As we inch closer to the National Restaurant Association Show (NRA), we’ve been scoping out the agenda for this year’s must-sees. Of course you want to catch as much as you can, but with an estimated 2,300 companies exhibiting and a packed events schedule, you can’t see everything.
To help you make the most of it, we’ve jotted down a list of the hottest exhibits, presentations and events at this year’s NRA. Check it out!
1) The Kitchen Innovations Awards (KI Awards):
Around for over a decade, the KI Awards have a long-standing history of recognizing cutting-edge products that enhance commercial kitchens. Whether you’re interested in smart technology or energy-efficient equipment, the KI awards are an ideal opportunity to learn about can’t-miss innovations that are improving back-of-house operations.
2) Startup Alley:
Innovations in technology are revolutionizing every industry — and foodservice is no exception. Check out the new guys on the block to see how their innovative products are improving restaurant operations. These game-changing products will give you a glimpse into the future of foodservice.
3) Food & Beverage Awards (FABI Awards):
This is an opportunity to sample the year’s most delicious and unique food and beverage products, such as lemonade-infused cold brew coffee, egg rolls with a Creole twist, and bruschetta with slow-roasted yellow tomatoes. Hungry yet? As if it didn’t sound enticing enough already, you’ll have a chance to talk to representatives from the companies creating these exciting food products.
4) SuperSession: The Future of Restaurants:
This year’s signature SuperSession, The Future of Restaurants, will be a panel discussion with CEOs of the most innovative companies in the industry — from full-service dining to convenience stores. Join this session to hear insights from major players on the future of dining.
5) Innovative Product Demos:
One of the biggest benefits to this event is the opportunity to get up close and personal with the latest products from industry leaders. We’ll even be there demoing our newest equipment — our commercial-grade Krampouz Crepe Maker and multi-purpose Snack System. Stop by booth #3420 to learn about our cutting-edge technology and talk with our reps.
6) Winning at the Restaurant Business: Insights from the Top 500:
Don’t miss out on the chance to hear about where the restaurant industry is headed, and to find out about winning restaurant concepts. See how predictive analytics technology can keep you in the know by forecasting upcoming industry, menu and pricing trends.
7) Networking, Fun & Celebrations:
There’s no shortage of fun to be had at NRA after-hours events. Don’t miss out on food, drinks and festivities at the NRA’s 100th anniversary party, held at one of Chicago’s hottest restaurants. Or, network with industry colleagues over desserts at the Daily Celebrations.
8) Celebrity Chefs at NRA (Andrew Zimmerman):
Learn from your favorite pros, as celebrity chefs demonstrate their techniques across the show floor. You’ll also have a chance to meet award-winning up-and-comers and see how they’re rethinking their culinary craft.
9) Culinary Experience Center:
Not only is this a chance to learn about the latest culinary trends, but you can stop by educational sessions such as “Technology in the Kitchen: The Latest and Greatest Appliances” to get the inside scoop on must-have kitchen equipment.
10) Food Truck Social:
Okay, we admit, you’ll have to sneak outside of the actual event for this one, but who can resist a bunch of food trucks in one place? This is a good opportunity to get a taste of Chicago at the beautiful Lincoln Park Zoo. And who knows, maybe you’ll bump into other passionate foodservice colleagues for an impromptu meet and greet.
We hope to see you there!
If you’re planning to attend this year’s NRA, stop by booth #3420 and say hi! If you’re unable to attend, you can still have some fun. Stay up-to-date on the latest industry and Hatco happenings by signing up for our newsletter today!