Filed under: Restaurants

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‘Overwhelming’ number turn out for 800 McJobs

Thousands of Chicagoans flooded McDonald’s stores Tuesday, hoping to land one of 800 local McJobs.

The hiring day culminated a weeks-long advertising and public-relations campaign for the burger giant’s plans to hire 50,000 store-level employees nationwide. Get the full story »

Emil’s closes; owner blames Wacker construction

The bar area of Emil's Bar and Grille, which is now closed. (Photo via Emil's website)

Emil’s Bar and Grille, a longtime fixture on Wacker Drive for business lunches and pre-opera dinners, closed last week, a victim of the massive reconstruction of the aging street, according to its owner.

John Boutzarelos blamed the construction for reducing Emil’s business 30 percent to 40 percent since the project started in January. He said the white-tablecloth restaurant started to lose money. Get the full story »

McDonald’s makes push to hire 50,000 today

Along with the Big Breakfast and Big Macs, McDonald’s Corp. has 50,000 new jobs on its national menu today.

Fifteen-hundred of those jobs are being offered in the Chicago area. Jobs to be offered in the U.S. range from restaurant crew to salaried management. Get the full story »

McDonald’s grimaces at Happy Meal lawsuit

A lawsuit that seeks to stop McDonald’s from selling Happy Meals should be dismissed because parents can always prohibit their children from consuming the food, the hamburger giant said in a court filing on Monday.

The lawsuit claims McDonald’s unfairly uses toys to lure children into its restaurants. The plaintiff, Monet Parham — a Sacramento, Calif. mother of two — claims the company’s advertising violates California consumer protection laws. Get the full story »

Lawsuit challenging Taco Bell beef dropped

Attorneys this week dropped a lawsuit that alleged that Taco Bell’s beef was mostly not beef, both sides of the once-contentious legal battle said.

Alabama-based law firm Beasley Allen brought the class-action lawsuit in January and claimed that lab tests had shown that the eatery’s beef was actually only 35 percent beef. The plaintiffs said they wanted the fast food restaurant to stop referring to its products as beef. Get the full story »

Burger King franchisees drop $1 cheeseburger suit

Burger King Corp.’s U.S. franchisees agreed to dismiss a lawsuit over $1 cheeseburgers, and will gain more power to set prices for the fast food restaurant chain’s cheaper items. Get the full story »

Subway cuts sodium in sandwiches 15-28%

(Bill Hogan/Chicago Tribune)

Subway sandwiches just got a little less salty.

The restaurant chain said Monday that it has reduced sodium levels in its sandwiches by 15 percent across the board, while its Fresh Fit sandwich line gets a 28 percent reduction. Get the full story »

Dunkin’ hires JPMorgan, Barclays to lead IPO

A busy morning at the Dunkin' Donuts franchise in the village of Posen. (Zbigniew Bzdak/Tribune)

Dunkin’ Brands Inc. has hired J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. and Barclays PLC to lead an initial public offering of its Dunkin’ Donuts unit this summer, CNBC’s Kate Kelly reported Thursday, without citing sources.

The IPO would seek to raise between $500 million and $700 million, she said. Get the full story »

McDonald’s franchisee rises 25% in debut

Shares of Arcos Dorados Holdings, a large South American franchisee of fast-food chain McDonald’s, rose 27 percent in their stock market debut as investors clamored for exposure to the famous brand in a region with booming consumer spending. Get the full story »

Another toddler served alcohol at restaurant

ORLANDO — A 2-year-old boy was accidentally served sangria instead of orange juice at a Lakeland Olive Garden last month, prompting Orlando-based Darden Restaurants to caution its employees to be more careful with alcoholic drinks.

Earlier this week, a toddler was mistakenly given a small amount of alcohol at a Detroit-area Applebee’s restaurant — because a mixed drink was mislabeled as apple juice. Get the full story »

McDonald’s scraps commercial in Philippines

U.S. fast-food chain McDonald’s Corp. said Wednesday it had scrapped a television commercial in the devoutly Catholic Philippines after facing a barrage of criticism from church leaders. Get the full story »

McDonald’s listed among top hourly employers

McDonald’s Corp. and 11 other companies were tapped Tuesday by Working Mother magazine as the best companies for hourly employees in 2011. Get the full story »

Wendy’s hopes to beat McDonald’s in fry game

Wendy's natural-cut fries debuted in November. (Wendy's/Arby's)

Wendy’s/Arby’s Group Inc. is standing up to its biggest burger rival, McDonald’s Corp., by putting its marketing dollars toward gaining more french fry market share. By changing its recipe to differ more from McDonald’s french fries, Wendy’s is choosing to compete by being unique, rather than solely by trying to be better.

“French fries are a significant part of our menu,” said Ken Calwell, Wendy’s chief marketing officer. “And it’s so hard to have something unique and different, that still tastes good, in the fast-food industry. So, we see the new fries as a huge opportunity for us.” Get the full story »

McDonald’s Skinner gets $9.7M in 2010

McDonald’s Corp. Chief Executive Jim Skinner received a total of $9.7 million in compensation in 2010, including his roughly $42,000 annual salary increase and a 38 percent increase in his annual performance bonus. Get the full story »

McDonald’s Japanese sales fall 7.3% after quake

The Japanese unit of McDonald’s Corp. said Friday that same store sales in March declined 7.3 percent on year, falling short of year-earlier levels for the first time in four months due to the massive earthquake and tsunami that struck northeast Japan. Get the full story »