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Keeping up with the Kitchen Trends

Creating innovative menu offerings is the backbone of fast casual industry success, but it often requires brands to embrace new trends in kitchen equipment in order to produce those must-have items.

Whether it’s investing in new equipment to serve more innovative offerings, adopting equipment that can perform multiple functions or simply adding more attractive equipment seen by customers via open kitchens and front-of-house prep stations, restaurateurs must be up on all the latest kitchen trends.

This session will not only uncover those trends but will also weigh the pros and cons of kitchen upgrades and discuss how to get the most out of your equipment budget.


Adam Baird | Executive Chef | The Habit Burger Grill

Speaker bio coming soon!

Drew French | Founder & President | Your Pie

Drew French is the Founder and President of Your Pie. While honeymooning on the Italian island of Ischia, Drew was inspired to bring the authentic, brick-oven taste of Italian pizza to the United States. With a passion for gourmet food and a business degree from the University of Georgia, French opened the first Your Pie location in Athens, Ga., in 2008. The brand has since grown to more than 50 locations across the U.S., and French continues to infuse creativity, inspiration and innovation through his leadership. Drew’s culinary brainchild, the fan-favorite Peach Prosciutto Pie, earned him a lifetime spot on the U.S. Pizza team.

David Jones | CEO & Co-Founder | Blazing Onion

David Jones is the CEO & Co-Founder of the Blazing Onion, opening his 1st Blazing Onion in March of ’07 in the Greater Seattle Market. He is married to Lorri Jones, his CFO & Business Partner. The Blazing Onion profiles both a fast-casual plus restaurant as well as our full service Sports & Whiskey Lounges, making them a hybrid in the evolving fast casual segment. The menu is about all natural fresh local ingredients with recipes made from scratch at each individual location. They have been recognized by QSR magazine as “Ones to Watch” and ranked #25 by Fast Casual magazine in its “Top 100, Mover’s and Shakers”.

Aaron Noveshen | Founder & President | Starbird & Culinary Edge Ventures

A graduate of UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, Aaron Noveshen is an award-winning chef and restaurant entrepreneur. He is the Founder and President of The Culinary Edge, an innovation agency that provides global companies with strategic food, brand and operations solutions. Aaron is also the Founder and President of Starbird, a modern chicken concept that is revolutionizing food and convenience in the QSR/Fast Casual marketplace. As Co-founder of Pacific Catch Restaurants, Aaron served as president for 10 years and currently serves on the board of directors. Most recently Aaron co-founded The Culinary Edge Ventures with the mission to create, incubate, operate and grow restaurant brands.


Missy Wolfe | Product Line Manager | Taylor Company

Missy Wolfe is the Product Line Manager at the Taylor Company. Taylor® Company is a leading foodservice equipment manufacturer dedicated to delivering superior equipment and extraordinary customer service. Located in Rockton, Illinois, Taylor® Company offers everything from frozen beverage and soft serve machines to commercial grills. Setting the pace for foodservice professionals since 1926, Taylor equipment is supported by the global Taylor Distributor network to provide quality equipment, powerful programs and unparalleled support. Missy has been with Taylor since 2010. In her tenure, she and her colleagues have delivered numerous equipment offerings to the marketplace with the goal of delighting our customers!

session sponsor