An Homage to Deli, FoodTrekking and Tao Chicago

This edition of MRM’s Daily Bite includes news from Cameron Mitchell Restaurants (CMR), Square One, Cultivate Hospitality Group, Tao Group, McDonald’s, SICOM and NEXTEP SYSTEMS,  Southern Glazer’s,  7shifts,  World Food Travel Association, APG Cash Drawer and The Monday Campaigns.

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 Deli Delights from CMR

Harvey & Ed’s, inspired by the classic Jewish delicatessen, is the newest restaurant concept to be introduced by Cameron Mitchell Restaurants (CMR). The restaurant is now open in the Short North Arts District at 698 North High Street in Columbus. The full-service restaurant and bar offers traditional noshes that take on an upscale contemporary twist, focusing on fresh ingredients, simple preparations and familial hospitality.

Harvey & Ed’s pays homage to CMR President David Miller and VP of Ocean Prime Mitch Miller’s father and uncle – best friends and brothers-in-law. The two could often be found at their favorite delicatessens enjoying each other’s company over a good cocktail and a plate of food. Similarly, David Miller and CMR Founder Cameron Mitchell have traveled together for the past 20 years, experiencing and comparing delis from New York to Boston, and from Chicago to Beverly Hills.

Harvey & Ed

“Columbus offers one of the best dining scenes in the nation, and we are eager to introduce a concept that is unlike anything currently available in Central Ohio,” said David Miller. “Harvey & Ed’s menu focuses on taking classic delicatessen favorites and elevating them with a modern culinary twist. We are excited for our guests to experience the unique dishes handcrafted by our talented culinary team.”

Signature dishes include:

Chef’s Favorites

  • Bubbe’s Matzo Ball Soup – chicken, vegetables and house made matzo ball
  • Noshes – Chopped Liver, Bissel of Caviar, Hummus, Latke Royale, and more
  • Deli-style sandwiches – featuring Reuben, Roast Beef, Falafel Hoagie, Turkey Rachel, All Beef Hot Dog and Smoked Salmon Bagel. All sandwiches are served with a side of fries, coleslaw or potato salad

Main Plates

  • Roasted Chicken Tabbouleh – tomato, bulgar wheat, mint, cucumber, lemon vinaigrette
  • Roasted Halibut – toasted almonds, golden raisins, chili relish, cilantro, evoo
  • Pomegranate Braised Lamb – spicy stewed tomatoes, chickpeas, radish citrus salad


  • A selection of cured fish served with Block’s Bagels, cream cheese, tomato, cucumber, onion, capers, house pickles & olives.
  • Fish offerings include smoked whitefish, kippered salmon, smoked salmon, house gravlax, whitefish salad and smoked salmon spread.
  • Brunch
  • Babka French Toast – chocolate babka, strawberries, mascarpone whipped cream and candied turkey bacon
  • Smoked Salmon Benedict – two poached eggs, toasted challah, caviar, hollandaise, and served with fruit and breakfast potatoes
  • Ed’s Hash and Eggs – two sunny-side up eggs, schmaltz potatoes, pastrami, brussels sprouts, caramelized onions and choice of bagel

House Made Desserts

  • Chocolate Babka – French toast, strawberries and whipped cream
  • Cheese Blintz – seasonal fruit, honey and granola
  • Apple Tart – Schmaltz crust, apple and apricot compote, whipped cream

The 4,100-square foot space offers a traditional deli counter for carryout and catering orders, as well as table seating for approximately 140 guests. The restaurant also has an energetic bar, which serves handcrafted cocktails, wine, house sodas and egg creams. Harvey & Ed’s serves lunch and dinner daily along with brunch on Saturday and Sunday. 

Eatertainment in Toronto

Square One’s West Expansion development in Torn will house both The Rec Room, which will bring together dining experiences with  live entertainment and amusement gaming experiences, all under one roof and The Food District, an elevated experience for foodie tourists and locals alike. The addition of both The Rec Room and The Food District is in response to the growing interest in today’s food culture, with a focus on offering local, handmade foods in a setting that embraces both new- and old-world food emporiums. Stretching over 34,000 square feet, The Food District will offer an array of specialty products as well as a space to meet, explore and share the love of food through tastings, cooking classes, dinner parties, book signings and other special events.

Rendering of the Square One Shopping Centre West Expansion Phase 1 – Food District

“In the coming months, we will reveal more details surrounding the West Expansion,” says Square One director and general manager Greg Taylor. “Square One continues to be a premier location for world-class retailers and for the discerning consumer. The Food District will provide an inspired, fulfilling and unforgettable experience for food lovers and adventurers in a setting that encourages discovery, community, and culinary indulgence.”

The 2.2 million square foot retail destination is undergoing a $580 million redevelopment.

Cultivate Hospitality Group Launches

Cultivate Hospitality Group, a Los Angeles-based full-service food and beverage ideation, consulting and management company created to pair real estate developers and property owners with restaurant and entertainment concepts launched. Providing a one-stop shop for unique food and beverage and real estate development opportunities, Cultivate offers a full menu of capabilities that can be tailored through à la carte options including custom concept creation and master planning, development oversight, public relations/marketing strategies, asset management, market analysis and more. 

“Curated culinary programming has proven to be the secret sauce in driving successful development,” said Peter Peterson, President and Managing Partner of Cultivate and former Vice President of Related Urban Development leading food and beverage programming for prime mixed-use projects such as New York City’s 17 million-square-foot Hudson Yards and 2.8 million-square-foot Time Warner Center, as well as the Restaurant Collection at The Cosmopolitan Las Vegas. “We have specialized expertise in fostering connections between hospitality and real estate and curating concepts that maximize value, whether it’s a hotel that could be revitalized with a timeless restaurant, or an office space that needs a creative food and beverage concept to appeal to trend-seeking entrepreneurs.”

Upon launch, Cultivate has been engaged to support the following projects:

  • Flower Mart, San Francisco: Kilroy Realty Corp has enlisted Cultivate to assist in the master planning and redevelopment of San Francisco’s 2.3 million-square-foot Flower Mart project, the city’s largest mixed-use project since the development of Embarcadero Center. Phase one to be unveiled in 2021 with project completion scheduled for 2023.
  • Marriott Mission Bay, San Francisco: Cultivate is providing concepting and operator search services for the 250-room Marriott Mission Bay, set to become the city’s first four-star new-build hotel in over a decade. The project is scheduled to open in Spring 2021.
  • Grand Avenue Project, Los Angeles: Cultivate will conceptualize the food and beverage master plan for the Frank Gehry-designed Grand Ave project in downtown Los Angeles, developed by Related. Once complete in Q4 2021, the over one-million-square-foot development will include more than 100,000 square feet of retail, a movie theater, a 314-room Equinox Hotel, 428 residences and a food and beverage offering consisting of approximately a dozen restaurant spaces.

“Developers are attracted to the value-add Cultivate offers by specializing in both the culinary and development sides of the business which is a unique combination not replicated elsewhere,” said Sam Bakhshandehpour, Board Member and Principal of Cultivate. “The team has created the ultimate destination delivering the utmost quality in concept curation for food and beverage clients.”

Tao Comes to Chicago

TAO Group will introduce Chicago to its dining and entertainment concept by transforming a historic 1892 landmark into TAOChicago. Located in River North, the design-driven restaurant and adjoining nightclub is set for a September opening. 

In partnership with Four Corners, TAO Group set out to preserve and restore the building’s glory while introducing an updated canvas to present its menu of Pan-Asian cuisine, premier hospitality and dynamic nightlife vibes to Chicago. Originally designed by Henry Ives Cobb, the Romanesque Revival granite-clad building was once home to the Chicago Historical Society, the Chicago Institute of Design, recording studios, and a series of nightclubs before TAO’s takeover of the 34,000 square foot space. Inspired by the original TAO locations in New York City and Las Vegas, TAO Chicago will feature multiple levels, creating dynamic spaces within the historic building’s shell, including a luxurious nightclub and special event space.

“TAO Group has been eyeing Chicago for its next home for quite some time but it was not until the opportunity presented itself to partner with Four Corners at this historic landmark that it truly felt like the perfect location to enact our vision,” said Paul Goldstein, TAO Group Managing Partner. “TAO Chicago will strive to provide guests with an ongoing flow of hospitality and entertainment – from a specialty cocktail at the Ink Lounge, to an exceptional dining experience in our breathtaking dining room, and culminating with late night dancing and libations at TAO Chicago’s nightclub.”

Designed by Rockwell Group, the goal was to maintain the building’s look on the outside while adding TAO’s Asian-influenced DNA to the multi-level restaurant, lounge and nightclub. The structure’s soaring brick-walled spaces, arched floor-to-ceiling windows, and special geometry and sightlines were weaved into the final design of TAO Chicago. Each element of the meticulously designed space draws inspiration from other TAO locations and converges to create the dining and nightlife guest experience TAO Group is known for. Guests of TAO Chicago will find murals by artist Hush throughout the massive building and TAO’s signature 16-foot-tall Quan Yin statue anchoring one end of the dining room.

TAO Chicago’s restaurant menu, created by TAO Group Partner and Chef Ralph Scamardella for the 300-seat restaurant, is complete with great Pan-Asian offerings from the sea, sky and land including Taosignature dishes like Satay of Chilean Sea Bass, Crispy Rice Tuna and a Wagyu Rib-Eye Teppanyaki. In addition to hand-made dim sum, TAO Chicago will feature a more robust beef/steak section and brand new sushi and dessert menus. Guests will also be able to enjoy an extensive menu of delicious specialty cocktails including the TAO-tini and Ruby Red Dragon as well as sake flights specifically designed to complement TAO’s menu.

“We are so excited to bring our style of dining to such a dynamic city and introduce a trip through the cuisines of Asia to the hub of the Midwest,” said Chef Scamardella. “The menu will be a true celebration of the best dishes TAO has to offer along with new seasonal dishes unique to TAO Chicago.”

Guests will enter the 7,000 square-foot TAO Chicago Nightclub after passing through a 100-year-old, massive Chinese gate and down a lantern-lit exterior alley. There will be two nightclubs within this space separated by an operable wall that allows them to be combined from a two room to one room venue. The rear club features 40-foot-tall ceilings, original soaring windows, a 20-foot tall Hush mural, a 10-foot-tall custom-made Japanese bell from which an oversized disco ball descends and a series of restored arches from one end of the club to the other. The front club is more intimate and centers around a DJ booth enclosed with a metal cage adorned with mirrors and Asian-inspired filigree. Glowing and mirrored lotus pendants float above the dance floor while two bars service the space.

Reel It In

McDonald’s introduced a downloadable card game, “Reel It In!” Created with the brand’s longtime partner, the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC), the game marks five years of McDonald’s being the first and only global restaurant company to serve MSC-certified fish at every U.S. location. 

In the words of Brian Perkins, MSC Regional Director of Americas, McDonald’s sustainability journey impact is two-fold by “promoting sustainable practices and ensuring traceability along the supply chain”while helping “ensure that our children and grandchildren will be able to enjoy seafood for generations to come.” 

Just as McDonald’s works with MSC to ensure every Filet-O-Fish sandwich globally comes from a sustainably managed fishery, “Reel It In!” puts teamwork at the center of a sustainable future. And while Filet-O-Fish lovers have shared their passion with others for years, the downloadable game gives them a new, tangible way to instill that love in others.

Matt Tinning, Associate Vice President of the Oceans program at Environmental Defense Fund, said, “McDonald’s longstanding commitment to sustainable seafood sourcing has set an important industry standard and sends the message that science-based fisheries management is good for the environment, the economy, and people who love to eat fish.”


SICOM acquired NEXTEP SYSTEMS with NEXTEP’s lineup of self-ordering solutions includes kiosks, touchscreen drive thru systems and mobile ordering being added to SICOM’s Encounter™ Omni-Channel Point of Sale platform.

NEXTEP was founded by Tommy Woycik when he realized self-ordering technology could prevent people from waiting in lines at restaurants. After creating its first self-ordering solution, NEXTEP has expanded its product catalog to include a full spectrum of order management solutions on its single-platform, cloud-based architecture.

“We are truly excited to welcome NEXTEP to the SICOM family,” said Jim Flynn, CEO of SICOM. “The talented team at NEXTEP has created an impressive lineup of industry-leading and inventive self-ordering technologies, and this acquisition will allow SICOM to offer the most comprehensive omni-channel point of sale platform in the industry. We’re also excited to expand into managed food service and fast casual restaurants with a broader and proven suite of products designed specifically for these markets.” 

“The team at NEXTEP has accomplished a tremendous amount since our inception in 2005,” said Tommy Woycik, President and Founder of NEXTEP. “SICOM is a perfect fit for NEXTEP, and we are excited to join a company with the same level of commitment to providing leading technology solutions to managed food service providers and quick service and fast casual restaurants. We’re confident that joining forces with SICOM will provide new opportunities for the NEXTEP team and our customers.” 

Iceberg Vodka Signs Distribution Agreement with Southern Glazer’s 

Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits of Canada signed a ten-year distribution agreement with Iceberg Vodka, the only national vodka brand that is 100 percent Canadian owned and operated. This is Southern Glazer’s first agreement with Iceberg Vodka and represents the beginning of a long-term strategic partnership to expand distribution of the vodka brand throughout retail and on-premise locations in Canada.

Southern Glazer’s will distribute Iceberg Vodka in nine provinces and three territories in Canada (excluding Newfoundland). The agreement was effective June 1, with the exception of Quebec, which launches October 1.

“We are delighted to be joining Southern Glazers Wines & Spirits of Canada portfolio of brands, which is a perfect fit for Iceberg Vodka,” said David Meyers, President and CEO of Iceberg Vodka. “Together, we are excited about the opportunity to continue to drive and expand the distribution and sales of Iceberg, Canada’s Vodka, with Southern Glazer’s extensive customer base.”

“When a supplier like Iceberg Vodka chooses to work with Southern Glazer’s, it reinforces the value that we bring to the Canadian marketplace,” added Doug Wieland, Executive Vice President and General Manager of Canada, for Southern Glazer’s. “We look forward to leveraging our selling expertise and deep data insights to introduce this quality vodka brand to more of our retail and on-premise customers throughout Canada.”.”

7shifts Launches New Tool for Multi-Location Restaurants 

7shifts released The Enterprise Dashboard that provides real-time labor intelligence across all locations. It tracks key metrics such as total sales, labor percentage, sales per labor hour and overtime in real-time. Restaurant leaders can then easily review, sort or export such data as needed to gain better insight into labor performance by individual location or across the organization.

7shifts developed the Enterprise Dashboard to provide restaurant operators with a straightforward way to review and track increasingly complex labor concerns as they add new locations and employees. Labor costs are on the rise and as a result, restaurants across the U.S. and Canada are monitoring their labor performance more closely in order to stay profitable. In fact, a recent study by Toast found that 47 percent of all restaurants have scheduled employees for fewer hours to offset higher labor costs.

“7shifts’ mission is to improve happiness and efficiency in the workplace,” said Jordan Boesch, 7shifts CEO. “With solutions like our Enterprise Dashboard, we’re giving executive-level restaurant leaders the insight they need to spot gaps and improve scheduling efficiencies across their multiple locations.”

Paul Zarmati, Director of IT at Bareburger, which operates over 40 locations, said “The 7shifts Enterprise Dashboard has helped us view and track our entire organization’s performance quickly and easily. Before it would take us hours to put together a weekly report for all our locations. Now, thanks to 7shifts we can pull the data in a matter of seconds, helping our business focus on efficiency and growth.”

FoodTrekking Awards

Applications are now open for the next round of the World Food Travel Association’s FoodTrekking Awards benchmarking excellence and innovation in food and beverage tourism. Now in their fourth year, the FoodTrekking Awards recognize excellence and innovation in both individual businesses as well as destinations. Interested businesses are invited to apply today. Applications will close on September 10, when the judges begin to process the entries. Winners will be notified on October 10 and announced publicly at the Food Travel Innovation Summit in London on November 4.

The follow features are new or improved for this round of the FoodTrekking Awards:

The Awards categories have been overhauled to more precisely reflect the needs and interest of our industry. With nine (9) new awards categories:

  • Best Use of Local Ingredients in a Foodservice Menu
  • Best Conversion of Historic Building as a Food Lover Attraction
  • Creative Use of Space for Food/Drink Experience
  • Most Innovative Food or Beverage Marketing Campaign for a Destination
  • Best Use of Instagram to Promote Food/Beverage Tourism
  • Best Local Storytelling in a Food or Beverage Experience
  • Most Authentic Food or Beverage Tour Operator Experience
  • Best Food & Beverage Packaging Waste Reduction Campaign
  • Best Use of Food/Beverage for Cross-Cultural Understanding

The application fee is a flat US $110 per category. Members of the World Food Travel Association will find discount codes available in the online member community. Businesses interested in applying can learn more or apply here.

APG Cash Drawer Celebrates 40 Years

 APG Cash Drawer, LLC celebrates forty years to a wide variety of retail and hospitality environments. Since its inception on May 31, 1978, the company has developed an extensive portfolio of cash drawer and cash management solutions, including the  SMARTtill© Technology platform, for small and large retailers across the globe. 

“A lot has changed within the point of sale industry in forty years and I am honored to be a part of it,” stated Mark J. Olson, President and CEO of APG Cash Drawer. “This milestone not only represent the dedication and tireless efforts of our entire APG Team, but the support and loyalty of all our partners and customers over the past 40 years. It has been a journey, not a destination and we’re all eager to see what the next 40 years will bring. Thank you for your continued support.”

“Forty years of delivering innovative point-of-sale solutions and exceptional customer service is a momentous accomplishment for any organization in today’s environment,” stated Andrew Carr, Managing Director at APG EMEA. “We are fortunate to have achieved this landmark on the shoulders of our customers, current and former employees, vendors, investors, strategic partners and affiliates around the world. This is solely due to the long-standing relationships cultivated with them for the last 40 years – Thank you!” 

Getting Meatless Wins Meaty Award

The Monday Campaigns’ “Getting Meatless Monday on More Foodservice Menus by Addressing Challenges” won the Big Apple in the Public Service: Government, Associations and Non-Profit Organizations category at the Big Apple Awards 2018 Gala, held on June 11.

This winning entry demonstrated how it fostered understanding of Meatless Monday as an initiative that seeks to reduce preventable illnesses and environmental impacts associated with meat production and consumption. Meatless Monday scientific adviser Johns Hopkins surveyed operators to determine best practices, which informed Meatless Monday’s free downloadable foodservice guides.

The Monday Campaigns/Meatless Monday PR team Cherry Dumaual (center) and Nara Sandberg (right) show off their Big Apple Trophy with Sharon Fenster (left), president of PRSA-NY at the Big Apple Awards 2018 Gala.