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Greene King bid for Spirit would create UK's biggest pub group (21/10/2014)

Pub group Spirit have shown an increased willingness to recommend Greene King's latest acqusiition bid offer to shareholders.  A successful bid would create the largest pub group in the UK, with total sales exceeding £2bn and operating around 1,800 managed pubs, almost double that of JD Wetherspoon.

Spirit's brands Fayre & Square and Flaming Grill Pubs would be joining the Hungry Horse estate, creating a 400-strong value-led pub chain.  Other portfolio synergies could be found between Metropolitan pubs and Taylor Walker.  


Eataly confirms UK opening (16/10/2014)

Upmarket Italian food market and restaurant concept, Eataly, will open in London in 2016.  The brand will open within the Selfridges department store on Oxford Street.

Eataly, with the motto 'alti cibi', translating to 'high food', offers high quality artisanal Italian produce and a range of in-store Italian restaurants and bars.  The concept was founded in Turin in 2003 by Oscar Farinetti, and currently operates 27 sites around the world including New York, Tokyo and Dubai.


Yates's launches new menu with heavy street food influences (15/10/2014)

Yates's has launched a new breakfast, lunch and dinner menu with heavy street food influences and customisation options.  The menu is to be offered across the pub restaurant brand's core estate.

The new menu is influenced by American cuisine, with breakfast choices including pancakes and lunchtime options an American style sharing platter, with Carolina glazed pork and Southern fried chicken.  Lower calorie options include Thai yellow curry.  The new menu is yet another example of how street food is becoming increasingly influential in the casual fining sector, both in and outside London.


GBK launches 15 minute menu (14/10/2014)

Gourmet Burger Kitchen have released a new 15 minute lunch menu, coinciding with the opening of their new restaurant in Aylesbury.  The menu will be launched across all 60 outlets in the UK.

GBK's new menu includes a 4oz burger and fries for £5.95, served in 15 minutes.  If the meal does not arrive within 15 minutes, the customer's next meal will be free.  The new menu improves the chain's all-day dining offer, an ability which is becoming increasingly important in the sector.  The 15 minute lunch menu will allow the chain to compete with the speedy lunch hour offerings of new fast food concepts such as Leon.


Domino's to extend alcohol sales trials (10/10/2014)

At least a dozen Domino's sites are extending trials of alcohol sales with takeaway pizzas.  Selected branches, including St Helens are currently selling Budweiser for £2.49 a bottle, Peroni for £2.99 a bottle and Blossom Hill wines for £7.99.

Domino's are planning to extend the trail to Newbury which is causing controversy in the town.  Town councillors are concerned that the scheme will be misused to facilitate underage drinking.  However, the scheme has huge potential to increase profit margins and sales if it were rolled out over the chain's 777 outlets.


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