Flavor Trends, Strategies and Solutions for Menu Development

Flavor Trends from the Modern Steakhouse: Part 1 6 Ideas on maximizing premium cuts

Cuban-style roast pork tenderloin sliders are an on-trend menu idea for premium protein
PHOTO CREDIT: Hatfield Premium Reserve

Cross utilization is a way of life in profitable professional kitchens. With shrinking food margins and increasing labor issues, finding clever ways to cross-utilize premium cuts of protein becomes an even bigger imperative. We tapped two innovators in the steak house space: chefs Cliff Pleau with Outback Steakhouse and Fleming’s Prime Steak and Michael Slavin of Houlihan’s Restaurant Support Center, asking them to share creative, modern ways to cross-utilize premium cuts of protein.

3 Ideas from Cliff Pleau, Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse

Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar

Cliff Pleau, VP R&D for Outback Steakhouse and Fleming’s Prime Steak, shares three trend-forward cross-utilization ideas for premium proteins

Start with:
Crispy pork shank for two, jalepeño grits, cherry-rhubarb compote
Cross-utilize into:
Goat cheese ravioli in pork bone hock broth, aged Jack cheese, sage butter

Start with:
Grilled prime filet, Boursin pepper butter, marble potatoes
Cross-utilize into:
Seared tenderloin carpaccio, mustard seed aïoli, caper crisps, pumpernickel toast

Start with:
Charcoal-roasted pork tenderloin over grilled romaine Caesar salad
Cross-utilize into:
Open faced pork banh mi sandwich with a fried egg on top

Entice With Premium Proteins

KNIFE

Knife in Dallas, offers steakhouse classics cooked over red-oak wood fire, but extends its premium proteins into its smaller-bite Slabs and Slices menu sections, with options like a Knife Charcuterie tasting and Bacon Jam Sloppy Joes sliders

With today’s menus often emphasizing shareables, snacks and bar bites, the opportunity for cross-utilizing premium protein in a steakhouse setting—or any other full-service concept—is significant. High-impact ingredients like premium proteins make for a memorable restaurant experience. At Hugo’s Frog Bar, with three locations in Chicagoland and one in Philadelphia, the filet mignon also appears on its bar bites menu as a slider, served with maître d’hôtel butter. Knife, a modern steakhouse in Dallas, keys into the brunch boom, enticing diners with more casual, yet still premium items like a Cuban Sandwich, with pork belly, ham, Swiss, avocado spread and Dijon.

3 Ideas from Michael Slavin, Houlihan’s

Michael Slavin, VP Culinary & Menu Innovation for Houlihan’s Restaurant Support Center, shares three trend-forward cross-utilization ideas for premium proteins

Start with:
Rack of pork spit-roasted on a rotisserie
Cross-utilize into:
Remove from the bone and make hot roast pork sandwiches with garlicky kale as a verbal special

Start with:
Porchetta roulades
Cross-utilize into:
Kansas City steak soup or a smoked rib hash as a brunch item

Start with:
Whole-muscle prime rib
Cross-utilize into:
Intensely flavored grilled cheese with porchetta and pan-roasted lemon broccolini

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