Autumn is a time of rituals. Some traditions are necessary, like the switch from swimsuits to sweaters because of the gradual drop in temperature (depending on where you live) and some are subconscious like the annual biking to work everyday because it’s-just-so-darn-nice outside. Some are bizarre like the Zozobra Festival in Santa Fe and some are so natural it is impossible to imagine the months September to November without them. One tradition that is quickly being inducted into the last category is the Pumpkin Spice Latte. People come out of the woodwork for that stuff. You’ll be hard pressed to find a coffee shop without it. Well, we think it’s high time to expand all of our colorful leaved horizon and give some other Autumnal drinks a chance of entering the seasonal canon. Here are some autumn flavors you may not have given a chance yet. As you’ll soon find out, Maple, Pumpkin, and Spice are the words that will sustain you through Halloween and Thanksgiving. Here are 5 unconventional ways to mix up your fall lineup.
Do you drink coffee? Do you know what illy caffé is? (pronounced EEE-LEE) If you answered yes to both questions, you are among the minority of Americans. Illy is one of the oldest espresso roasting companies in the world and widely considered the gold standard in Europe. You may not know much about Francesco Illy and his coffee business; here's 5 reasons you owe him and his company a large debt of gratitude.
Depending on where you live, you probably notice a new concept restaurant opening in your area about once a month. Most of these new restaurants find a comfortable niche location within a strip mall on highly trafficked street and fit the recently defined genre of “Fast Casual Dining.” This label refers to businesses like Chipotle, Noodle’s and Company, and Five Guys Burgers and Fries. The aforementioned restaurants have achieved great success because they have responded to a market audience that desires higher quality (often healthier) food, at a faster pace and relatively low cost. These businesses are the fastest growing segment of the restaurant industry for good reason. On the other hand, there is the long established category of restaurant known as “Fast Food” or “Quick Service Restaurants” (QSRs) that also achieve comfortable, if not dramatically lucrative, profits. The most successful of these have a strong brand identity and thrive on providing consistent, rapid, low cost dining experiences. Both styles of restaurant can readily be compared to specialty coffee and tea shops respectively, and it is important for you to have a clear concept for your business to achieve its maximum potential. Hopefully you may find that one of these models can help achieve a more unified approach to brand identity in your unique cafe. It is important to note that neither of these examples is the “right way” to run your cafe, you will want to evaluate the criteria for both and see if either concept matches your café more closely.