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Fast Food

Popeyes’ New Nuggets Will Soon Be Available Nationwide

Photo courtesy of Popeyes

Popeyes already has some serious fried chicken cred under its belt as the reigning champ of the Fried Chicken Sandwich “wars” on top of some seriously good crispy poultry.

They’re looking to bolster their reputation as fast food’s top fried chicken by doing the classic nugget better than everyone else, and that iteration is getting served up nationwide soon.

Photo courtesy of Popeyes

Foodbeast first reported on the existence of these new nuggets in February 2021, and on July 27th, they will be available at all Popeyes locations nationwide. During tests, these chicken bites got some serious high marks on Twitter, akin to what drove the popularity behind Popeyes’ signature chicken sandwich.

In restaurants, you’ll be able to order between 4 and 36 pieces of the new nuggets, which use the same recipe as the chicken in the Popeyes sandwich. Folks that order using the Popeyes app can go even bigger and get 4 dozen nuggets at once.

Time will have to tell if Popeyes can strike lightning twice with these nuggets, but so far, the early signs are pretty promising.

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Packaged Food Sweets

Kraft Mac & Cheese Ice Cream Pints Are Now Real

Photo courtesy of Kraft

The first thing that comes to mind when you hear that Kraft Mac & Cheese has an ice cream is that it’s a gimmick, or an April Fool’s prank of some sort.

We’re in July, however, and these pints of cheesy ice cream are no joke. It’s a serious collab between the mac and cheese magnate and Van Leeuwen, a premier Brookyln-based ice cream maker who’s churning out a limited batch for $12 a pint.

Van Leeuwen incorporated all of the flavor of Kraft mac into their ice cream base, according to a press release. Not sure if that means they just whisked the cheese powder from the boxes in, but that’s not a bad idea, especially with how good salty and sweet work together.

Cheese ice creams aren’t also anything extremely groundbreaking. Purveyors like Salt and Straw have made their livelihood off incorporating tangy goat cheeses into ice cream, and there’s a variety of ice cream brands that mix cheddar into their pints. The precedent is there, but this is a pretty big brand like Kraft making a splash in the cheesy ice cream pool.

For those interested in acquiring a pint or two, they’ll be sold on the Van Leeuwen’s website starting at 11 am ET on July 14th. You can also grab a scoop at Van Leeuwen stores in LA, Houston, and NYC while supplies last. A Kraft Ice Cream truck will also be outside of New York City’s Union Square from 11 am – 6 pm on the 14th, slinging out free samples of the mac and cheese ice cream.

Categories
Deals Entrepreneurship Food Waste Restaurants Sustainability Technology

Groundbreaking App Lets You Rescue $15+ Worth Of Food For Just 6 Bucks

Photo: Les Kaner // Too Good To Go

Food waste has persisted as a global problem that many companies are trying to find solutions for. Upcycled foods and waste reduction are two industries that have formed to combat excess food waste, but 1.4 billion tons still gets tossed every year, the majority of which is at home or at restaurants.

On the restaurant end, there’s a large network of connected local restaurants called Too Good To Go that’s striving to make a massive impact on rescuing food that would otherwise go to waste.

Photo courtesy of Too Good To Go

Consumers can tap into this network via the Too Good To Go app, which allows them to reserve “Surprise Bags” from spots around them that are in the system for $5-$6. What you get in return is approximately $15 worth of food that the restaurant would have otherwise thrown out.

Overall, the restaurant wins by making a little extra money off of food they would’ve lost, you get to score on a massive discount for some food, and Too Good To Go profits slightly off of the cost of the bag. Pretty much, everybody benefits, including the planet, as food waste is cut and helps lower waste and resulting greenhouse gas emissions.

It’s not just restaurants that you can get food from, however, as Too Good To Go partners with restaurants, bakeries, supermarkets, and hotels. Currently, they’re linked with 75,000 different spots worldwide.

Photo courtesy of Too Good To Go

Too Good To Go, founded in 2016, is currently in the midst of a massive push to expand globally. They’ve recently made a debut in San Francisco, and can also be seen in New York City, Chicago, Austin, and other metropolises worldwide.

It’s one of the biggest ways to fight against food waste, and it pretty much works the same for a customer as a food delivery app would. Sure, there’s a lot more we can do at home to combat food waste too, but this is a pretty convenient way to get started.

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Restaurants Video

This Island Garlic Shrimp Pizza Is A Tantalizing Tribute To Summer

Photo: Peter Pham // Foodbeast

We all know that garlic and seafood are a perfect match for each other, especially for some summertime seafood feasts. Putting the two together on a pizza is a fresh stroke of genius.

Rose City Pizza in Rosemead, California, has managed to pair the zesty garlic shrimp with the cheesy, savory flavors of pizza without one overpowering the other. The result is one of the freshest-tasting pies you can sink your teeth into.

Photo: Peter Pham // Foodbeast

The Island Garlic Shrimp Pizza uses a garlic butter sauce base with more fresh garlic, mozzarella, and plenty of shrimps on top. It gets a sprinkle of Cajun seasoning and heads to the oven before getting drizzled in remoulade sauce and fresh cilantro. Slices of fresh lemon and edible flowers garnish the top, providing acidity, color, and extra flavor all at once.

Right now, the Island Garlic Shrimp Pizza is a weekend-only special, and one that the squad will absolutely love during the hot summer months.

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Restaurants Video

Three Romanian Takes On Deli Sandwiches You HAVE To Try

There is arguably no better spot to get a fresh sandwich from than a butcher shop. When they’re making their own meats and cuts and serving them up, you know you’re going to be biting into something special.

At Goodies in the Pantry in Orange, California, owner Claudiu Giorgioni ensures that every order that comes from his kitchen is an experience unlike anything you’ve tried before. A butcher from Romania, Giorgioni finds ways to incorporate some unique flavors and tastes into even the most basic of sandwiches.

Foodbeast Marc Kharrat went to try the Goodies lineup, and was most impressed by three sandwiches: the pork belly sandwich, a smoked brisket sandwich (all of the cuts are smoked in house), and a Romanian spin on shawarma unlike anything he’s tasted.

Of course, this is a butcher shop with top quality meat, so get one of these with a steak on the side (Giorgioni does smoke tomahawks then grills them to finish them off) and you’re in for a true feast.

To learn more about each of the sandwiches and Goodies in the Pantry, check out the full video up top.

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Fast Food Restaurants

Subway Is Starting Its Largest Menu Revamp In The Chain’s History

Photo courtesy of Subway

After years mired in multiple controversies, Subway is finally giving its entire brand and menu a new facelift.

Starting on July 13th, locations nationwide will be undergoing a “Eat Fresh Refresh” that revamps a number of sandwiches, ingredients, and adds new items to the chain’s menu.

Items with past scandals that are getting upgraded include the chain’s bread, with two new loaves available to pile cold cuts and veggies into (Artisan Italian and Hearty Multigrain). There’s also a ton of new topping options, including smashed avocado and fresh mozzarella, and improvements to meat options like bacon, steak, rotisserie chicken, roast beef, and more.

Photo courtesy of Subway

Subway is also bringing back their Rotisserie Chicken and Roast Beef subs as part of the refresh. Four new sandwiches also join their arsenal: Turkey Cali Fresh, Steak Cali Fresh, Subway Club, and All-American Club.

As part of the upgrade, some Subway restaurants are also getting remodels or redesigns, and technology upgrades like Subway delivery are also getting added.

The biggest change Subway isn’t making? They’re sticking to their guns on their tuna, despite lawsuits and news reports that DNA tests on the fish were inconclusive (albeit, how those tests were conducted is a concern all on its own).

To make all of these changes happen, 10,000 or more Subway locations will close starting at 6 pm on July 12th so the makeovers can take place. On July 13th, a new and improved Subway, hoping to stand out and look fresher than its past model, will be ready for the public to try for the first time.

It’s a bold and ambitious attempt to get people back into Subway stores. We’ll just have to see whether its a success and the new ingredients prove to deliver when it comes to flavor.

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Restaurants

Philly Cheesesteak Meets Gyro At This California Greek Restaurant

It’s no hidden secret that Philadelphia is one of the epicenters of the Greek-American community in the United States. With hundreds of thousands in the community that have immigrated since the early 1800s, they’ve left their mark on the city as much as the city has left its mark on their community.

As a result, it would make sense to find folks combining together iconic Greek dishes, like gyros, and iconic Philly dishes, like cheesesteaks. We just wouldn’t expect to find that on the other side of the country north of Los Angeles.

Venture out to Mythpoint Bistro in Westlake Village, however, and you’ll find a lineup of unique gyros that includes the “Philly-Style.” We spotted this enticing option online, and found after ordering that the filling is really a blend of what makes both sandwiches great.

You get the warm, crusty pita bread and savory, well spiced beef and lamb from the gyro meat. That all gets offset with the sweetness of caramelized onions and peppers, the tang of provolone (Mythpoint opted for that cheese over Whiz), and freshness from lettuce and tomato. It’s a combination that sounds bizarre on paper, but balances both dishes out to give you a refreshing twist on both sandwiches that elevates each to a new level.

Mythpoint is apparently known for both cheesesteaks and gyros, so those looking for both sides of Philly comfort (or the two merged together) can stop by this restaurant, tucked away in a strip mall, for some grub that’s as tasty as it is unprecedented.

We’ll definitely be heading back for some of the other unique creations (like a Spicy Gyro or Garlic Butter Gyro), as well as slices of Apple Pie Baklava (best described as a Greek take on apple strudel) for the road.

Categories
Fast Food Restaurants

The Biggest Restaurant Chain Winners And Losers Of The Pandemic

Photo: Elliot Cowand Jr // Shutterstock

The COVID-19 pandemic has left much of the restaurant industry devastated. Numerous closures and capacity restrictions left many restaurants struggling, and an alarming amount closed their doors permanently.

Chain restaurants weren’t free from this despite their size, and many took massive hits as well. However, some were able to grow drastically despite the pandemic and are poised to continue to spread and succeed as vaccinations continue.

Nation’s Restaurant News looked at the biggest restaurant chains over the past year and analyzed how much sales each brought in during 2020. Based on the change compared to 2019, they were able to see which chains had the largest percent increases and decreases over the last year.

It should come as no surprise that the leader in the fast food chicken wars, Popeyes, has done really well over the past year. The chain brought in $4.58 billion in sales, netting a whopping 20% increase in money brought in.

The only chain that did better on the list? Wingstop, who posted a 21% increase in sales and netted $1.61 billion. Other spots that did well include the big pizza empires of Domino’s (up 11% to $7.35 billion) and Papa John’s ($3.48 billion, 19% increase).

Photo: Rob Crandall // Shutterstock

As for the chains that got hit hardest, many of them were sit-down restaurants that couldn’t recoup numbers through take out and delivery the ways others could.

These include The Cheesecake Factory, who fell over 28% to $1.53 billion in sales, and IHOP, who lost a quarter of their sales compared to the last year and brought in $2.51 billion.

The biggest loser, however, was Applebee’s, who fell a staggering 31% in sales to $2.78 billion. They definitely still made a lot of money, but losing that much in the long run is going to seriously hurt.

With restaurants starting to reopen, many of the largest losers will likely be trying to recoup lost sales, while the biggest winners could use their revenue to trial new products, go heavy on marketing, or even just grow and expand their empires. They’re coming out of the near end of this pandemic unscathed (or better than before), and will be able to take advantage as a result.