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The Cheesecake Factory Just Opened A Fast-Casual Asian Restaurant Concept

The Cheesecake Factory just opened a new restaurant, but it’s not one of their establishments with a Bible-sized menu of massive portions at reasonable prices. Instead, they’ve launched a fast casual, pan-Asian concept that could be the next chain the restaurant group develops.

Photo courtesy of The Social Monk

Called The Social Monk, the inaugural location just opened for business in Thousand Oaks, California. The restaurant has been in development for two years, according to Nation’s Restaurant News, and comes with some significant culinary firepower. Helming the culinary team is award-winning chef, Mohan Ismail, a Singaporean native that specializes in Southeast Asian fare. His influence can be found all over the menu, which is all about the variety of rice and noodle bowls available.

Apart from some one-off items like an Asian fried chicken sandwich, The Social Monk’s lineup is all about these starches. They’re pretty well priced, with a basic noodle or rice bowl starting at $8.95. Built with base ingredients like turmeric daikon, fried eggs, and a chive relish, you get your choice of meat on top, including chicken satay, short rib, or even shrimp. There’s also more premium options, like a Dan Dan Noodles or Shaking Beef over rice, that you can choose instead.

Overall, the menu and vibe of the place definitely feels like a “Cheesecake Factory of Asian restaurants.” It’s a grouping together of a bunch of different items folks in the US are more familiar with, and sticking them all under one roof. That does kind of make it like a counter-service version of P.F. Chang’s, which has proven to be successful so far.

For now, it seems that just the one location of The Social Monk will be open. We’ll have to see whether it goes the way of Chipotle’s test concepts and falls flat, or can one day flourish into its own successful chain.

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QDOBA Brings The Heat With Fire-Roasted Shrimp This Summer

If there is a food that just screams summer, it is shrimp.

Thanks to QDOBA Mexican Eats, it’s time to get your shrimp on this summer with three new dishes from QDOBA. 

First in the new line-up: Surf and Turf Burrito Bowls loaded with juicy, grilled steak, cilantro lime rice, freshly made chimichurri sauce, and black beans, all topped off with Fire-Roasted Shrimp.

Also available for some fun this summer: Tropical Shrimp Tacos topped with sweet pineapple pico, creamy guacamole, shredded lettuce, cotija cheese, and wrapped in a corn tortilla. They are perfect for sharing on for those long summer nights.

QDOBA isn’t stopping there, however. For those of us paying extra attention to our beach bods, stay cool with their new Fire-Roasted Shrimp Salad topped with pineapple pico, lettuce and guacamole in a crispy fried tortilla shell, and drizzled with cilantro lime dressing, for a sweet and tangy taste that’s harder to pass up than a day at the beach.

If that still is not enough for you, you can add QDOBA’s Fire-Roasted Shrimp to any Qdoba entrée. But all you shrimp lovers better hurry, because just like summer, these new shrimp dishes are here for a limited time.

Created in partnership with QDOBA Mexican Eats

#foodbeast Brand Cravings Culture Fast Food FOODBEAST Hit-Or-Miss News Now Trending Restaurants SPONSORED Video What's New

Watch This Restaurant Turn Fried Chicken & Waffles Into A Cubano Sandwich

It’s easy to see why the Cubano sandwich trend has began to proliferate, branching out from its roots on the East Coast. If you think about it, the Cubano is probably one of the simplest sandwiches ever made, yet its simplicity is sparking culinary intrigue across the country —  and everyone is beginning to notice something special about the Cubano.

Having originated in Florida, the Cubano is traditionally made with roasted pork, ham, pickles, Swiss cheese, yellow mustard and lightly toasted on a panini grill. Its adaptations can certainly vary when it comes to specific ingredients, but all share the same no-frills approach to making an unforgettable and deliciously savory, melt-in-your-mouth creation.

This April, Bruxie, the fried chicken and waffle sandwich chain, will also be sharing their own Cubano concept.

Photos by Pete Pham

Behold: the Bruxie Fried Chicken & Waffle Cubano Sandwich.

Made with shaved ham, Bruxie’s house-made honey-mustard, thinly sliced pickles, and of course their crispy, golden brown fried chicken, all served between two savory waffle buns, this is something that might actually be better than Spring Break.

If you’re looking to experience the traditional taste of the Cubano with a twist from Bruxie Gourmet Waffle Sandwiches, you’d better hurry. Like Spring Break, Bruxie’s Cubano Sandwich won’t be here forever (even though we all wish it would).

The Bruxie Cubano sandwich will be available from April 5 – 25.

Created in partnership with Bruxie


Hooters Is Opening A New Restaurant With Fully-Clothed Servers


Aside from their chicken wings, Hooters is probably best known for their female servers dressed in tank tops and shorts. With the New Year upon us, the company is trying something new in the form of a brand-new fast-casual wing restaurant featuring…fully clothed workers.

According to the Tampa Bay Times, Hooters Management Corp. will be opening a new spot outside of Chicago called Hoots, A Hooters Joint. The upcoming restaurant will feature a one-page abbreviated menu from Hooters’ full-service restaurants.

It’s essentially an express Hooters.

According to a statement from Spokesperson Lizz Harmon, the concept will feature both male and female servers who will not be wearing the parent restaurant’s revealing outfits. That’s cool. We’re only gonna be there for the wings, anyways.

Hoots is slated to open sometime in mid-February in Cicero, Ill.

Fast Food News Restaurants

Chipotle Says They Are Constantly Running Out Of Food


Have you ever been waiting in a Chipotle line, stomach roaring and ready to chow down on a beefy burrito, only to find that the restaurant has run out of steak for the day? Well, this is because Chipotle is facing a food shortage.

Chipotle’s chief marketing officer, Mark Crumpacker, said that running out of food tends to happen pretty frequently at Chipotle restaurant locations. This means, specifically, that restaurants are miscalculating demands and not producing enough food (meats, guac, etc), leaving customers wanting occasionally.

NRN reports that food shortages are customers’ second largest complaint after the quick service chain’s not-so-quick lines.

In other recent news, one of Chipotle’s co-CEOS, Monty Moran, had recently stepped down from his position. Founder Steve Ells, the main face of the brand, will become the sole CEO of Chipotle. Not sure yet if losing a CEO will affect Chipotle for the better, or for worse. However, the company did say they will be working on solving the food shortage issue through careful training.

Gotta make sure customers are fed first if Chipotle wants to increase sales.

Deals Fast Food Restaurants

Chipotle Will Give You A Free Burrito For Playing A Simple Matching Game


Last year, Chipotle gave away some free guacamole and chips with their Guac Hunter promotion. Customers would play a quick avocado-themed memory game and, if successful, would earn themselves a free snack from the fast casual chain.

This year, they’re bringing back a similar offer with a Buy One Get One promotion based off of their recent animated short film A Love Story.

Players have to match up real Chipotle ingredients with ones that the quick service restaurant deem “imposters.” These included added flavor, or added color. The point is to underline Chipotle’s commitment to fresh ingredients.


Hey, if it gets us a free burrito.

You can play the game here and get yourself a free burrito after the purchase of a regular burrito.

The fast food chain will also hold a Halloween promotion where you get $3 burritos, bowls, tacos, or salad if you decide to dress up in a costume.


Hit-Or-Miss Restaurants

These Are The Best Restaurant Chain Social Media Accounts That You Should Be Following

Let’s face it, we’re an ADD society with control issues. Nowadays it takes more than a jingle to keep our interest. We require visual stimulation, and things that’ll do more than have us ‘Like’ them. These creative brands know how to make fun of themselves, collaborate, and put on a persona beyond “happy meal” status. If you’re not following them by now, then you’re missing out.


1. Del Taco on Vine

Props to the only fast food joint utilizing Vine. It’s quick, animated, and about the food. They know society has a short attention span, and capitalize on that. The Del Scorcho crew plays to a younger set, and it fits into our busy lives when we’re preoccupied with other accounts to obsess over.


2. KFC on Twitter

Embracing pop culture, KFC tweets to dudes like Austin Mahone. The Colonel himself even “drives” cross-country, en route to Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade, stopping at scenic destinations in need of drumsticks. They’re even open-minded enough to celebrate Hanukkah — menorah and all.


3. Burger King on Tumblr


Photo: Burger King

The King pleasantly surprised us with their Tumbling wit. Slightly obsessed over chicken fries, it’s an entertaining mix of animated GIFs, straightforward photography, and funny dialogue. Don’t knock it ‘til you check them out.


4. Starbucks on Twitter

Damn, hipster Starbucks knows what’s up. Experts at changing up their Twitter feed, they make it pretty, but not too pretty. You kill us softly, Starbucks. Now go make our Venti Frap.


5. Sonic Drive-In on Instagram

Our #SquareShakes squad on point at #coachellavalley 👌

A photo posted by SONIC Drive-In (@sonicdrivein) on

Taking the idea of playing with your food quite literally, Sonic’s food styling is right up there with adult coloring books. It probably helps to have rainbow hues of slushies and tasty candy bits at your disposal.


6. Denny’s on Twitter

Denny’s is firing on all social media cylinders, but their Twitter feed took the syrupy pancake. It’s genius! Random thoughts. Current ideas. Funny, but doesn’t cross over into NSFW territory. The unexpected originality and consistency makes for a real Grand Slam.


7. Shake Shack on Pinterest


Surprised? With 20 stocked boards referencing style, places, and pets they love, you almost forget it’s a brand page and not an East Coast millennial you want to be internet friends with. The Shack’s Pinterest account is an eclectic meeting of the minds where there’s something for everyone, with photos ranging from silly to extremely stylized. Then again, some might consider Shake Shack’s Pinterest to be sensory overload. The fact that they serve beer helps.


8. Applebee’s on Instagram

How to do all of the work and none of the work at the same time: get your followers to be #Fantographers. Applebee’s Instagram account is almost completely driven by their fan base. Diners submit their snaps, and the powers that be decide which ones are featured. It results in bragging rights for customers, and an updated social media account for one evil genius, fast casual restaurant.

Cravings News Restaurants What's New

There’s A Restaurant Devoted ENTIRELY To Fair Foods And It’s Inside A Walmart


Imagine if you didn’t have to wait for the fair every year; that there was a single place open 365 days that served nothing but fair foods. According to Dallas Morning News, that dream just came true. A Walmart in Plano, TX, will open the first-ever State Fair menu restaurant inside the store.

Set to open on September 20th, State Fair Treats will be the first in a region-wide expansion. The restaurant will be run by Isaac Rousso, an all-star veteran of the State Fair of Texas. State Fair Treats will feature an ambitious 45-item menu featuring classics you can only find at the annual event.

While the menu remains pretty secret, we can expect to see a fair amount of deep-fried foods.

Walmart is already known for housing fast-food chains like McDonald’s or Subway. Though they do sell state fair-like items like deep-fried Twinkies and Donut Cheeseburgers in their frozen food aisles, the new restaurant will be a sizable addition to the usual assortment of sit-in dining choices.