Chain Beverage Buzz

BeverageDaily.comCocktail Flavors to Cognitive Enhancement: Zenith’s Top 13 Energy Drinks Trends
Zenith International includes cocktail flavors and cognitive enhancement within a list of 13 top trends it says have driven innovation in energy drinks on the basis of post-2012 product launches. MORE>>

Ruby TuesdayRuby Tuesday to Close Up to 16 More Units
Ruby Tuesday Inc. expects to close as many as 16 more of its namesake restaurants this year as part of a turnaround that included the company shedding more than 30 units in the past year, executives said Wednesday. The closures are part of a yearlong initiative at the Maryville, Tenn.-based operator, which also owns the Lime Fresh brand. MORE>>

Kent Taylor CEO of Texas Road HouseKent Taylor Receives Highest Honor in Restaurant Industry
Kent Taylor, CEO and Chairman of the Board of Texas Roadhouse, Inc. was named Operator of the Year during the 2014 MUFSO Industry Awards Gala October 6 in Dallas. Restaurant peers select the Operator of the Year from an exclusive list of the 2014 Golden Chain Honorees, which included Taylor; Sandra Cochran, president and chief executive of Cracker Barrel Old Country Store Inc.; Greg Creed, chief executive of Taco Bell; Joseph DePinto, president and chief executive of 7-Eleven Inc. MORE>>

NRADigital Wallets: The New ‘Interface’ of Mobile Payments
Get ready for a shift in mobile payments that will rival the cash-to-card shift already in place. While doing nothing in the short term won’t hurt your operation, indifference over the long haul could carry some hazards, given the latest advances that are sure to change the technological landscape. Those changes include Apple Pay, Apple’s new digital wallet, which launched with the new iPhone 6. MORE>>

Red BUllRed Bull to Raise Prices by 5 Percent
In a brief and rather unusual statement, Red Bull North America announced on Friday that it would be increasing prices of its products by approximately 5 percent. The pricing change will impact beverages that the company sells to its distributor partners and is expected to result in higher prices for consumers. Red Bull made the decision having held relatively steady on the price of its energy drinks since their debut in 1997, “despite rising costs associated with raw materials, production and transportation,” the company noted. MORE>>

HeinenkenNew Heineken USA Ad Recommends Serving Cider Over Ice
Strongbow Hard Apple Cider, a brand of Heineken USA, White Plains, N.Y., launched a new marketing campaign, “Cider at its Bestest.” The new, national campaign explains to consumers that Strongbow is best served over ice and includes the brand’s first U.S. TV spot, “Slow Motion Horse.” “We use quality ingredients, and, of course, we would like people to enjoy Strongbow in the best way possible: poured over ice,” said Alejandra de Obeso, brand director of portfolio brands at Heineken USA, in a statement. MORE>>

Bottled WaterBottled Water Consumption Rises
Research conducted by the Natural Marketing Institute (NMI), Harleysville, Pa., shows that Americans’ consumption of water has increased by more than 68 million 8-ounce servings in less than a year. The study evaluated 60,000 U.S. adults and their average daily intake of unflavored water — including bottled, tap and filtered water — between the fourth quarter of 2013 and the second quarter of 2014. MORE>>

Bloody MaryBloody Mary: 80 Years of Brightening Brunch
Wake up and smell the tomato juice: The Bloody Mary turns 80 this year. Fernand Petiot, a bartender at the St. Regis New York’s King Cole Bar, gets credit for debuting the now-classic cocktail in 1934. And over the weekend, St. Regis Hotels & Resorts began hosting a series of Bloody Mary brunches (featuring 80 variations on St. Regis’ signature recipe) at its properties around the world. MORE>>

Food Business NewsStudy: Restaurants Reducing Calories
Ahead of menu labeling requirements, top restaurant chains have reduced calories in new items, according to research from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore. The study, published in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine, examined more than 19,000 menu items at 66 of the 100 largest U.S. restaurant chains for 2012 and 2013. MORE>>

Bar LouieBar Louie Opening New Location In Houston with Free Food
Bar Louie announced today the opening of their newest location in Houston, TX.  When Bar Louie opens its doors on October 15th, it will be the second Houston location for the Addison, TX-based brand. Bar Louie Willowbrook is conveniently located in the Willowbrook Mall next to Nordstrom Rack. To celebrate their grand opening, Bar Louie will be hosting a 2-day blowout bash October 16th and 17th.  Every guest will receive their first Appetizer or Flatbread FREE just for stopping by at any point during the two-day span. MORE>>