Check out some our favorite new products from the 2016 NRA Show
PMQ sent its sales team to the National Restaurant Association Show in search of innovative—or simply delicious—new products.
Linda Green's Favorites
This is one of my favorites. The smell of freshly baked cookies is always so inviting. I believe any pizzeria could add the Salted Caramel Crunch Cookie-Pie Rave to its menu as a delicious dessert option. This sweet, salty, caramelized treat features the buttery crunch of all-natural toffee, milky white chocolate chunks, crispy pretzel bites and sea salt, all playing hopscotch across your taste buds. They come to you already baked and ready to serve.
This was an excellent find at the NRA Show. If you’re looking to improve the menu signage for your pizzeria, Impulse Guide can help. Their team of professionals— Taryn, Nicole and John—was so helpful in explaining the benefits of a content-based technology for your digital signage. The menu board is user-friendly and easy to update for daily specials. Digital signage can be a great investment to make your menu more animated and your customers more impulsive.
Marketing is such an important part of sales growth for all pizzerias. I was pleased to find this professional company that makes direct mail services easy and available for pizzeria operators. ModernPostcard.com gives you everything you need to order, print and launch your campaign and start getting results right away. I was very impressed with how user-friendly their website is. You can choose from some of their great templates or upload your own images, and you can even chat with a live person if you wish.
I enjoyed meeting up with longtime pizza industry professional Bernard Pfeiffer from Delivery Concepts. He had a solar power-assisted catering truck on display with LED lighting. The truck comes with hot, cold and frozen compartments. What a perfect fit for the pizza industry—an eye-catching vehicle with cost-saving benefits. This team of industry professionals is always coming up with new ways to strengthen the pizza industry.
Clifton Moody's Picks
This is one of my personal favorites—delicious authentic Italian ice cream and gelato from GelARTo. This company has put together a package that includes ice cream and a custom-branded display freezer, providing an affordable, cost-effective way of serving and storing your GelARTo products. You can also buy the ice cream and gelato separately if you’ve already got your own freezer. This is the perfect way to add tasty frozen desserts to your menu and increase revenue for your store.
Geo Coupon Alerts
I thought this was very impressive for the pizzeria owner who wants to connect with the community. Geo Coupon is the coupon book for your phone. It allows free advertising while helping local schools and youth groups raise funds they need for their projects. You include the coupons you want in the app, and the kids sell the app to raise money, helping to recruit new customers who will admire your efforts in helping the community. You can add, edit, manage and track your coupons through your own merchant center in real time.
I was very impressed with this product, as were the pizzeria operators I talked to at the NRA Show. RedDot Brands’ product line is centered on a core offering of the most commonly used automated and mechanical dispenser products—with a twist. Their roll towel, toilet tissue and skin-care dispensers can be purchased as standard stock items in a smoke finish, or you can customize them with color and logos to match your pizzeria’s brand. They even offer a custom mold option to take branding to the next level by changing the front cover to whatever shape you can imagine.
Shade Scapes USA
Shade Scapes USA is perfect for the upscale pizzeria or those that want to upgrade their image. It has four collections of state-of-the-art umbrellas that will turn your ordinary outdoor patio into an extraordinary one. These luxurious and elegant umbrellas bring attention to your restaurant and will certainly keep customers coming back for a great dining experience again and again.
Tom Boyles's Winners
BakerStone Pizza Oven Box
This is a neat product—it actually transforms a gas grill into an outdoor gourmet pizza oven. I like it because it has applications for doing on-site catering while also making a nice addition to any pizza maker’s back yard. The BakerStone box fits on top of either a restaurant’s charbroiler or patio grill. It is a simple and cost-effective way to expand what you can offer, and it will change the pizza game for many entrepreneurs.
Ambiance sets the mood for your customers, and what better way is there than a candlelight dinner? Bethlehem Lights launched its flameless candles at the NRA Show, and they were so realistic that I had to look twice. There are no flames for kids to start a table fire, nothing to light or extinguish at the end of the night—just perfect table lighting. They are remote-capable, have extended battery life and are also available in a plug-in version for those who do not want to mess with batteries.
Italian beef is all the rage, but if you don’t know how to make great Italian beef yourself, Devanco Foods can do it for you. They also offer gyros, meat products, Giardiniera, Italian sausage, pita breads and many other high-quality products. These precooked and portion-controlled products are available in many different sizes. Trust me, this food is so good, I almost ate all of their samples at the show.
Shaved Ice Distributors
Looking for a unique dessert to offer customers any time of the year? When they see what Shaved Ice Distributors can add to your menu, they will start talking. Their Shaved Snow Ice has a smooth, velvety texture and is often topped with fresh fruit. Shaved Snow is similar to “snow ice” desserts, with the major difference being in the content of the toppings added to the ice and the presentation.