Breakfast’s cachet has grown exponentially in recent years. But enticing consumers to have cocktails with the morning meal … on a weekday? That’s relatively uncharted territory for chains, even among the growing number of trend-forward breakfast and lunch-only concepts. That’s except for Snooze, an A.M. Eatery, the Denver-based chain with a full roster of morning cocktails that’s boosting check averages and fueling repeat visits. Ten percent to 12% of all diners order alcohol, and a quarter of the average check comes from beverage, Birzon says. The chain even features sparkling wine on tap for a range of twists on mimosas. “We are an experiential dining establishment,” Birzon says. “The energy, the vibrancy, the time out from everyday life: That’s what sets us apart.”
When Barber opened Blue Hill at Stone Barns in 2004, the menu was inspired by the farm where the restaurant was located, in Pocantico Hills, N.Y. The farm evolved into the Stone Barns Center for Food & Agriculture, becoming not only a source of produce, dairy products, grains and other homegrown ingredients but also a nonprofit educational resource for farmers, chefs and the public.