If you’re like me, you’ve probably been to the Hard Rock Cafe numerous times and in various cities throughout your life. I’ve been to almost every one – from New York to Boston, to London, Barcelona, all the way to Los Angeles, Amsterdam, Nashville, list goes on. And on. And I, like you, thought I knew everything there was to know about the Hard Rock, especially when I went there this past month. I was surprised.
I’ve come to learn that over the past 14 months, they’ve assembled a team to scour the globe, scrutinizing global drink and dessert trends in an effort to put together the perfect selection of trendy drinks while still keeping the good ol’ classics (you know, like the Hurricane, or the Mojito). I was fortunate enough to speak with Cindy Busi, Hard Rock’s Worldwide Director of Beverage, who walked me through the research and development that went into the new menu.
In this process, Cindy and team surveyed thousands of people across the globe, both employees and customers, scrutinizing what quenches guests’ thirst by analyzing international beverage trends (e.g, tequilas in Spain, vodkas and gins in Europe, etc.). Additionally, they were examining current sales trends (what drinks are selling the best and in what markets) to determine the best way to remix the menu. To complicate things even further, they’ve had to figure out how to keep drink consistency across the globe when taking into account that liquors and distributors aren’t in all the territories they needed the supply from. A crazy undertaking when you think about it.
Some new features of note are the inclusion of shared cocktails and flights. The three Margarita flight will launch you right into the meal. Their Red Berry Press is served in a French press, which is unique and fun. It’s a fruity vodka drink with a punch. I know what you’re thinking, and don’t worry, they’ve kept around some of your favorites – the Hurricane, the Mojito, the Electric Iced Tea.
Hard Rock’s culinary development and research process also allowed the brand to mix up the current menu and introduce 150 plus drinks in key areas, including tiki, coffee, dessert, mojitos, margaritas, lemonades, and oh, did I mention multi liquor teas (you know who you are if you like those!) and so much more! One alcoholic milkshake you have to try is the Twist and Shout which, believe it or not, has bacon on it! So good.
I could go on and on..
So if you’re like me and the other 92 million customers who enter their doors every year, I challenge you to take another look, cause what you are going to experience, like I did, will undoubtedly harken back memories of the meal you had in New York, or the one you spent hours at in Barcelona, only now, the new menu has pulled a seat up to the table. I encourage you to strike up a conversation. It is a global traveler, with many stories. I can tell you — it just might surprise you.
The new menu is the real deal.
About Hard Rock International
With a total of 180 venues in 56 countries, including 140 cafes, 19 hotels and 9 casinos, Hard Rock International (HRI) is one of the most globally recognized companies. Beginning with an Eric Clapton guitar, Hard Rock owns the world’s greatest collection of music memorabilia, which is displayed at its locations around the globe. Hard Rock is also known for its collectible fashion and music-related merchandise, Hard Rock Live performance venues and an award-winning website. HRI owns the global trademark for all Hard Rock brands. The company owns, operates and franchises Cafes in iconic cities including London, New York, San Francisco, Sydney and Dubai. HRI also owns, licenses and/or manages hotel/casino properties worldwide. Destinations include the company’s two most successful Hotel and Casino properties in Tampa and Hollywood, Fl., both owned and operated by HRI parent company The Seminole Tribe of Florida, as well as other exciting locations including Bali, Biloxi, Chicago, Cancun, Las Vegas, Palm Springs, San Diego and Singapore. Upcoming new Hard Rock Cafe locations include Seoul, Vienna, Anchorage and Siem Reap. New Hard Rock Hotel projects include Daytona Beach, Aruba, Abu Dhabi, Ibiza and Shenzhen and Haikou in China. For more information on Hard Rock International, visit www.hardrock.com.