Taste Tracker

Pat Cobe

Every week, Senior Menu Editor Pat Cobe takes a look at the latest new menu news from major chains and menu trends. The column features extensive work from RB Art Director Nico Heins on a visual presentation.

Food

Menus turn more comforting to chase winter chills

Breakfast warms up at Toasted Yolk and Dunkin’; Zaxby’s and Slim Chickens riff on chicken; new bowls star at Sweetgreen; BJ’s and Cinnaholic sweeten the menu.

Food

As the year winds down, easy-to-execute, easy-to-eat items steer menus

Taste Tracker: Grimaldi’s and Papa Johns riff on pizza; new takes on Mexican icons at Taco Cabana and Dickey’s; Jack in the Box and Wings Over spin chicken sandwiches; and winter flavors stand out across the board.

Taste Tracker: IHOP does breakfast to go; celebrate the Mexican way at Fuzzy’s, Torchy’s and Miguel’s Jr.; Chili’s mixes up seasonal sips and more menu news of the week.

Taste Tracker: Carrabba’s Italian spin on comfort; hearty Mexican fare at Abuelo’s and Taco John’s; Smashburger partners with Rick Bayless; and holiday-ready sweet treats.

Taste Tracker: TGI Fridays’ seasonal cocktails; Chopt goes to Mexico and Del Taco does tamales; Smashburger and Main Event shake things up; plants, burgers, chicken and pizza continue to trend.

Mendocino Farms and Rush Bowls launch new items; chicken sandwiches keep on coming at Jollibee and Jack in the Box; Panera layers carbs on carbs; and comfort foods take on fall flavors.

Taste tracker: Panda Express has a chicken sandwich and nuggets rule at Pokemoto; guac goes Japanese at Jinya; chains celebrate cheeseburgers; queso at Einstein Bros. and more.

Taste tracker: Shake Shack partners with famous chefs for LTOs; bacon and cheddar team up at Wendy’s and Schlotzsky’s; nachos and tacos trend at El Pollo Loco, Torchy’s and Taco Cabana; Dutch Bros. and Bennigan’s tout new drinks; and sweet treats get seasonal.

Taste tracker: Shake Shack partners with restaurateur Dominique Crenn for an LTO; bacon and cheddar team up at Wendy’s and Schlotzsky’s; nachos and tacos trend at El Pollo Loco, Torchy’s and Taco Cabana; Dutch Bros. and Bennigan’s tout new drinks; and sweet treats get seasonal.

September signals a new beginning, with Labor Day weekend marking the unofficial transition from summer to fall. Operators are responding to that signal with new menu launches and revamps of favorites.

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