The Nyman Group of Scottsdale, AZ & Las Vegas, NV and Robert Rippe & Associates of Minnetonka, MN, have been selected as the winners of the International Hotel, Motel + Restaurant Show’s 2014 Foodservice Pioneering Concept. The foodservice consulting groups’ “BOWLS—Food That’s Good For You!” concept will be built to a scaled working model on the exhibit floor during the IHMRS, November 9-11, and will host demonstrations throughout the Show.
“IHMRS attendees are not only looking for innovative products and equipment, but also for edgy concepts and engaging ideas to wow customers,” said Phil Robinson, IHMRS Show Director. “In the eyes of the judges, BOWLS best achieved the competition objective of developing a retail foodservice concept that can succeed in an under-used, non-traditional location not specifically outfitted to foodservice.”
BOWLS is a 500-square-foot, quick service style, healthy and natural foods concept offering hormone- and nitrate-free ingredients with no additives. Included are bowl bases such as gluten-free noodles, brown rice, quinoa or warm lavosh to which are added proteins, seasonal vegetables and other ingredients to order.
According to Robert J. Nyman, President, The Nyman Group Ltd., “BOWLS is a personalized experience, allowing guests to create their meal based upon flavors, emotions, personal preferences, allergies and time of day. The service line is non-linear, and chefs guide the guests through the various ingredients, offering tastes and explanations about where food is from and its nutritional value, while preparing each personalized BOWL.”
The competition judges also complimented BOWLS’ commitment to technology — a 100% wireless, Wi-Fi based operation — and to sustainability. The concept includes plant-based disposable serviceware, flatware and beverage cups. If designed for actual operation, the concept also would include a full recycling program encompassing waste water, trash and food waste for composting. BOWLS has a living wall of fresh herbs, hydroponically grown with recycled water, which chefs access as they prepare food. Freestanding locations would use a bank of solar panels on the roof, designed to capture energy and further minimize BOWLS’ environmental impact. BOWLS elicited many comments from judges, including:
“The concept addresses the need for a healthy, affordable and convenient dining experience with a unique approach. Concept is very interactive with personal attention to customer needs. It addresses a wide array of sustainability issues and incorporates a number of technologies.”
“Good menu selection, environmentally sound, and socially responsible. A strong 21st century concept.”
“BOWLS is very cutting-edge in terms of concept and menu. Designers made thoughtful use of materials and were spot-on for allergen-free selections on the menu.”
Judges for the 2014 Foodservice Pioneering Concept were Michael Atanasio – Overlook Hospital; Melanie Corey-Ferrini – DYNAMIK Space (The 2013 Foodservice Pioneering Concept winner); James Dale – Grand Hyatt New York; Robert Doland – Jacobs, Doland & Beer; Maura Doran – New York Methodist Hospital; Mark LoParco – University of Montana, Geoffrey Mills – Crowne Plaza Times Square Manhattan; and Tracy Nieporent – The Myriad Restaurant Group.
Second Place in the 2014 competition was awarded to “Al Dente” by A’La Carte Foodservice Consulting Group, Houston, TX, and Third Place went to Cafebellas (formerly named, Healthy Foods Coffee & Tea Co) by Steven Cote, Winnetka, IL. Graphic illustrations for both projects also will be on display at IHMRS 2014.