Food and Drink International - Winter 2016 Volume 2 - 109

Eddie Merlot's
The interior of the restaurant will retain Eddie Merlot's
signature contemporary open look, which utilizes light
woods such as maple and cherry, stained glass and backlit
onyx stone.
The innovation in design is matched by innovation on the
menu. In August, the company introduced 5- and 7-ounce
versions of a Wagyu Filet, which comes from Wylarah
Wagyu cattle raised in Australia and has a marble score
of greater than 9. The balance of marbling and lean meat
earned Wylarah Wagyu grand champion honors at the 2015
World Wagyu Forum. "We are the only exclusive steakhouse
in America that can get that beef," Humphries says.
Customers are eager to try the highly acclaimed steaks.
In the first full month, Eddie Merlot's restaurants sold more
than a half-million dollars of Wylarah Wagyu filets. "It's a
high price point and we're selling a ton of it right now," Humphries says.
The updated menu and new look represent the realization
of Humphries' original vision for a restaurant that blended
elegant design, exquisite cuisine and impeccable hospitality. Those values have grown the company to 12 locations in
eight states.
This success comes from Eddie Merlot's understanding
of its audience. Even as gender roles become equalized,
women are still seen as the primary decision-makers in the
household. Women make 85 percent of consumer purchases,
according to Greenfield Online for Arnold's Women's Insight
Team, and Humphries says 65 percent of women make the
decision on where to eat. Eddie Merlot takes care to appeal
directly to its female customers. Restaurants feature 75 wines
by the glass, robust dessert menus, more seafood options
and smaller cuts of steak, and even custom seating designed
to be more comfortable for women.
The concept has proven flexible, able to evolve with its
customers even as its core stays the same. Regardless of
what new meats are added to the menu or how the dining
room changes, Eddie Merlot's will remain a place for professionals who want to be seen and foodie lovers who want to
enjoy the work of the industry's most talented chefs.

Staff Support
Great suppliers are only part of the recipe for great dishes.
Finding high-quality chefs and managers is a challenge in
C&T Design and Equipment Co., Inc. Since 1971, C&T Design has been a
premier provider of foodservice design and equipment supply serving all
commercial foodservice operations. Joining the Eddie Merlot's team in 2010,
we drew upon our expertise to redesign an existing restaurant to meet the
needs of their Burr Ridge location. Since the completion of that project we
have provided foodservice design, equipment and furniture specification and
procurement, as well as project management services on all of the locations
they have built.

food & drink international * winter 2016 volume 2 * www.fooddrink-magazine.com

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Food and Drink International - Winter 2016 Volume 2

Contents
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