The Daily Rail: What the Mario Batali Departure Says About the Restaurant Industry

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Amy Schumer’s Beignet Run

There are few places better to crush that beignet craving than Café Du Monde, as comedian Amy Schumer showed us on social recently. She posted video on her IG of her killing a bag of tasty donuts, all while her face is covered in white powder (no idea if she came pre-powdered or not). Anyways, we thank Amy for showing us the true way to enjoy a beignet.

Best Countries for Women Workers

Iceland was named the best developed country for female workers with an index score of 79.1. Sweden came second with 76.1 while New Zealand rounded off the top three with 73.6. Nordic countries took five of the top-10 places while the world's largest English-speaking economies have some catching up to do. Canada came 11th while the UK ranked 13th. There's a considerable gap back to the United States which only managed a score of 61.1, putting it all the way down in 23rd position.

Infographic: The Best Countries For Female Workers | Statista You will find more infographics at Statista

What Your Politics Say About Your Booze

Love Michelob Ultra or Keystone Light? You’re probably voted Republican (also, do you have actual taste buds?). If you, for some reason, love Natty Light, you’re probably a centrist Democrat who didn’t vote. Zingers? Sure. But also the results of research by Will Feltus, a self-described “Republican media researcher” and senior VP at political ad-buying firm National Media Research, Planning and Placement. He looked at two years of market research to see how American drinking preferences differ by political party and voter turnout.


Why it matters to you: What does the response from Mario Batali’s company to sexual harassment concerns say about our industry as a whole? 

So, Mario Batali finally divested himself from B&B Hospitality. If you don’t remember, the celebrity chef was accused of groping staff and fans alike as well as creating a terribly hostile work environment. Batali stepped down from direct management of the organization he founded in April of 2018, but he continued to profit from it until just this week. In an article on Eater describing the circumstances surrounding Batali, they outline some other issues that existed internally at B&B Hospitality. Specifically, Joe Bastianich (the other B in B&B) has also been accused of facilitating a threatening environment and enabling Batali’s repugnant behavior. This is the real underbelly of the sexual harassment crisis in our industry. No matter how many men are outed via #MeToo, there always seems to be a backstop of new harassers waiting for their turn.

Yes, this is a cynical opinion and wholly my own. You might think me less cynical when you read the responses they gave to Eater when asked for specifics on their settlement with Batali. While they barely answered any questions about the financials surrounding Batali’s exit, they did comment on their efforts to combat sexual harassment. There is one quote that is particularly irksome.  B&B, when asked about their policies, said, “We have had systematic policies and training about sexual harassment for over 10 years, including a detailed procedure for employees to report complaints to senior management.”

Really and how can that be given that Batali was the subject of myriad accusations and eventually forced out of his own organization? It’s exactly why our industry will remain a hot bed of sexual harassment, assault, and discrimination. When you can look straight into your staff’s faces and claim you have been sensitive for 10 years with no real evidence to that fact, you just look a fool.

[Source: Eater]


Why it matters to you: Pizza sure has changed in the last 30 years. 

Once upon a time, I fantasized about making my career in the pizza biz. “Flour and water,” they said, “is the only perfect recipe for profit in the restaurant industry.” That was early in my career, when I didn’t know the realities of restaurant operations quite as well as today. However, the fact remains that pizza is by far one of the most profitable menu items ever to reside on your menus. If you aren’t currently selling pizza, the most important question you should ask is WHY? It remains America’s favorite food and, by the way, it’s not like the old days where pizza was fairly standard wherever is resided.

Pizza has evolved, starting with Spago in the ‘80s. Wolfgang Puck was considered a genius because he was serving cool pizza expressions at his most famous outlet in California. Today, when you consider the shear variety of pizza styles and flavoring, you just can’t go wrong. Just consider the evolution in crust preparation. In the last 30 years, consumer have choices like wheat, gluten free, use of artisanal flours or stuffed with cheese.

If you aren’t a true pizza restaurant, you can also grill your pizza in seconds and buy high quality fresh frozen dough that is simple to create and cook. It’s profitable and crazy popular. So, it might be time to have some fun and at least try pizza as a special or limited time offer. You might just realize the power of flour & water yourself.

[Source: Restaurant Business Online]