HotSchedules and NCR Team and a Halloween Hollywood Surprise

The Halloween edition of MRM’s Daily Bite features HotSchedules, NCR, Hai Hospitality, Fat Sal’s, The Original Dinerant and FAT.

Send news items to Barbara Castiglia at 

MRM Daily Bite Logo

HotSchedules and NCR Team

HotSchedules® and NCR Corporation forged a strategic integration that adds HotSchedules’ workforce management platforms to the NCR Aloha restaurant point-of-sale (POS) solution. This relationship creates a more powerful solution for restaurant operators by uniting HotSchedules’ labor management and scheduling solutions with NCR’s leading restaurant POS platform, allowing staffing and inventory management to be influenced by critical sales trend information, through analysis of historical sales trends and forecasting data.Further, product and engineering teams at both companies will regularly share product updates with the goal of continued innovation, as well as ensuring their systems work seamlessly together.

It’s important that restaurant brands align themselves with platform-based technology providers who can enable and integrate best-of-breed solutions.

As part of this new relationship, HotSchedules can leverage NCR’s next generation cloud integration platform.

“HotSchedules and NCR already share thousands of customers that integrate our labor solutions with the NCR Aloha point-of-sale solution,” said Tammy Troutman, senior director of channels at HotSchedules. “Through this strategic integration, HotSchedules will leverage information captured in the restaurant’s POS to help managers make smarter, more informed decisions that are based on historical data and actionable intelligence – mapping staffing and inventory solutions against sales spikes, traffic patterns and menu item performance.”

With this agreement, HotSchedules will become a certified third-party provider of NCR, and NCR will become a part of the HotSchedules’ Global Partner Program. HotSchedules and NCR will also work together on co-marketing opportunities.

“The restaurant industry is undergoing the rapid digitization of all business processes and it’s important that restaurant brands align themselves with platform-based technology providers who can enable and integrate best-of-breed solutions,” said Don Zimmerman, general manager and vice president of hospitality solutions, NCR Corporation. “Integrating HotSchedules with the NCR Aloha platform brings together two market-leading solutions and offers our mutual customers the simplicity and visibility they need to manage their entire restaurant operations.”

Franklin and Cole Partner on Loro Concept

Aaron Franklin of  Franklin Barbecue has joined Hai Hospitality’s new project, Loro, on South Lamar as a partner. The concept is an Asian Smokehouse and Bar with a focus on smoked meats and sides that combines Texan and Asian influences. The Loro culinary team has already been testing their menu so Franklin is eager to join Chef Tyson Cole in the kitchen (and at the smoker) to start menu testing and creating, they report.

Aaron Franklin, right, and Tyson Cole
Photos by Logan Crable

“I’ve known Aaron Franklin for a long time and always admired his dedication to his craft,” said Chef Cole. “I respect his talent, his passion, and the way he conducts his business, I couldn’t be more thrilled to be partnering on Loro with him. I believe we have built a solid concept and I cannot wait to see to what heights this project will rise with his involvement.”

Hai Hospitality, via the original concept Uchi and Chef Cole, has garnered numerous accolades including awards from the James Beard Foundation and Food & Wine, among others. Cole and the Hai Hospitality team have envisioned this concept for a while, wanting to incorporate flavors from the east with inspiration drawn from Texas traditions. 

Franklin, who won a James Beard Foundation Award as well as nods from Food & Wine and Bon Appetit to name a few, is excited about digging in and collaborating with the Chef Cole and the Loro team.

“I’ve been inspired by Hai’s dedication to detail and their quest for perfection for years,” added Franklin. “It seems natural to combine forces with our shared passions…I can’t wait for Loro!”

Loro is an Asian smokehouse and bar brought to you by Tyson Cole and Aaron Franklin with a menu featuring grilled and smoked meats, sides, craft beer and batch cocktails. You can order food at the bar and sit in the warm and expansive indoor space or outside on the porch shaded by a canopy of hundred-year-old oak trees.

Loro will be located at 2115 South Austin Blvd., Austin TX 78704.

Hollywood Halloween Surprise

Fat Sal’s had a Hollywood Halloween surprise for guests as the restaurant transformed into “McDowell’s” from the 1988 Box office hit “Coming to America.”

The McDowell’s theme was a part of the interior and exterior of the restaurant. The featured food items included “The Big Mick,”  “The Sexual Chocolate Shake” and “The Zamunda Fries.”

The brand has locations in Hollywood, Westwood, San Diego, Austin, and recently opened in Encino.

The Original Dinerant Welcomes New Chef

The Original Dinerant welcomes Executive Chef Roscoe Roberson to the downtown Portland social supper club. Roberson brings nearly 15 years of hospitality experience from distinguished restaurants, most recently serving as Executive Chef of Chefstable Group, based in Portland.

Chef Roscoe Roberson

Born in Tucson and raised in New York, Roberson learned to cook from his grandparents. Finding himself in the kitchen in one way or another as he grew older, he transformed part-time jobs into a career. After deciding to attend culinary school in his hometown at Pima Community College, he trained as a chef with Starwood-Westin where he ran banquets for large groups. He later relocated to Bend, OR to operate Kokanee Café and then headed north to explore the burgeoning food city of Portland.

Banh Mi Burger

Roscoe now calls The Original Dinerant his home and looks forward to maintaining a creative menu while establishing American diner food as an essential part of Portland’s culture. With experience in managing staff and back-of-house operations, he most recently opened and operated six new concept restaurants with Chefstable Group.

“The sophisticated yet playful approach of The Original Dinerant is a new venture for me,”said Roberson. “I’m privileged to join the team and provide added imagination to the menu while continuing to contribute to the Portland dining scene.”

FAT Completes Acquisition

FAT (Fresh. Authentic. Tasty.) Brands Inc.  completed the acquisition of Homestyle Dining LLC, the parent company to the Ponderosa Steakhouse and Bonanza Steakhouse brands for $10.5 million. With the acquisition of Ponderosa and Bonanza, FAT Brands’ franchisees now operate more than 300 restaurants around the globe with system-wide sales exceeding $300 million.

Established in 1965 and 1963 respectively, Ponderosa and Bonanza offer the quintessential American steakhouse experience with a diverse menu featuring delicious flame-grilled steaks and mouthwatering entrees. The two brands operate more than 120 locations across the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Taiwan. The Company plans to develop a smaller-scale Ponderosa and Bonanza concept to drive new store growth, specifically internationally, where demand for traditional American fare continues to grow.

“Ponderosa and Bonanza both possess strong brand identities that appeal to a broad consumer-base, and align with FAT Brands’ commitment to providing guests with high-quality, made-to-order meals,” said Andy Wiederhorn, President and CEO of FAT Brands. “The completion of this acquisition will allow our management team to seamlessly extend Ponderosa and Bonanza into new segments and expand their footprints in existing markets through the Company’s extensive franchisee network.”