Fast Casual Nation Podcast

Fast Casual Nation Podcast

Follow the longest-running podcast in the Fast Casual sector as it continues to be the darling of the food industry and is destined to redefine what restaurants and food can be for the consumer of the future.


April 4, 2024 34 mins

Welcome to Surcheros' Story

We Dive into Tex-Mex Evolution In this inspiring episode of Fast Casual Nation, I had the pleasure of sitting down with Luke Christian, the visionary founder and CEO of Surcheros. Our conversation unfolded the remarkable journey of Surcheros from its humble beginnings to becoming a cornerstone of the fast-casual Tex-Mex industry.

Rooted in Resilience: The Birth of SurcherosLuke Christian's Transformational...
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    In this episode of Fast Casual Nation, Paul Barron dives into Pincho's incredible journey. This South Florida restaurant brand spearheaded the remarkable resurgence of consumer sentiment in the fast casual dining sector in 2023. Join us as we sit down with Pincho's CEO, Otto Othman, to unravel the secrets behind their success and explore the pivotal role of hospitality and order accuracy in shaping customer sentiment.

    Podcast Rundow...
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    The Power of Micro-Influencer Marketing: Benefits and Predictions
    In today's Fast Casual Nation Podcast, we talk with Nekter Juice Bar and their innovative strategies around next gen marketing. Staying ahead of the curve is essential. One strategy that has been gaining traction, especially in Technology-forward media and related industries, is micro-influencer marketing. This approach leverages individuals with smaller but highly en...
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    In this deep-dive conversation on Fast Casual Nation, I speak with Bennett Maxwell, the visionary founder of Dirty Dough Cookies, and discuss his groundbreaking strategies that are transforming the franchising world.

    A Sweet Journey from Solar to Cookies
    First off, who is Bennett Maxwell? He's a multifaceted entrepreneur, not your average cookie-cutter businessman. Starting from real estate in Utah to co-founding a renewable energy f...
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    November 10, 2023 16 mins
    Fast-casual dining has become a staple of the modern dining experience, offering a perfect blend of convenience and quality. As the food industry continues to evolve, certain cities are emerging as hotspots for fast casual brands. Covering this sector since 1996 has given me a unique insight to emerging and rebirth markets - today will explore five cities that stand out as ideal locations for fast casual restaurants: We'll delve in...
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    Welcome to another insightful episode of Fast Casual Nation Podcast, where we uncover the latest and greatest in the fast-casual sector of the food industry. Today, we're diving into a story of innovation, health, and the entrepreneurial spirit with Alessandro Biggi, founder of Avo.The Genesis of Avo – A Health-Focused Culinary Delight

    In our conversation, Alessandro shares the fascinating evolution of Avo. Starting as the first avo...
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    On "Fast Casual Nation," I've had the pleasure of engaging with some of the most innovative minds in the restaurant industry. My recent conversation with Jeff Drake, President and CEO of Protein Bar & Kitchen, stands out as a highlight. Jeff's journey from a chemistry graduate to a visionary in the fast casual dining sector is a story that's as unique as it is inspiring.
    A Rebrand that Resonates

    Since taking over Protein Bar &...
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    Chipotle Mexican Grill is one of the most popular fast food chains in the United States, but the company has been facing some challenges in recent months. The Restaurant Power Index (RPI) has shown a slide in Chipotle sentiment, and the company's stock price has also fallen.

    One of the challenges that Chipotle is facing is labor shortages. The company has had to close some stores due to a lack of staff, and it has also raised wages ...
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    When you think about the evolution of the fast-casual restaurant industry, digital innovation might not be the first thing that comes to mind. But for those of us tuned into the latest episode of Fast Casual Nation, digital marketing's role in revolutionizing the customer experience became crystal clear.

    We had the pleasure of sitting down with Gabe Alonso, Vice President of Digital Marketing at El Pollo Loco. Gabe's 15+ years of ex...
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    In this podcast, we sit down with two leaders who are breaking the mold of how to grow brands - Wow Bao exploding in virtual brands and Fat Brands growing in multi-concept. We pick the brains of Geoff Alexander and Andrew Wiederhorn.

    Wow Bao is a fast-casual brand that specializes in steamed buns. The company was founded in 2003 and has grown to over 500 locations in the United States and continues to grow the new model of virtual b...
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    In this podcast, we talk with two successful brand leaders at Wildflower and Dave's Hot Chicken are two of the fastest-growing fast-casual brands in the United States. Wildflower was founded in Phoenix in 2017 and has over 20 locations nationwide. Dave's Hot Chicken was founded in Nashville in 2017 and now has over 100 locations nationwide and internationally.

    Both brands have experienced rapid growth due to their unique offerings a...
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    Craveworthy Brands is a relatively new restaurant group, but it has quickly become one of the most successful in the fast casual sector. Founded in 2022 by Gregg Majewski, Craveworthy Brands is a multi-concept restaurant group that owns and operates a portfolio of emerging and legacy brands.

    Craveworthy Brands' brands include:
    • Wing It On!
    • Budlong Hot Chicken
    • Krafted Burger Bar + Tap
    • Lucky Cat Poke Company
    • Genghis Grill
    • BD's Mongolian ...
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    Fast Casual Nation is the industry's longest-running podcast celebrated for its innovative and insightful discussions that are helping to shape the future of food and dining. Our latest guest, Greg Wold, Vice President of Marketing at Toppers Pizza, Inc., brings his 20-year experience in the food service industry, including stints at QSR heavyweights such as Jimmy John's, Jersey Mike's Subs, and Buffalo Wild Wings, to our conversat...
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    Fast Casual Nation, the trailblazing podcast that's been leading conversations and setting trends in the restaurant industry for years delves into the meat of what makes a food business thrive in a market that's hungry for change. Today, we're honored to have André Vener, Co-founder and Partner of Dog Haus, joining us for an insightful discussion. André, along with his team, took Dog Haus from a single location to a nationwide phen...
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    Fast Casual Nation's latest episode features a candid conversation with Paris Baguette America's CEO, Darren Tipton. Stepping into his role in January 2020, Tipton navigated the uncharted terrain of the pandemic while redefining the brand's identity.

    Faced with operational hurdles due to COVID-19, Tipton focused on reframing the organization's vision. The mission was to re-establish the neighborhood bakery, building on the foundatio...
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    Our guest on Fast Casual Nation is Prakash Karamchandani, known as PK. He is a self-proclaimed foodie and technology junkie, as well as the co-founder of Balance Pan-Asian Grille, a nationally acclaimed fast-casual Asian fusion multi-unit concept based in Ohio. Prakash earned a finance degree from the University of Toledo, where he met his future wife Navdeep and business partner HoChan Jang. PK currently oversees development, fina...
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    The Fast Casual Nation Podcast offers exclusive interviews with experts ranging from top chefs and brand makers to executives and restaurants who work in one of the fastest-growing segments of the restaurant industry. In this episode, I talk with Katy Velazquez, Corporate Executive Chef at QDOBA about how the fast-casual Mexican restaurant is able to stay current on trends and be true to its identity.

    QDOBA with over 730+ restauran...
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    he Fast Casual Nation Podcast offers exclusive interviews with experts ranging from top chefs and brand makers to executives and restaurants who work in one of the fastest-growing segments of the restaurant industry. In this episode I talk with Josh Luger, co-founder of Capital Tacos about key strategies for successfully expanding your restaurant.

    Capital Tacos founded in 2013 is a fast-casual Tex-Mex chain of restaurants Based in ...
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    The Fast Casual Nation Podcast offers exclusive interviews with experts ranging from top chefs and brand makers to executives and restaurants who work in one of the fastest-growing segments of the restaurant industry. In this episode, I talk with Frank Paci, chief executive officer of Newk’s Eatery about improving productivity and simplifying restaurant operations.

    Paci, an industry veteran, has worked within the restaurant and ret...
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    The Fast Casual Nation Podcast offers exclusive interviews with experts ranging from top chefs and brand makers to executives and restaurants who work in one of the fastest-growing segments of the restaurant industry. In this episode, I talk with Mike Lenard, founder and chief executive officer of TaKorean, a DC based fast-casual restaurant chain serving Korean tacos and rice bowls.

    After a career in the outdoor retail industry sel...
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