Dan Simons Speaks to the Mission and Success of VSAG Client, Founding Farmers

A great big shout out to our Principal, Dan Simons, on getting out in front of the Farmers Restaurant Group brand, Founding Farmers. His passion and dedication to increasing demand for family-farmed products and educating on the message of family farming vs. corporate farms-industries, is a common thread running through the farmer-owned, Founding Farmers brand. As concept developer and owner, Dan’s commitment to the brand is on display within two significant media pieces. In the recent Huffington Post blog feature, A New Deal for Farmers – How Founding Farmers is Changing the Game, Dan speaks to his belief that “Farmers… read more

Successful Engagement for a Bright Future

Our business development focus is set on growth within all arenas. For us, one constant that always aligns within our growth structure? The next generation of restaurant operators, and our ongoing efforts to pass the baton – by engaging, inspiring, and supporting them. If encouraging and educating students already interested in a culinary career also appeals to you, here are some great scholarship and outreach opportunities to motivate you. Inspired by the amazing students and hospitality program at Washington, D.C.’s The George Washington University, in 2011 we developed the Scholarship for Sustainable Hospitality. Awarded to GW students pursuing a culinary… read more

VSAG Principal Feature: Bringing a Restaurant to Life 

Always willing to take part in a conversation focused on sharing ideas, building relationships, and therefore bettering our business, Principal Dan Simons (*photo: right) was happy to participate in a recent industry trends panel. The Focus: DC Retail & Restaurant Industry. Hosted by: Bisnow, a leading international commercial real estate team focused on local-market networking, reaching their millions of savvy retail industry fans through their annual conferences, e-newsletters, and outreach. Topics Covered: Consumer demand and trends facing the restaurant & hospitality industry, including: the art of creating a successful concept, finance and development strategies, design and construction best practices, and effective… read more

What are the Emerging Social Media Trends in the Restaurant Industry?

As restaurant operators and owners, we love exploring and leveraging technology to best guide our clients. We recently revealed our Top 5 Restaurant Apps & Platforms You Need to Bookmark Now, such as Pulse, GrubHub, and SinglePlatform. Now, we’re checking out the latest in social media.  Social media savvy is crucial for success in today’s marketplace. For example, looking to connect with specific target audiences? Facebook Ads is a great tool. Want concise, immediate, wide reaching promotion? Twitter is for you. Aiming to capitalize on social media’s power to network, capture new hires, and garner industry contacts? Check out Linkedin…. read more

Culinary School vs. On The Job Training & Development

As we watch higher education rates within the culinary industry soar, we see eager, passionate young people yearning for a culinary career that may be prohibitive due to the costs of higher education. This important topic got our team thinking about – and debating – the notion of Culinary School vs. On The Job Training & Development. Is one path better than the other? The short answer is no. We believe that education is always a positive. But, where it takes place plays a big role in this debate: classroom vs. on the job training? To add some food for… read more

Farming In America: Our Present. Our Future.

As restaurant consultants, we work closely with trusted purveyors, sources, and third parties to run our business and help our clients achieve their goals. Through our trusted sources, we’ve gotten familiar with, and passionate about, farming in America. As we observed the industry grow, we got in on the ground floor as the farming community moved into Main Street, USA. From organic farms and farmers markets to co-ops and farmer-owned restaurant concepts, sustainable harvests have become a mainstay for us. Our focus on Farming in America: Present & Future is three-fold. Here’s a look at what we see from our… read more

Summer Food Feature: Part Two

This month’s Summer Food Feature is dedicated to watermelon. That infinitely delicious, sweet slice of seasonal goodness! For all things watermelon, we did some research and found some great info on this seemingly perfect summer food. Alas, with more than 300 varieties of watermelon harvested in the U. S and South America, the growing season extends year-round, but traditionally the summer sees the most demand. Some other fun facts: The first recorded watermelon harvest? Egypt about 5,000 years ago (harvests have even been found depicted in hieroglyphics on ancient Egyptian structures) By weight, watermelon is the most-consumed melon in the… read more

Guest Appreciation = Great Business

Showing guests love for their loyalty equals great business. And the good news that aligns with that sentiment? If they’re repeat customers, you’re obviously doing something right! Kudos to you and your team! Keeping that connection on your radar is vital to your business as these are the guests who will come back again and again, refer diners, host events in your space – and ultimately help keep you afloat. Precisely why we advise our restaurant clients to show devoted guests love and appreciate for their loyal patronage. One such program our client, Farmers Restaurant Group (FRG) has put into… read more

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

Summer Food Feature: Part One

For our inaugural Summer Food Feature, we’re inspired by our recent discovery that July is National Picnic Month. Yup, who knew? As a company that believes in American farming communities, tradition, and family, we love the idea of tying National Picnic Month back to restaurant and hospitality-centric concept ideas and related menus. Creating specialized July picnic-food-centric offerings for your patio or any outdoor space – or if you don’t have an outdoor area, developing your To Go services so guests can take their meal to their own backyard or local park – is a great way to usher in a… read more