen by the editors of Restaurant Business and FoodService Director magazines in concert with their sister Winsight Media titles serving the retail sector, CSP and Convenience Store Products, as well as the FARE Advisory Council, a steering group for Winsight’s FARE Conference. The honors were bestowed at this year’s FARE event, where foodservice leaders across all channels gather for a download on trends and best practices.
“If there’s a theme among this year’s winners, it’s leading innovation,” said Abbie Westra, group director for Winsight’s retail division. “Each of the brands has made it a priority to feed the evolving demands of their consumers, offering unique menus, operating platforms and experiences.”
Here’s a look at the winners.
The pizza delivery chain has dodged the sales slowdown hamstringing many other quick-service operations, posting a 10.2% domestic same-store sales gain for the first quarter of 2017, following a 12.2% increase in the fourth quarter of 2016. Since the chain famously dissed its pizza in commercials promoting revamped pies, it has been upgrading everything from ordering technology to staff training to store design. This year, Domino’s jumped onto the ranking of the top 10 chain restaurants by U.S. systemwide sales, according to Winsight's research arm Technomic, and it shows no signs of slowing.
Another Broken Egg Cafe
When Ron Green opened Another Broken Egg Cafe in 1996, his vision was to create a more upscale concept with a foodie-driven menu. The chain—the winner in the full-service restaurant category—now has about 60 locations, most of them franchised, and increased sales by 17% in 2016. This breakfast-and-lunch chain leans on its cozy French country ambiance, upscale breakfast and brunch dishes, and $12 average check to set it apart. The menu balances indulgent items with healthier ones and offers cocktails, including a prize-winning bloody mary and mimosa.
Microsoft Global Dining Services
With the resources of one of the nation’s most prominent tech companies behind it, how does Microsoft Global Dining Services harness all that power? The answer: by providing diners transparency about where their food comes from and how it’s taken care of, such as a “misfit produce” program that endorses imperfect produce and hydroponic towers that grow lettuce and microgreens on-site. With an estimated $110 million in revenue, Microsoft is the largest business-and-industry foodservice provider in the country. Microsoft earns its Leaders in Foodservice Award in the noncommercial category.
This year’s winner in the convenience-store channel has only been selling fresh food for about a decade, but the c-store chain is already seen as an industry leader. Its focus is on providing clean, well-maintained locations and outstanding customer service. The Tulsa, Okla.-based chain has invested millions of dollars creating its own food commissary, hiring recipe specialists, and launching a fresh food and gourmet coffee program. Last year, it captured an estimated $430 million in foodservice sales.