If you've ever eaten at California Pizza Kitchen, then chances are you've tried the restaurant's most signature menu item, its BBQ chicken pizza. The unconventional pie, which was introduced at the opening of CPK's Beverly Hills restaurant in 1985, became instantly popular and opened the door to the idea of nontraditional toppings on a pizza crust. While the all-American combination of sweet and spicy barbecued chicken, gooey cheese, and hearty pizza crust has been copied all over the world, we went behind the scenes at CPK's test kitchen to learn exactly what goes into the original. See how it's made, and then get the recipe.
Question: What happens when the small plates phenomenon catches on across America? Answer: The craze extends far beyond the reach of Spanish tapas restaurants, and into national chains like California Pizza Kitchen. This month, the casual dining spot unveiled a new menu, Small Cravings, with seven modestly sized (and priced) snacks to choose from. Anywhere from $4.50 to $7 can get you a moderate portion of buffalo chicken, fried artichoke hearts, a wedge salad, and ravioli. But how did they fare? We put them to the test. Read on for our favorites.
Who wants a greasy pack of minced white meat and a germ-infested ball pit when mama can have a civilized healthy dinner with her tiny diners instead? Ditch the drive thru and go to these fun family hot spots for affordable and easy together time. Other patrons won't mind a lil ruckus, and the menus actually cater to wee ones. Check out the eateries and tell me which one suits your fancy best.
These days, chain restaurants are looking for any way to eke out a profit, from offering cheaper steaks to haggling with customers. But given the economic downturn, many are no longer expecting to fill tabletops at dinner — instead, they're counting on customers at the grocery store. Restaurants from Jamba Juice to California Pizza Kitchen and even Tony Roma's plan to introduce new licensed food products in the next year. Yesterday, Starbucks unveiled its new Super-Premium Ice Cream. The new line of ice cream, created in partnership with Unilever, is inspired by coffeehouse drinks with flavors like caramel macchiato and java chip.
Healthy drink chain Jamba Juice has been sorting through production and logistics on a ready-to-drink smoothie made by Nestle that will be carried in convenience stores in addition to supermarkets. Certain chains that already have licensed, branded items in grocery stores are looking to aggressively expand them. California Pizza Kitchen recently introduced flatbread sandwiches made in partnership with Kraft, and the company plans to expand its product line. Rib specialist Tony Roma's is also broadening its line of heat-and-serve meals beyond baby back ribs to include pulled pork, pot roast, and other items.
Since consumers are dining out less and eating in more, it makes perfect sense for restaurants to move in this direction, but if the past is any indicator, I've found licensed food products are usually nothing but a letdown. Do you feel the same way? Could you see this being the moneymaker for restaurant chains this year?
Friday is finally here and you know what that means, it's cocktail time! Wow that sounded way too much like Sandra Lee... obviously it's been a very long week. I'm not afraid to say I'm ready for a strong, comforting cocktail — by comforting I mean super sweet and fabulously girlie. A raspberry lemon drop with a sugar coated rim is just what the doctor ordered. Think you can only order a cocktail this gorgeous at a restaurant? Well think again! I've got the California Pizza Kitchen's recipe, so you can enjoy it wherever you want, whenever you want. You'll learn how it's done when you read more