FINE DINING: With elevated experiences in each category, these
Think lineage of meat, the highest quality Kobe or
venues become the connection point for weekend rituals. It is
not about sustenance, but experience. So, where does that
leave fine dining? Since material choices and design details
are already being used in casual-dining settings, the easy
answer is to amp up the finish schedule with the highest
quality and most unique finds. But the real difference
will come from the menu strategy and elevation of the
Waygu, boars from the hills in Spain that are fed only
acorns or mushrooms, and other edibles foraged from local
forests. The fusion of worldly flavors with modern expression will delight patrons. These are the definable moments
that cannot be duplicated easily and form the stories that
carry on the legacy of these dining establishments. The culinary becomes the design, and the attention to detail in the
environment is an expectation of being in the category. New
concepts will continue to emerge, pushing the boundaries of
Experimenting with no reservations
Brands must evolve to stay relevant. Incubator concepts
are now flourishing as the new breed of food retailers.
They take the ordinary, the simple, and give it a twist:
waffles and chicken, Vietnamese bánh mì sandwiches, or
Neapolitan-style pizza made to order in 90 seconds. Estab-
lished players are taking note of the innovation, both in food
strategy and design. Consumers are loving the variety of
flavors and are eating it up.
Eric Boulden, LEED Green Associate, is president and
principal of Jump Branding & Design.
Among the new breed of retailers is this incubator concept focusing
on one menu direction in a small space: Bang Bang Burrito in Oshawa, Ont.,
Canada. Built for less than $225,000 with equipment, it was designed by
Jump Branding & Design.
LEFT and ABOVE: Open kitchens are migrating from casual restaurants to QSR. Communications
that blend into the décor help create an “Instagrammable” vibe at this one designed by Jump
Branding & Design. Opened a few months ago on a Toronto college campus, this Basil Box
sells 170 meals an hour during peak times.
P h oto: iStock.com/fyfoor