It may be the next best thing to Captain Picard's food replicator on "Star Trek": using 3D printing technology to make meals for astronauts. NASA hopes to develop a 3D printer that can do just that, starting with the world's most popular food: pizza. The technology uses digital models to build three-dimensional objects layer by layer. For pizza, the ingredients would be dispensed in powdered form and mixed with water and oil: first the dough, then the tomato base, and finally a "meat-like protein layer" for the topping. The goal is to come up with more nutritious food for space missions to Mars and other faraway destinations.
The idea of pairing food with wine and beer is not new, but the trend is picking up steam in pizzerias as operators see how wine- and beer-pairing nights attract customers. If you serve alcohol, consider hosting a pairing night once a month, creating a pairing guide for your menu, or designing wine/beer flights that are complementary to your dishes. – Liz Barrett, PMQ editor at large
Survey: Cleanliness Top Concern to Diners
Clean means everything to restaurant customers, according to a new study from research firm Mintel. Ninety-six percent of respondents said cleanliness was the most important factor when they consider their dining options. Menu selection and variety came in second at 94%, while comfortable seating was the third most important factor at 91%. And what about coupons and special pricing? Seventy-one percent say discount deals will bring them into your restaurant.
Pizzas 4 Patriots, the non-profit organization that throws huge pizza parties for American troops overseas, is seeking help from pizzerias this year. The non-profit plans to ship out 20,000 pies and feed every American soldier in the Middle East on the 4th of July. Founder Mike Evans asks that pizzerias donate a portion of their own Independence Day sales – or, even better, a portion of sales throughout July – to support the cause. In return, they'll receive a PR packet with press releases, artwork and box toppers to publicize the promotion and earn local media coverage. Pizzas 4 Patriots' 4th of July pizza party in 2012 earned a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records for the largest pizza delivery in history.