Category: Bar & Beverage Concepts

Summer Food Feature: Part One

Summer is here. That means more & more seasonal summer food, easy summer recipes, and light, refreshing drinks to keep guests well fed, satiated, and happy. One current food trend we’re loving these days (and we’re guiding our clients to implement with ease)… house-made specialties, such as scratch sodas and hand-pulled noodles. We’ve gone straight to our expert sources (i.e. our amazing, in-the-know culinary team, including R&D Specialist Amanda Webb) to get the Summer Food 411 on what makes house-made specialties – well, so special. Top of the list: taking that extra step showcases to guests that you’re willing to… read more

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VSAG on Watch: Pisco Takes Center Stage

South of the border spirits are taking center stage as we see an influx of delicious, interesting new spirits coming from and inspired by the tastes of South America. Spirits such as Brazilian cachaca, Peruvian pisco, and Bolivian singani (all of which are in the port wine, brandy, rum families but each have their own, distinct persona), are entering the U.S. market and being paired with citrus/fruits, chilies, and herbs making for some delicious, smooth, and flavorful cocktails. All are quickly becoming favorites on the American bar scene, but we see a standout: Pisco. What is pisco? Pisco is described… read more

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Product Branding: Is it for You?

Expansion is good for business. But, as many elements come into play, from budgets and business plans to raising additional capital and fulfilling a niche in order to succeed, as with almost everything else in life… timing is everything. And only you, as operator, will know when the time is right. In order to offer clients the best restaurant consulting practices we can, we look at all dimensions. Recently, we delved into the notion of taking your brand global, offering key techniques and concepts, such as: Know who you are. Know what you are looking to achieve. Know where you want… read more

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Beverage Journal Speaks to Our Very Own Jon Arroyo

A big VSAG shout out to our very own Jon Arroyo for a great feature in Beverage Journal. As our award-winning Beverage Director, Jon knows a thing or two about bar & beverage service. And when Beverage Journal came calling to talk to him about his specialized, innovative work in creating the custom-built, fully functioning micro-batch distillery housed within client Farmers Restaurant Group’s latest Washington, D.C. outpost Farmers & Distillers, Jon was happy to speak about Founding Spirits. In keeping with the restaurant group’s commitment to farming, especially with their ongoing partnership with North Dakota Farmers Union, and their local… read more

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VSAG Client News: Farmers & Distillers Opens!

The reservation call center is busily up & running, the staff is trained and happily serving hungry guests, the booze is flowing, and yes, the doors are open. We’re thrilled to announce that our longtime client, Farmers Restaurant Group, has opened their latest venture. Located in the cool, culturally diverse Mt Vernon Square neighborhood in the heart of Washington, D.C. Farmers & Distillers is primed to be the next successful venture in this growing restaurant group. Along with sister restaurants, Founding Farmers and Farmers Fishers Bakers, Farmers & Distillers continues the brand’s farmer-owned concept, but with a twist: this restaurant… read more

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What’s Hot in Holiday Flavor Profiles?

‘Tis the season to open your doors and welcome your festive guests, who are ready to get their party on! Now’s the time. Try new, seasonal food trends, popular flavors, ingredients, and preparations. Diners are open to new beginnings and discovering flavor trends for the first time or revisiting nostalgic flavors of holidays past. Either way, position your holiday to take guest’s taste buds happily through the season and into the New Year. Our culinary team, including our in-house R&D Specialist Amanda Webb, is hard at work guiding clients to making the most of their holiday menus. So, like kids… read more

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VSAG on Watch: Client News

In our efforts as restaurant consultants to assist clients in implementing their vision for the business of operating a thriving restaurant, we’re always thrilled to celebrate their ongoing accomplishments. One such success story, Drift on 7th – a local, Washington, D.C. client we’ve guided in reworking their concept, menu, interior décor, and layout – is getting lots of local buzz lately. Recent coups include Drift being named one of DC’s 11 New Restaurants You Should Try Right Now and a great feature write up in The Washington Post touting their commitment to deliciously enticing, sustainable fish dishes (such as Maine… read more

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VSAG on Seasonal Success: Top 3 Summer Menu Trends

Introducing seasonal ingredients, flavor profiles, and trends not only keeps menus interesting, but it also allows for more creativity in the kitchen. We discovered some seasonal trends we think are worth adding to your flavor profiles this summer. Wood-fire Cooking. Nothing says summer like some great, downhome bbq. And we couldn’t be more excited that the trend of authentic, rustic, wood-fire cooking is getting fired-up (yes, we went there!) this season. What’s not to love about the slow-roasted, natural, smoky flavor? Take your wood fire game up a notch by infusing flavors such as fruit woods like apple, apricot, and… read more

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Summer’s Top Beverage Trends ’15

Some of the summer drink trends pouring onto beverage menus this season are fresh, healthy, and delicious. From creative juices flowing from fresh and yummy juice bars to refreshing twists on the timeless iced tea, we love these summer beverage trends! The Juice Bar. Can prove a risky business venture as juicing programs feature fresh fruit (thatcan turn on a dime) and costly cold press equipment, and the like. But the benefits of offering diners healthy freshness in a bottle often outweighs the risk for those willing to dedicate themselves to devising a streamlined, innovative program that sets them apart…. read more

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Making the Most of Your Restaurant Partnerships

Cultivating successful partnerships with purveyors, vendors, local businesses, and the like is a crucial element to long-term success. Not always an easy task, as the quick-paced nature of the restaurant industry and its many moving parts can alter set plans at any time. Our co-Founder, Dan Simons, is well versed in the art of forming great partnerships, as he understands and appreciates the value and dedication that goes into a successful VSAG collaboration. For example, we’ve guided our restaurant consulting client, Farmers Restaurant Group, through the ongoing process of growing lasting partnerships with bar & beverage partners, Copper Fox Distillery… read more

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