San Antonio, TX  (  Ovation Brands’® portfolio of restaurants – Old Country Buffet®, Ryan’s®, HomeTown® Buffet and Country Buffet® – and Furr’s Fresh Buffet® are making themselves the go-to for the holidays, as they serve up seasonal menus on Christmas Day (Monday, December 25, 2017). Restaurants will be open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on December 25. The Christmas menus will be available all day.

“The holidays can be a joyful and sometimes stressful time. Our restaurants offer a warm and welcoming environment for guests to sit back, relax and enjoy this time of year with family and friends,” said

Mike Griffith, Director of Marketing for Ovation Brands® and Furr’s Fresh Buffet®. “We proudly offer a delicious selection of home-style meals, including some traditional favorites, that will surely satisfy guests’ holiday cravings.”

On Christmas Day, the buffet restaurants will be open from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Holiday menus will be available throughout the day. Special holiday pricing may apply for adults and seniors.

The following are featured holiday menu offerings.

HomeTown Buffet, Old Country Buffet and Country Buffet

Entrées and sides: Carved turkey, steak, carved ham, butterfly shrimp, carved...

( has released its latest restaurant openings report, providing restaurant vendors with a sampling of fresh sales and marketing leads that can be found on their website.

Flhip provides regularly updated lead lists, allowing vendors to check for updates at any time.  To see leads in your sales area click here.

Click on the map above to see how Flhip can get you in the door first of new restaurants!

St. Paul, MN – Parlour Bar
This upbeat, edgy craft cocktail concept will open their second location at 271 W. 7th. Street sometime in the early part of the first quarter, 2018. Patrons will enjoy their tradition of a full bar along with their famous cocktail classes. The menu while sparse offers variety of handhelds and shareables to enjoy.

Phoenix, AZ – The Larder & The Delta
Chef Stephen Jones will debut a brick and mortar version of his southern comfort cuisine eatery to be located at 200 W. Portland Street with a projected opening of March, 2018. The menu will be short, only...

El Segunda, CA  (  Leave it to Kobe Bryant to disprove the theory of two good to be true. And leave it to Roy’s Restaurant, owned by life-long fans of the Los Angeles Lakers, to honor the legend with a specially-priced signature dish and a donation to the Black Mamba’s main philanthropy, the Kobe & Vanessa Bryant Family Foundation

The Lakers will retire Bryant’s No. 8 and No. 24 jersey numbers in a ceremony on Monday, December 18 at halftime of their game against the Golden State Warriors, the franchise announced this week. Bryant joins a select few of NBA greats not only to have his jersey retired, but an even more exclusive club to have two jerseys retired.

Roy’s with 17 locations in the continental United States, some within miles from Staples Center, is putting its own spin on the ceremony by slashing the price of its signature entrée Misoyaki...

From impeccable service to one-of-a-kind dining experiences, OpenTable, the world’s leading provider of online restaurant reservations, has revealed its 100 Best Restaurants in America list for 2017. The list of the 100 Best Restaurants in America reflects the combined opinions of more than 12 million restaurant reviews submitted by verified OpenTable diners for more than 26,000 restaurants in all 50 states and Washington, D.C.

From restaurants with world-renowned chefs to breakthrough newcomers, the complete list showcases a diverse group of restaurants in 24 states and Washington, D.C. California and New York are tied at the top of the list, each boasting 19 winning restaurants, followed by Illinois and Pennsylvania with eight, Washington D.C. with seven and Texas with five. Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Ohio, and South Carolina all boast three winners while Hawaii, New Jersey, North Carolina and Virginia each have two. Alabama, Arizona, Connecticut, Kansas, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Washington are also represented.

While American, French, and Italian cuisine proved to be the most popular, there is a growing presence of globally inspired cuisines on the list, including Mediterranean, Japanese, Indian and Middle Eastern. The range of cuisines highlighted points to diners’ growing appetites for more exotic flavors and destination-driven offerings.

“While the winning restaurants this year are each distinctive, they all consistently deliver exceptional dishes, impeccable hospitality, and a meal to...

Manchester, NH  (  Wing It On!®, a rapidly growing chain of fast-casual chicken restaurants, is excited to announce that its first New Hampshire location will be opening at 1875 South Willow St. this coming January. The easily accessible location, situated next to Bob’s Discount Furniture, will initially offer take out and dine-in options. Local delivery will be added shortly after launch. Since the Grand Opening week is expected to be very busy, customers are encouraged to order in advance by calling the store at 603-232-2344 or by placing an online order at

In addition to authentic “Buffalo-quality” chicken wings tossed in award-winning sauces, the Wing It On! menu also features freshly made, buttermilk-fried crispy chicken sandwiches. Additionally, a variety of unique wraps, salads and side items will be available. The diverse menu is perfect to satisfy the varied cravings of any family. Manchester area residents can expect convenient hours, as well as online ordering made available via the previously mentioned website or through the Wing It On! Mobile app,...

Free Hooters wings for a year to first 10 guests on opening day, Monday, Dec 18 at 4 p.m.

Atlanta, GA  (  Hooters announced the opening of a new restaurant in Palm Bay, Florida, marking the 52nd overall location in the Sunshine State. To help celebrate, Hooters is giving away free wings for a year to the first 10 guests in line on opening day, Monday, Dec. 18 at 4 p.m.

Hooters of Palm Bay is the latest ground up new prototype building for Hooters, which features 7,372 square feet of space and is conveniently located at 695 Palm Bay Road, just 10 miles from the Melbourne Beach coast. The new location features a 1,600 square-foot outdoor patio and offers guests front row seats to cheer on their favorite sports teams while enjoying Hooters original and smoked chicken wings.

“Just last week we celebrated our 200th corporate-owned restaurant opening in Kissimmee East, and now with another new Florida location opening up, we are certainly experiencing great momentum in this state,” said Mark Whittle, chief development officer, Hooters of America. “Our unique blend of craveable menu items along with our fun atmosphere and unrivalled Hooters Girl hospitality makes Hooters a sports-viewing...

North Carolina  (  Specialty Lighting introduces its RDF60 recessed downlight LED – a perfect addition when highlighting any space. The 8 watt, energy saving, flanged LED fixture is offered with two standard color lamp temperatures (2700K and 3000K) and six finishes including black  (BK), white (WH), antique brass (AB), brushed nickel (BN), polished brass (PB), and polished chrome (PC). Having a cord and plug, it’s a simple solution for nearly any downlight application where up to 50 fixtures can be linked for displays, cabinets, furniture, etc. RDF60 LED is dimmable using Specialty Lighting’s rotary dimmer, and is UL / cUL listed.  A trimless style is also available (RD60 LED).

  • Electrical rating: 120V, 60Hz
  • LED integrated technology (non-replaceable lamp)
  • Power Cord: 18/2 SPT-2 (black) with standard male plug
  • Construction: steel
  • Installation methods: adjustable mounting ring, spring clips, or screw holes.  Installation hole diameter 3 3/8″ for the adjustable ring or screw holes; 3 3/4″ for spring clips.
  • Height: 2 7/8″
  • Diameter: 3 1/4″
  • Compatible with Specialty Lighting PH3121 (on/off switch) and PD6113 (full range rotary dimmer)
  • 5 year warranty

RDF60 recessed downlight LED is available with customization for project needs.

Elevated Sports Restaurant Franchise Offers Free Food for First 84 in Line & More for New Corporate-Owned Location

Cincinnati, OH  (  Buffalo Wings & Rings, a rapidly growing family-friendly elevated sports restaurant brand, is pleased to announce the grand opening celebration of its newest corporate-owned restaurant at 4615 Factory Colony Lane in the Oakley Station development. The new restaurant is set to open on Wednesday, December 20, 2017. However, grand opening events will take place for two weeks, including an event where the first 84 people in line will win free Buffalo Wings & Rings food for a year and a Bengals pep rally featuring a live broadcast with Dan Hoard and Dave Lapham with player appearances and giveaways. Buffalo Wings & Rings will also be celebrating the opening on social media where Facebook fans have the chance to win $100 gift cards.

“We are happy to celebrate our latest restaurant opening in our home market of Cincinnati as we cap off another successful year for the company,” said Nader Masadeh, President and CEO of Buffalo Wings & Rings. “To show our appreciation for the support we’ve enjoyed since...

Plus, Return of Nékter’s Annual New Year 3-Day Cleanse Sale

Santa Ana, CA  (  Fans of Nékter Juice Bar, the Southern California restaurant brand behind the authentically fresh and clean, modern juice bar experience, will be able to reset, reboot and reenergize after the holidays with two new fresh and delicious, immunity- and metabolism-boosting menu offerings: Grapefruit Reboot Juice and Skinny Skoop. Available from New Year’s Day through February 4 at participating restaurants, the two limited-time special menu items are low in calories yet deliciously high in flavor and healthy ingredients. Additionally, Nékter will bring back its annual New Year $99 3-Day Cleanse Sale, featuring six, detoxifying formulas that provide 15 pounds of cold-pressed fruits and veggies each day. The cleanse sale will be available at participating restaurants from January 1 through January 14.

Naturally jam-packed with Vitamin C, Nékter’s new Grapefruit Reboot Juice is a perfect balance of tart, metabolism-boosting grapefruit and the cool sweetness of apple, orange and fennel. The freshly made juice is available in 16-ounce, 24-ounce and 32-ounce servings.

Nékter’s new Skinny Skoop is an all-natural, immunity-...

Pizza trailblazer adds shareable options to the menu

Dallas, TX  (RestaurantNews.comPie Five Pizza Co. is expanding its take on fast casual pizza.  The brand known for revolutionizing customizable pizzas made on-the-spot with unlimited toppings is adding shareable 14-inch pizzas to the mix. The new larger pizzas includes unlimited toppings for the same great price.

“We are always looking for ways to elevate the guest experience, which is why we have added 14” shareable pizzas to the menu,” said Christina Coy, Vice President of Marketing for Pie Five Pizza Co. “Our guest research revealed consumers wanted to share Pie Five with their friends and family. This provides us an opportunity to make some exciting enhancements to our brand and a larger version of our custom pizzas is a natural addition and provides potential occasions.”

Pie Five’s fast casual concept allows guests to completely customize their own, personal pizza and now the 14” pizza from a selection of more than 40 fresh toppings, seven savory sauces and three made-from-scratch crusts. The new 14” pizza will begin rolling out nationwide this week.

“We are very excited about adding shareable pizzas to the menu,” said Scott Crane, Chief Executive Officer of...

( has released its latest Restaurant Chain Growth Report.

Growing Concepts of Multi Unit Operators
Concepts that have grown by at least 5% (if less than 50 units).

Midvale, UT-based THE PIE PIZZERIA (founded 1982) has increased by 1 unit, from 5 to 6 (20% growth). These family/casual pizza restaurants are open for lunch and dinner, with a $6-$15+ per person check average. Beer is served and seating is for about 150. All the restaurants are in UT.

Dewey Beach, DE based THE RUSTY RUDDER (founded 1979) has increased by 1 unit for the Jimmy’s Grille concept, from 2 to 3 (50% concept growth) for an overall company increase from 6 to 7 (17% growth). The other company concepts are Bottle & Cork (1) Ivy (1), Northbeach (1) and The Rusty Rudder (1). These family/casual restaurants American cuisine and seafood and are open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Per person check average is $10-$30. Full bar service is available and seating is for about 200. All the restaurants are located in DE.

Burlington, NC-based LA FIESTA RESTAURANTE MEXICANO (founded 1993) has increased by 1 unit, from 5 to 6 (20% growth). These family/casual restaurants are open for lunch and dinner, with an $8-$20+ per person check average....

Houston, TX  (  Big City Wings is excited to announce the opening of their newest location in the Houston area! Located at 7620 Katy Freeway Suite 460, the family-friendly sports bar launched its opening Wednesday, December 13th.

Situated in the heart of Houston at the intersection of Loop 610 and the Katy Freeway, Big City Wings MARQ*E is the first location to open outside of the suburbs. Within 7700 square feet, Big City Wings promises a great variety of happy hour, lunch and daily specials embracing ice-cold beers, juicy burgers and the best wings in the city. The most popular item on the menu is, of course, the chicken wings served with over 25 different flavorful sauces including two new seasonal flavors, Jamaican Jerk, and Asian Sensation.

This location features a horseshoe-shaped bar, a spacious patio dining area, an arcade for kids and over 45 big screen TV’s and projectors equipped for the everyday sports fan. “Houston sports has never been more exciting. Big City Wings is a natural complement to the Marq-E Entertainment complex and its entire focus on family fun. After a day of playing games, going to the movies, and...

Leading fast casual cafe closes 20th anniversary year with more than 180 franchise agreements and 104 new openings

Atlanta, GA  (  Tropical Smoothie Cafe, the leading fast casual cafe concept known for its better-for-you food and smoothies with a tropical twist, announced today franchise and foodservice veteran Emily Harrington has signed her second multi-unit franchise agreement with the company in less than a year to develop eight more cafes throughout Florida. Harrington currently has four locations open in Tampa with her fifth slated to open in January 2018. Development plans for the additional eight cafes are currently underway, which are slated to open over the next several years throughout Pasco County. Tropical Smoothie Cafe has experienced a surge in franchise development recently, with Harrington’s two multi-unit deals contributing to the more than 180 agreements signed in 2017 alone.

“As our 20th anniversary year comes to an end, we have several accomplishments to celebrate, such as surpassing our goal of opening 100 locations in 2017 and signing a record number of franchise agreements in a year. It’s because of our passionate and committed franchisees like Emily Harrington that Tropical Smoothie Cafe has accelerated development and rapidly grown its footprint nationwide,”...

Napa, CA  (RestaurantNews.comDickey’s Barbecue Pit continues their expansion in California with a new location in Napa slated to open in 2018. The new location will be owned by California locals, Rene and Gwen Bassett. New to the restaurant industry, the couple looks forward to embarking on their new venture with Dickey’s and bringing Texas-style barbecue to residents of their community.

“At Dickey’s Barbecue Pit, we pride ourselves on serving each and every guest authentic, Texas-style barbecue,” says Laura Rea Dickey, CEO of Dickey’s Barbecue Restaurants, Inc. “With new franchisees such as Rene and Gwen Bassett that truly love the brand, we can continue our growth and more importantly continue serving our guests delicious barbecue.”

As a retired military veteran, Rene and wife, Gwen, decided they wanted to open their own restaurant and after researching franchising concepts found a home in Dickey’s. “The community here in Napa needs a delicious, affordable barbecue option and we look forward to giving them just that,” says Rene. “Dickey’s is a well-established brand nationwide and we are excited to become a part of the family.”

To learn more about franchising with Dickey’s, visit Dickey’s franchising page or call 866-340-6188.

Iconic Mexican QSR lands largest franchise deal in company history

Cheyenne, WY  (RestaurantNews.comTaco John’s, the iconic and rapidly growing Mexican quick-service brand, today announced the largest development deal in company history with at least 100 new locations planned for North and South Carolina along with Georgia.

“Taco John’s has an incredible following and history of success – we continue to be impressed by the brand,” said Caleb McMillen, chief operating officer for American Development Partners.  “We can’t wait to introduce these markets to the iconic, quality food of Taco John’s. We have aggressive development plans for the next 24 to 36 months.”

Taco John’s franchisee, Superior Taco, has partnered with American Development Partners (ADP) to develop restaurants in areas including Wilmington, Myrtle Beach, Charleston, Greenville, Spartanburg, Augusta, Columbia and Savannah. Superior Taco is led by Ivan Lenoir an experienced multi-unit operator in the World of Beer franchise system who also has a legal background in commercial real estate, finance, transactions, and franchise law. American Development Partners is experienced with national brands and currently has partnerships to develop other nationally known concepts including Dog Haus, Church’s Chicken, Captain D’s and Checkers.

“The ADP team is great at...


Knoxville, TN  (  A new national survey finds most Americans agree on one thing: We need to save the planet. And that offers new opportunities for restaurants and other corporations to connect with customers.

The national survey, part of a special Eco Pulse report by Shelton Group, confirms a fundamental shift among Americans. A full 40 percent of Americans now believe “buying and using eco-friendly products is an important part of my personal image.”

“Sustainability is becoming a much stronger part of how Americans identify themselves. It’s clear that consumers want to be on the right side of this issue – and they expect the companies they buy from to be as well,” said Suzanne Shelton, President and CEO of Shelton Group, the nation’s leading marketing communications agency focused exclusively on energy and the environment.

“This presents significant opportunities for companies doing things the right way – and a threat to those that aren’t,” Shelton...

Give the gift of Hooters and earn Bonus Bucks to keep!

Atlanta, GA  (  Hooters gift cards are the most craveable stocking stuffer of the season, thanks to Hooters Bonus Bucks. For every $25 Hooters gift card purchased in-store now through Dec. 31, guests will receive an additional $5 in Hooters Bonus Bucks, redeemable on any future purchase of $25 or more. Guests can also score a free $20 gift card when they purchase a $100 gift card online at in December.

A great gift for anyone looking to start the new year off right, the 2018 Hooters Calendar features 2017 Miss Hooters International Chelsea Morgensen on the cover, as well as more than 200 stunning Hooters Girls from around the world. Hooters is also offering guests a buy one, get one free deal on select merchandise at participating Hooters locations through the end of the year.

Another way to give the gift of Hooters is also the perfect way to spice up any party this season. Hooters To Go Holiday Party Packs offer a broad sample of menu items, including 100 percent...

Baton Rouge-based brand to honor a “Walk-On of the Year” from both Florida State and Southern Mississippi Dec. 27

Baton Rouge, LA  (RestaurantNews.comWalk-On’s Bistreaux & Bar was founded by two LSU walk-ons who were determined to create a restaurant backed by traits they learned on the basketball court – hard work, dedication and a commitment to excellence.

Walk-ons are athletes that are unwilling to give up on their dream of being a college athlete. Walk-On’s Bistreaux & Bar is recognizing this hard work and dedication by honoring a “Walk-On of the Year” from the two schools playing in the 2017 Walk-On’s Independence Bowl – Florida State and Southern Miss.

The honorees will be announced after the bowl game on Dec. 27. Also at that time, the Baton Rouge-based brand will donate $12,500 each to both of the college’s General Scholarship Funds.

“Whether you’re a walk-on or a recruit, everyone on the team is needed just as much as the next guy,” said Co-Founder Brandon Landry. “I have experienced first-hand the hard work that must be done in order to earn and keep your spot on...

Longview, TX  (  Longview Mall just became an even sweeter place to shop! Nestlé® Toll House® Café by Chip® opened on Wednesday, Dec. 13, in the Longview Mall, located at 3500 McCann Road in Longview.

The kiosk café serves up freshly baked cookies, customized cookie cakes, a wide assortment of freshly baked confections, ice creams, smoothies and cold beverages. The café is also a delicious lunch option thanks to its wide array of savory offerings including crepes, paninis, wraps and flatbreads.

“Nestlé Toll House Café by Chip is a great brand and I’m so proud to introduce it to shoppers at Longview Mall,” said Franchisee Alicia Morales. “We’ve assembled a great team and we are all looking forward to becoming an integral part of the community. I invite everyone from the area to come by our beautiful new café to enjoy some of our signature, freshly baked treats.”

Longview’s first Nestlé Toll House Café by Chip is the 32nd in Texas and among more than 160 locations system-wide. The café...

The new location will open Tuesday, December 19

Ashburn, VA  (RestaurantNews.comDickey’s Barbecue Pit opens their newest location Tuesday, December 19 with four weeks of specials and giveaways, including free barbecue for a year for three lucky guests. The new location will be opened by new Dickey’s franchisee Chris Mills.

The new location will offer guests $2 Pulled Pork Sandwiches on Tuesday, December 19 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., limit two per guest.

“The Dickey family congratulates Chris on opening his first Dickey’s Barbecue Pit location,” says Laura Rea Dickey, CEO of Dickey’s Barbecue Restaurants, Inc. “We are honored to have experienced new franchisees such as Chris who are passionate about the art of great barbecue and have a love for the Dickey’s Barbecue Pit brand.”

Dickey’s will offer the following specials and giveaways for the next four weeks:

Thirsty Thursdays: Guests will receive a free Big Yellow Cup with free refills all day.

Philanthropy Fridays: “You Give, We Give” – Guests who donate to Dickey’s charitable foundation, Barbecue, Boots & Badges, will receive a gift card as a thank you for their donation. All uniformed first responders also receive 50 percent off their...