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Chipotle testing queso offering

According to Eater, Chipotle is unveiling its only public-facing test kitchen in New York on Monday, called Chipotle NEXT Kitchen. On deck: a classic margarita and virgin strawberry variety, a salad with avocado citrus dressing and queso.

>> Read more trending news

That’s right. Queso, which the Mexican fast casual chain just previously said would not appear on its menu anytime soon due to the artificial ingredients needed to make the liquid gold suitable for a service line. That cheesy dip is the most requested item that’s not on Chipotle’s menu, Eater New York reported. In a Chipotle internal memo quoted by Eater, the restaurant’s CEO, Steve Ells, told employees Monday that the lack of queso has lead to lost business.

>> Related: Here's why Chipotle doesn't sell queso

To be clear: This does not mean that queso is headed to your local Chipotle, as it’s currently only available at the test kitchen. However, if you’ve held your queso dreams close to your burrito-eating heart, it’s certainly cause for optimism.

Chick-fil-A introduces new gluten-free bun

In response to customer requests, Chick-fil-A announced the addition of a new gluten-free bun option to its menu, making it one of the first fast food restaurants to offer the item.

>> Read more trending news 

The 150-calorie bun, made with premium ingredients like quinoa and amaranth and lightly sweetened with molasses and raisins, is now available in restaurants nationwide, according to a company news release.

>> Related: Chick-fil-A adds new sandwich, lemonade to summer menu

It comes individually packaged and can be ordered with any Chick-fil-A sandwich for an additional $1.15.

The company tested the option in three U.S. cities in 2016 and found the bun to be the most commonly ordered item with the grilled chicken sandwich and grilled chicken deluxe sandwich.

“Our hope is that the gluten-free bun addition opens up options for gluten-sensitive customers to enjoy more of our menu, Leslie Neslage, senior consultant of menu development at Chick-fil-A, said.

Gluten-free items are most commonly consumed by people with celiac disease, an autoimmune disorder in which the body mistakenly reacts to gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley and rye, as if it were a poison.

Click here to read more information on the gluten-free bun and other gluten-free options at Chick-fil-A.

World's first Nutella Cafe opening in Chicago

The Nutella counter at the Chicago Eataly hub has enjoyed success, and the company has decided to erect a flagship Nutella Cafe in Chicago, just across from Millennium Park Plaza, on May 31.

A representative from Nutella told Chicago Eater that the two-story bar will be “the first to truly capture the essence of the Nutella brand -- not just in the dishes that’ll be served, but in the full experience.”

>> Read more trending news

The cafe will be two levels and will branch out from the bar at Eataly.

In addition to Nutella products, the location will serve soups, salads and paninis. The Chicago Nutella Cafe will also serve breakfast, lunch, dinner, gelato, crepes and espresso, according to Eater.

>> Related: An Italian deli institution of Chicago is sadly shutting its doors after nearly 70 years

While Chicago will have the world’s first Nutella Cafe, the company has similar locations all over the world, including a shop in Palestine and kiosks in Sao Paulo.

According to their website, Nutella originated in 1946 when a shortage of cocoa supplies after the second World War caused an inventive pastry maker in Italy to begin using hazelnuts in his spreads. Today, the company is worth billions of dollars.

Chick-fil-A adds new sandwich, lemonade to summer menu

Chick-fil-A is offering its customers the savory tastes of a backyard barbecue with two new summer menu items.

>> Read more trending news

The Atlanta-based fast food chain introduced its new Smokehouse BBQ Bacon Sandwich and Watermelon Mint Lemonade on Monday. The summer sandwich and beverage will be rolled out nationwide at all Chick-fil-A locations today through Aug. 19.

The barbecue sandwich includes up Chick-fil-A’s signature grilled chicken with bacon glazed in a brown sugar pepper blend and Colby Jack cheese on a Hawaiian-style bun, topped with a smokehouse barbecue sauce. The 500-calorie sandwich costs $5.59 before tax.

The new minty beverage, which Chick-fil-A suggests pairing with the Smokehouse BBQ Bacon Sandwich, adds watermelon and mint flavors to the chain’s beloved fresh-squeezed lemonade at 200 calories. A small drink costs $1.85 and is also available in a diet variety.

Chick-fil-A backs its new seasonal sandwich up with science, reporting more than 95 percent of U.S. consumers like barbecue.

“We know our customers love the flavors of our grilled menu, and we are excited to offer two items this season that will give them something new to try,” David Farmer, Chick-fil-A vice president of menu strategy and development, said in a news release.

The Smokehouse BBQ Bacon Sandwich “was incredibly popular in test markets. I hope our customers are as excited as I am to get this kind of high-quality sandwich at the drive-thru,” Farmer said. “We hope customers will enjoy the new ingredients and flavor combinations in our Smokehouse BBQ Bacon Sandwich and Watermelon Mint Lemonade all summer long.”

>> Four Atlanta restaurants are the 'best barbecue joints in America,' according to ranking

Chick-fil-A added another limited-time menu item in March when it introduced the Frosted Strawberry Lemonade, a spin on the Frosted Lemonade, which the company introduced in 2015. The Frosted Strawberry Lemonade, described by Chick-fil-A as a “seasonal twist on a customer favorite,” is a combination of Chick-fil-A’s signature lemonade, the vanilla Icedream and strawberry purée. It’s being offered nationwide through May 20.

Brianna Chambers contributed to this report. 

Chipotle to debut first dessert

Chipotle plans to add a dessert item to its menu this year.

The Denver-based Mexican grill announced Tuesday it will begin testing a fried dough dessert next month, Business Insider reported

>> Read more trending news

Chipotle’s buñuelos, a traditional Mexican dessert, are fried tortillas sprinkled with honey, cinnamon and sugar. They’re to be served with caramel-apple dipping sauce.

“It’s simple to make and requires us to add just a few additional ingredients,” Chipotle CEO Steve Ells said, according to Yahoo. “They’re delicious and complement our menu nicely.”

It’s unclear which locations nationwide will offer the dessert first. 

Although Chipotle announced last year that it would be adding a dessert item to the menu, the buñuelo comes as a surprise, as many speculated the restaurant chain would debut churros as its first dessert.Chipotle is known for being slow to change its menu. According to Business Insider, the addition of buñuelos will be the company’s third major change in 20 years.

The most recent addition was chorizo, which Chipotle began offering in October. 

The company also announced that sales at restaurants that have been open at least a year rose 17.8 percent in the first quarter, and revenue increased 28.1 percent to $1.07 billion. Chipotle’s stock rose, and Ells said the increases indicates a “strong start” to the year.

>> Related: Here's why Chipotle doesn't sell queso

Woman finds cow lip in tacos

A Texas woman found what she thought were teeth in barbacoa tacos ordered at El Rincon, a restaurant in Pflugerville.

According to San Antonio’s KENS, Courtney Aguilar took to Facebook to share a picture of the tacos, saying, “When you order barbacoa tacos, but get teeth instead.”

Aguilar wrote that she asked a restaurant server if she was seeing teeth in her food, and the server responded, “baby teeth.”

What she was seeing was actually cow lips.

>> Read more trending news

The restaurant responded to Aguilar’s claim on Facebook, saying they get their barbacoa from a vendor. The vendor in turn responded clarifying that what the woman saw was actually cow lips.

“Barbacoa is one the few items that we buy pre-made from an approved FDA vendor, and we are no longer going to buy from that vendor,” the post reads. “Barbacoa is cooked with different parts of the cow, but mostly from the head or cheek of cattle. El Rincon will stop selling barbacoa until we get a new vendor.”

“The reality is this: Barbacoa is a rough business. It starts with a whole skinned cow’s head, wrapped in burlap and baling wire and buried in a smoking hole in the ground overnight,” the San Antonio Express News’ food writer Mike Sutter wrote. “In the morning, somebody with a sledgehammer opens up that skull and the harvesting begins: all the fatty and lean soft tissue from lip to crown. Sometimes the brains, sometimes the eyes, sometimes the tongue if it’s not being held out for lengua.”

Starbucks locations to begin serving ice cream treat

Starbucks is switching things up by adding an offering to menus at select locations across the country. 

>> Read more trending stories  

The coffee giant will sell a new dessert in more than 100 stores, Business Insider reported. Ten "upscale" stores in Los Angeles, Boston and Washington, DC., will be the first locations to provide the new Roastery Affogato menu, which offers the frozen treat, according to Business Insider. 

The menu item, inspired by affogatos, an Italian coffee-based dessert, is a scoop of ice cream topped with a shot of espresso.

Versions of the affogato on the Roastery Affogato menu will range from $6 to $8.50.

Starbucks is also testing a less expensive affogato menu at 100 store locations in Orange County, California, according to Business Insider. 

Starbucks' Seattle Roastery started offering affogatos to its customers last summer.

Starbucks will start serving ice cream at more than 100 stores https://t.co/zifj2AqaYL pic.twitter.com/ESzc941cn5— Business Insider (@businessinsider) February 14, 2017

'Top Chef' alum shares pro-immigrant message on restaurant receipts

In the wake of President Donald Trump's controversial travel ban, a former "Top Chef" contestant and U.S. immigrant from New Zealand is using his restaurant receipts to share a pro-immigrant message with customers.

"Immigrants make America great (they also cooked your food and served you today)," read the receipts from New York eatery Kiwiana, owned by Mark Simmons.

>> Read more trending news

According to CNN, the move by Simmons, who appeared on the fourth season of Bravo's "Top Chef," gained national attention Sunday after journalist Mary Emily O'Hara posted a photo of her receipt on social media.

"Breakfast in Brooklyn," she captioned her tweet, which had been shared nearly 100,000 times by Thursday morning.

>> Check it out here

Breakfast in Brooklyn pic.twitter.com/JHEtfJhqPO— Mary Emily O'Hara (@MaryEmilyOHara) February 5, 2017 <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

How to get free Krispy Kreme doughnuts all month long

It’s “Freebruary” at Krispy Kreme this month, meaning you have a chance to get a free doughnut all month long.

>> Read more trending stories  

Buy a cup of the new "Smooth" or "Rich" brews and get a free original glazed doughnut every time you visit until Feb. 28.

Both blends are made from 100 percent Arabica beans. Krispy Kreme recommends you choose the “Smooth” blends for subtle and easy drinking and “Rich” for a more bold experience.

>> Shaquille O'Neal buys Krispy Kreme store

“We have completely reinvented Krispy Kreme coffee from the bean to the cup, ensuring our customers’ beverage experience delivers the fresh quality and taste you always get from Krispy Kreme Doughnuts,” Jackie Woodward, chief marketing officer of Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, said in a news release. “Our new Smooth coffee is the only coffee designed to be the perfect complement to Krispy Kreme’s freshly-made Original Glazed doughnuts and other treats. It’s a combination that’s deliciously inseparable, and we’re proud to say that our coffee is now doughnut-worthy.”

The offer cannot be combined with any other coupons and is valid at participating locations only.

Buy any size and get a FREE Original Glazed 2/6 thru 2/28 (US/CAN) Details- https://t.co/xK7ziSUAHe #Freebruary #KrispyKremeCoffee pic.twitter.com/NVv22NCDCd— krispykreme (@krispykreme) February 6, 2017

Single? Hooters has a deal that'll get you free wings on Valentine's Day

Whether you've recently experienced a dramatic, emotionally exhausting breakup or an amicable separation from a recent boyfriend or girlfriend, Hooters wants to show its loyal customers some love and appreciation. 

>> Read more trending stories  

The popular restaurant is giving away free wings to anyone who destroys a picture of his or her ex on Valentine's Day.

All you have to do is answer four easy questions and the restaurant will recommend shredding, burning, burying or throwing darts at a photo of your former partner.

>> Hooters to open Hoots, new restaurant with male servers

Complete the task online and get a coupon for 10 free boneless wings with the purchase of 10 at a participating Hooters restaurant on Valentine's Day only. Customers also have the option of shredding the photo in person at participating locations, which will use a shredding machine to ruin pictures, according to Thrillist.

Best way to get over your ex: Shred 'em and Forget 'em! https://t.co/Su1k7NEVvB #ShredYourEx pic.twitter.com/QZ6uSrc2cp— Hooters (@Hooters) February 6, 2017

 

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