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3 trendlettes we’re watching in August

Millennials aren’t the only consumers making ripples in the restaurant industry this month. To please parents as well as Gen Zers, operators are taking a look at what they offer various age groups. And expect more courting of the same-sex marriage market after the Supreme Court’s landmark decision.

New distractions for kids

Though cryptic on the details, Red Robin has hinted at new initiatives, such as a wall where kids can draw, and Ruby Tuesday is testing a new weekday night where dinner is devoted to the kids. Those initiatives follow Olive Garden’s test of a Little Italy Kids Night, which featured interactive coloring projects.

Post-SCOTUS catering bump

The Supreme Court’s recognition of same-sex marriages as a nationwide civil right likely will mean a 5 percent increase—more than $2.5 billion in total wedding expenditures—for local businesses, predicts NerdWallet.com.

Taste matters to Gen Z

When choosing a restaurant, millennials are more apt to look for organic and premium ingredients and healthy menu options, but 33 percent of consumers 21 and younger care more about convenience, price and taste, according to new Technomic research.

Bonus trendlette:
This little piggy (in a blanket)

The home cook’s favorite hors d’oeuvre is getting a makeover on menus this summer. Cinnabon offers a sweet take with its sausage bites wrapped in cinnamon-roll dough, and Pizza Hut has rimmed its latest pie with a savory version. Sonic added a Little Dog earlier in the year, though the mini-frank is served in a hot dog roll, albeit considerably smaller.

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