Restaurant News Bites: Arby’s, Applebee’s, Chipotle

Restaurant News Bites: Arby's, Applebee's, ChipotleArby’s restaurants are celebrating the chain’s 47th year of operation by offering an original Roast Beef Sandwich for just .64 with the purchase of a medium drink. Guests who want to take advantage of the one day only offer must print out a coupon found on the company’s Facebook page. The event will take place this Saturday, July 23rd.

Expion, a new social media marketing company, has been helping some of the largest Applebee’s franchisees engage local customers. The company created hundreds of new Facebook pages for individual restaurant locations, each with their own special promotions. This also helped the franchisee companies monitor and research customer requests and satisfaction.

New research shows that overall seafood consumption in restaurants is down, according to the NPD Group, but this is mostly driven by economic reasons and not health concerns. Fried seafood consumption especially dropped but non-fried dishes are being ordered more often now. Seafood entree sales have been dropping slowly since 2007.

Groupon may have been one of the first social couponing websites to offer deals to diners who all went in together on the discount, but the popular service has spawned plenty of competitors. These websites help diners find deals in their area by requesting a zip code or city. The services work with local restaurant owners to create discounts that bring in new diners.

Americans across the country all love fast food and convenience it provides. However, there are 10 top cities that consume more fries and hamburgers than the rest. Plano, Texas isn’t that large, but the city spends 2.3 times the national average each year on fast food. Madison, Wisconsin came in second and San Francisco, California came in nearly last at 91.

Chipotle Mexican Grill announced its second quarter earnings for 2011 and is showing some improvements over the last quarter. Total revenue increased by over 22% and comparable restaurant sales rose by 10%. The chain also saw a 9% increase in the net income, reaching a total of $50.7 million dollars.

The Taco Bell Foundation, the charitable arm of the Taco Bell chain owned by Yum! Brands, has started their new Graduate to Go Internship Program. Six teenagers were hired from the Boys and Girls Club to learn about the wide variety of career opportunities available to them over the next three months. The teens will visit the company’s headquarters and will receive $10,000 scholarships.

Freebirds World Burrito, a new restaurant chain that combines flavors from across the globe with fresh salads and burritos, is expanding again. Two new locations will open shortly in the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area. The first opens on July 21 and the second will celebrate its grand opening on July 27th. Each restaurant added approximately 75 jobs to the community.

Rodizio Grill of Utah has developed a new Days of 47 promotional event that gives customers two choices for a discounted $47 four course meal. Guests can also enjoy two fresh glasses of Rodizio’s limeade for just $4.70. The restaurant is encouraging other dining establishments in the state to create their own Days of 47 events.

Dickey’s Barbecue Pit is America’s fastest growing national barbecue chain. To celebrate its rapid expansion the chain’s newest location in Pennsylvania will give away a free year’s supply of barbecue to the first guest through the door on July 21st. Everyone else can enjoy $1 barbecue sandwiches until 1 pm.