New Mexico Sojourn

July 14th, 2015

The famous saying “Life is Short, so Live it to the Fullest” is the best truism there is in these times of politic, economic and worldwide uneasiness.  Travel is always a good way to experience and learn, not necessarily only to the larger cities of our country or world, but to some of the smaller locales too.  Places like New Mexico always seem to be glossed over when thinking about visiting and dining places to go and explore.

 

Albuquerque has a nice collection of well-established restaurants and a few newcomers to visit too.  Seasons Rotisserie & Grill has been around for a while and is now part of a small collection of area restaurants in the town.  They offer straightforward American Cuisine and before “Farm to Table” was a catch phrase, they supported and served local products.  Crazy Fish has been in business for over a decade and currently has a Thai chef who likes to work his magic with the flavors of his country, but you have to ask.  As long as he has the ingredients, he will make anything for you, such as Green Curry Glaze on Shrimp Tempura Vegetable Roll.  The Monte Carlo Steakhouse, or should I say ‘Liquor Store’, since the restaurant is tucked behind the establishment; this is for sure a throwback restaurant, with extremely fair price on steaks, burgers and local specialties.  There is also Il Vicino, originally a local restaurant that has now expanded to Santa Fe, Colorado and Wichita. They are certainly not the inventors of the new pizza craze, but could be credited with establishing a niche in that market, with salads, pizzas, calzones, some pastas and a few great desserts, coupled with great service.

 

It’s very fair to say the all of the above restaurants would most likely be accepted by an opinionated and discerning clientele in any major metropolitan area, but this is Albuquerque, and unfortunately not on too many foodies’ radar screens.  Besides the great food experience is most importantly the feeling of genuine hospitality exuded by the staff at each restaurant – as one would say “Priceless”.

 

Santa Fe has no equal when it comes to art, tranquility and diversity, especially in who lives there.  There are the old and established stalwarts of the restaurant landscape, along with some new and independent startups.  Plus, a visit to the Farmer’s Market at the Railway Yards which is available twice a week, is like going to a great food banquet.  Choices abound from great hearth baked breads from Cloud Cliff Bakery to Homemade Raspberry Ginger & Chili preserves.  Ohori’s Coffee Company is a mainstay of the town, and has been roasting coffee for over 30 years, along with a welcoming smile and a great place to just meet local folks.  La Boca is one of the great simple places in Santa Fe to have a great selection of Tapas and small plates and some of the best food in the town.  Chef James Campbell Caruso, an eight times nominated James Beard Award Chef seems always to be there, not only cooking but welcoming and talking to guests.

 

Sweet Water Harvest Kitchen is tough to find, but for Breakfast & Lunch certainly hard to beat for great food, hospitality and local natural & organic ingredients. The new kid in town is the return of prodigal son John Sedlar with his homage to his grandmother at Eloisa located at the new Drury Hotel.  The menu features the best of Southwestern Cuisine and ingredients, and offers diners a glimpse of the past with wonderful gustatory leaps to the future.  The restaurant is watched over by local veteran Jack Shaab who certainly knows his way around the Santa Fe dining arena and is easing the restaurant into being a local jewel for its guests.

 

All of the restaurants share a simple, but sorry to say not common enough goal or experience; they are approachable, warm, friendly and extremely hospitable too.  Too many times restaurants forget that guests are coming for a good time and experience, and want to feel the comfort of being in a favorite place. The dictionary defines Hospitality as, “the friendly and generous reception and entertainment of guests, visitors, or strangers.”  Now, just think if more places and restaurants learned from New Mexico hospitality – what an idea!

 

 

NYC – BOWLS Takes Manhattan!

November 18th, 2014

NYC – BOWLS Takes Manhattan

 

 

NYC – BOWLS Takes Manhattan

After returning from an extended stay in New York City, I am finally having a chance to reflect on what actually happened over the last nine days.  We had a chance to return to the East Coast and a city that has given our company and our family so much, and truly do something special.  It also allowed us to collaborate with a collection of wonderful and amazingly talented people to create a project bigger than just us.

 

We set off to New York for the International Hotel, Motel & Restaurant Show to share with the world our concept, BOWLS – Food That’s Good For You!, which won the 2014 Foodservice Pioneering Concept of the Year, and was being showcased at the Javits Center.  For the show, we were able to bring our team who we worked together with to create the award-winning concept; Steve Carlson of Robert Rippe & Associates, our Kitchen Planner/Designer, Peter Cooper, VP of Middleby Corporation, who provided the equipment for the concept and Jef Salazar, who created the Graphics Package for the concept.  At The Nyman Group, we were responsible for creating the original idea behind BOWLS, which we always felt was perfect for the changing tastes of America and the demands of diners, whether it be in an Urban setting, a Hotel or even an Arena.  Prior to the show, a video was put together to showcase the concept and our team that developed BOWLS.

 

VIEW GALLERY HERE

 

[ CLICK ON PHOTO VIEW GALLERY ]

Starting on Thursday, November 6th, we began working with the team on three days of food prep for the concept launch, following up on our menu testing held the previous month in Los Angeles, where we vetted out our recipes and determined what we were going to showcase in New York.  With the help of a wonderful collection of Culinary students, we assembled our Dressings, Sauces, Proteins, Salads, Vegetables, Fresh Fruit Cider and ingredients overall which would be served at BOWLS.  By Saturday afternoon we were ready to go; all of our food was prepared and we were organized by day, with all of our flavors set to share.  

 

For the show, the IHMRS built us a working model (roughly an 80% version of the concept) on the floor of the Javits Convention Center that we were to show off.  The fantastic thing was that the Booth/Concept was right at one of the two the entry points to the show, so almost every attendee had to walk by us when they arrived to the show.  Amazing, right?  We had some great support from the team at VGS with our video menu boards to the outstanding installation by EcoWalls with their Chef’s Garden to the brand new LightFalls lighting installation by 3M.

 

The first day of the show was on Sunday, November 9th, when we had a chance to really introduce BOWLS to the world; hosting demos in our booth that morning and afternoon.  From the first BOWL that was served that day to the last, we knew we had a winning concept on our hands; people couldn’t get enough of the fresh flavors, different combinations, healthy element of the concept and flexibility of what we had created, plus a taste of our Magic Bar for dessert!

 

Over the next three days we were able to showcase BOWLS to a tremendous amount of people, from students at Culinary Schools and Hospitality Programs, to decision-makers from hospitality organizations to various equipment manufacturers who were at the show.  BOWLS was truly the highlight of the IHMRS experience and people took notice overall.  We even had the chance to host an awards ceremony in the booth and our President, Robert J. Nyman was able to give an interview to Beth Lorenzini, Editor of Foodservice Equipment Reports who is writing a feature story on the concept.

 

Where do we go from here?  Well, we are continuing to develop BOWLS internally with the desire to have a concept that we can bring to market and make a reality.  Whether that is with a hospitality organization at one of their hotels or at a hospital, BOWLS will become a reality.  We are looking towards the future with our team and serving our BOWLS guests.

 

 

 

Mr. Nyman goes to Washington…

June 4th, 2014

Over Memorial Day Weekend I had the pleasure to be able to travel once again, back to our Nation’s Capital, Washington, D.C. for a long weekend and enjoy the NCAA Lacrosse Final Four, being held up the road in Baltimore.  I went to support my alma mater, the University of Denver Pioneers, who I had also played lacrosse for and on their first Division I team, graduating in 1999.  As well, I have always had an affinity for D.C. from my childhood years but greater more so after living there in the early 2000’s.

After flying in on Friday night and getting settled, I had a chance to catch up with a great friend who wanted to take me out for a night on the town in the District.  But first, we had to start in Arlington, over the river for a quick bite and cocktails at Circa.  A much needed cocktail and some snacks were in order, along with catching up with two buddies who were joining us for the evening.

Catching an Uber (drunk driving is VERY heavily frowned upon in D.C.), we headed towards 14th Street, currently the hot corridor in the city, starting at Barcelona, a tapas themed bar/restaurant.  It is a VERY lively place, with a big bar scene, large outdoor patio and high-energy environment.

 

Walking down the street, we popped into Pearl Dive; a multi-story seafood concept with a big bar downstairs, cocktail lounge upstairs along with a bocce court on the second floor.  Awesome to see the unique concept, including multiple sensory experiences there.

 

The last stop of the evening, on the same street, was for a glass of wine and some snacks at Ghibellina, a modern Italian spot, in their bar.  This was a great service experience, with the bartenders truly delivering upon the promise of Hospitality, through recommendations and going above & beyond what we needed.  We were able to have their Varieta Di Salumi Artigianali, which was a great board of various salumi, all more delicious than the last.

 

Saturday was to be the big day and I wanted to get to Baltimore as soon as possible to support my boys.  We hit the road and made our way to the important Lot O – where all of the tailgates were being held for the Final Four teams.  It just so happened that the University of Denver party was right next door (separated by one tent) to the Duke University party, our opponent in that day’s game.  There were parents, alumni, fans, friends and plenty of others there to cheer on our Pioneers; a truly great morning.  This was the 4th Final Four that I have had the pleasure to attend and the 2nd one in four years watching my university play.  There is such a fantastic energy in the air during the Memorial Day Weekend of lacrosse, definitely which was not lost on me.

 

Unfortunately, my boys, while staging furious rally, fell short to the Blue Devils on Saturday.  While there were no shortage of long faces, it was a truly tremendous season and a pleasure to watch as an alum.

 

Coming back to the DC area, we decided for an early evening cocktail at The Graham Hotel, on their Rooftop patio, overlooking Georgetown and DC, all the way down K Street.  This is one of the newer hotels to open in Georgetown, keeping with the trend of smaller, boutique hotels offering unique experiences.  It was a gorgeous evening out, perfect for cocktails and good friends.

 

We then moved on to a classic restaurant from other city’s which is actually newly opened in D.C., Joe’s Stone Crab in the former Union Trust Bank location.  Choosing to sit in the lounge, we enjoyed a delicious bone-in Halibut Fillet along with Roasted Sweet Potato with Maple Pecan Butter.  Included in the atmosphere was some great people watching, including Washington Wizards star player, John Wall.

 

Last stop of the evening turned out to be a damn fun one, heading underground to Heist Nightclub on Jefferson.  Heist is a TINY club/lounge, accommodating less than a 150 people and you could feel it; with the vibe running hot, music being loud and party going strong.  We enjoyed this energy late into the night for sure.

 

 

By Sunday I was in need of a small detox, which fortunately came courtesy of a workout at Sports Club LA next to The Ritz Carlton, D.C.  After enjoying a steam, long hot shower and down time, I was back in the game and ready to go!  We ventured down to the Washington Harbor in Georgetown at the Waterfront for Brunch at Farmers Fishers Bakers, a temple of a restaurant that had lines running out the door, with an ode to all who allow restaurants to do what they do with their products.  Fortunately, we were able to score a seat at the bar before taking a walk to check out the full range of various offerings of the Sunday Brunch.

 

 

Before heading out, my friend and I enjoyed our annual multiple games of shooting pool, at a really cool little neighborhood spot in Arlington, Carpool.  Definitely a joint, but plenty of games and fun to choose from for a casual night out.

 

Continuing on, we headed towards downtown D.C. to one of my buddy’s favorite places, The Hamilton.  Just blocks from the White House, The Hamilton is much more than just a restaurant, with multiple bars, hundreds of restaurant seats and a subterranean concert venue!  We headed inside to the 2nd bar, which is actually right by the Sushi Bar (yes, really) taking over the side of the bar, with a great view of the crowd coming in for the show later that night, Lisa Loeb.

 

We enjoyed a fantastic selection of fresh sushi including Hamachi, Big Eye Tuna and plenty more fish, before I enjoyed a Roasted Asparagus Salad with Ramp Pesto.

 

 

Memorial Day Monday was back to Lacrosse up in Baltimore, starting at a Baltimore staple, Miss Shirley’s for a quick breakfast sandwich (on gluten-free bread I might add!) topped with plenty of Old Bay.  After watching Duke win their 2nd straight National Championship with my buddy, who is a Duke Alum we realized we needed a solid late lunch/early dinner before I headed out on my flight.  Going for a simple, straight forward yet classic option, we headed to the Capital Grille in the Inner Harbor, catching them right at 5pm when they opened.

I must say, I’ve had the pleasure to dine at quite a few Capital Grille’s and this was definitely not one of their top locations.  It could have been the Memorial Day Holiday, just a bad night or something else, but the restaurant was off overall.  My buddy’s steak was overcooked (Filet) and my Sirloin was also overcooked, plus was a vein-end piece of meat.  Things happen and they attempted service recovery pretty well, but it just wasn’t the best option.

 

Getting to the airport now full and exhausted, I was ready to head home back West.  Overall, it was a great trip catching up with some damn good people, lots of go go go and proud of my University of Denver Pioneers.  Looking forward to being back in our Nation’s Capital sooner rather than later and enjoying what it has to offer…

 

 

 

Catersource comes to Vegas

March 27th, 2014

 

Catersource 2014 BreakfastCatersource 2014 Breakfast - Director of Operations, Corey T. Nyman speaks about Technology in Hospitality.Catersource 2014 Breakfast - Director of Operations, Corey T. Nyman speaks about Technology in Hospitality.Catersource 2014 Breakfast - Director of Operations, Corey T. Nyman speaks about Technology in Hospitality.Catersource 2014 Breakfast - Director of Operations, Corey T. Nyman speaks about Technology in Hospitality.

 
Catersource 2014 Breakfast – Director of Operations, Corey T. Nyman speaks about Technology in Hospitality.

 

 

Yesterday, our Director of Operations, Corey T. Nyman had the pleasure to speak during the 2014 Catersource Conference & Tradeshow held at Paris Hotel & Resort in Las Vegas.  Corey was a speaker during the Taste of Technology Breakfast – touching upon innovations for the Catering and Food & Beverage industry in the Kitchen, with his segment titled ‘Technology in the Kitchen & (Life) Moving Forward – What’s Important?’.  The chief message through Corey’s talk was that Technology is wonderful and extremely important, however it all goes back to our people.  You must train, support, share and embrace them in order to best succeed.

 

The Catersource and Event Solutions Conference & Tradeshow is the industry’s biggest and best educational opportunity to learn, share and discover, held annually in Las Vegas.  You can learn more about their organization and the event here.  The tradeshow fully embraced technology this year, especially via Twitter, creating their own Hashtag, #CSES2014 – check out some of their great updates via this link.

Food Fanatic

November 6th, 2013

CoreyNGrowing up in a family business can impart experience and expertise to an individual, but when you begin cooking at 6 years old, start designing menus at 12 and move to Vegas to work for Wolfgang Puck at 18, your career gets a real jump start.

At least that’s what happened to Corey Nyman, now the president of his family business, the Nyman Group. “I was born and bred in the restaurant business,” he laughs. “If you’re going to be great manager or developer, you have to understand the basics, so I started out cooking.” Nyman’s move to Vegas wasn’t his first contact with the gaming industry, however.

“We put together the master plan for the restaurants at Trump Taj Mahal in the 1980s,” he says. “That gave me and my father a taste of the intersection between gaming and food and beverage. And after I came out to Vegas to cook for Wolf, our company developed the first iteration of food and beverage for the Venetian. That’s where we began to understand the idea of developing restaurants for gamers, conventioneers, hotel guests and visitors all at the same time. It’s all about the intrinsic value and how much we build into the offerings.”

Nyman says the non-gaming amenities are becoming the major features at casino resorts.

“In some cases, gaming is an amenity,” insists Nyman. “But the executives we’ve been contacting are more concerned about the restaurants, the shopping, the spa, the hotel rooms and all the things that make a stay at a great hotel special. If you want to increase visitation, you’ve got to have the amenities that keep the attention of the customers moving forward.

“These places are much more than just gaming now. It’s all about tourism, travel, entertainment and great times. It’s not just about what’s going on at the tables anymore.”

And it’s not just in Vegas anymore.

“We’ve got an office in Vegas,” he says, “but frankly, we’re doing more work with tribes and with casinos in secondary markets than we’re doing on the Strip. It’s the hub-and-spoke theory. If I can go an hour down the road and get a taste of everything Vegas has to offer rather than fly there with all the associated costs, I’m going to go there instead and have a great time for 24 hours.”

The Nyman Group is expanding beyond just food and beverage. They’re designing nightclubs, theaters and venues that aren’t traditionally included in the food-and-beverage category.

“It’s the economy of scale,” he explains. “If you can use a space for two different things, we can appeal to different kinds of customers at different times of the day. We’re applying data to make these decisions, down to such simple things like what time a show starts. It can make a huge difference.”

Nyman’s company continues to be engaged in the development of all non-gaming amenities in a casino resort, not just the food and beverage options.

“We believe that we truly understand how casino resorts will perform in the future,” he says. “With added competition coming on and online gaming allowing players to wager from home, it’s going to be crucial that casino resorts give their customers reasons to come again and again.”

read original article here

Communications from The Nyman Group

October 30th, 2013

 

Our Director of Operations, Corey T. Nyman was honored during the G2E conference in Las Vegas in September (the world’s largest gaming industry gathering) as an Under 40 “Emerging Leader” in the gaming & hospitality field.  This was the first year of the program, which will become an annual award, and is a way for the American Gaming Association (in coordination with G2E and the Innovation Group) to identify young industry professionals who are making their mark and helping to change the business for the better.

 

In following up on the award, Global Gaming Business Magazine put together a profile and interview with Corey further sharing his story, his time with The Nyman Group and passion for the Food & Beverage industry.  Take a moment to peruse the piece here.

 

We’re happy to share this fantastic news with you and when your travels bring you to Las Vegas, be sure to visit with us!  Additionally, stay tuned for some more news, views and information before year end from The Nyman Group!

 

October with The Nyman Group

October 23rd, 2013

Hello friends!  As we’re well into Fall right now, with Halloween around the corner, things at The Nyman Group are never boring.  It’s an exciting time for us and we wanted to take a moment to share with each of you.

 

Robert J. Nyman

Robert was recently quoted in an article in Hotels Magazine in a piece by Ann Bagel Storck, titled ‘Prime Cuts’ – innovative ways to keep Food & Beverage costs in check.  You can find the piece here, with Robert’s words on the first page.

Additionally, Robert recently was a guest of ‘The Radio Show’ with Glenn Haussman of Hotel Interactive – take a listen to Robert’s commentary here regarding current food trends in the industry.  He is a regular contributor to Glenn’s podcasts and it’s a great perspective overall.

 

Corey T. Nyman

Corey had the pleasure to be invited to pour his Labor Wines 2011 Pinot Noir at the Vegas edition of Cochon, held on Sunday night October 21st.  This was the All-Star Cochon event with 10 chefs from around the country gathering in Las Vegas to share their different flavors of pork while being joined by wines, spirits and beers, along with great friends.  Take a look here to find out more about the event and see some photos as well.

 

Craig Asher Nyman

Well, for Craig the biggest weekend of his year has finally arrived! This Friday, Saturday and Sunday in Downtown Las Vegas Craig’s hard work culminates in the launch of the Life Is Beautiful Festival.  He has been working on a large variety of aspects of the event including Booking, Ticketing, Packages, VIPs and too many more to count.  Take a look here to learn more about the event and if you still haven’t bought your tickets and are going to be in Vegas, come on down!

 

 

University of Denver – Speaking With Our Future

April 24th, 2013

As some of you know, I attended the University of Denver’s Fritz Knoebel School of Hospitality Management (formerly Hotel, Restaurant & Tourism Management) in the Daniels College of Business and take great pride in my university, including being a member of the school’s Executive Advisory Board. I am happy to dedicate my time and efforts to the further success of our program, students who are committed to hospitality and the university as a whole – giving back to what you are most passionate about is extremely important to me.

I was recently invited once again to speak with Dr. Cheri Young’s Restaurant Development class, which I had the pleasure to have done last year. This year, Dr. Young is teaching the class with a great restaurateur (also a former classmate and good friend of mine), Jon Schlegel, the founder of Snooze, an A.M. Eatery. I immediately committed to speak with the class and was all set to head to Denver on Tuesday morning, when a freak Spring snowstorm hit and changed my plans. However, we had modern technology on our side and Dr. Young suggested a call via Skype to connect me with the class – a great idea!

All of the students in the class were seniors, poised to graduate this June and head out into our amazing industry; so I wanted to make sure that I was supportive, informative and captivating of their attention. When you have a chance to speak with high school or college students, especially with the current generations, you must make every effort to keep their attention/keep them involved since they process information at such a fast rate with the technology, information and everything around them.

My conversation with these students was exactly that – I wasn’t speaking towards them, but rather with them. We kept a great back and forth going on the do’s and don’ts of restaurants, design elements, how to gather research/information and other elements of the business. I think I enjoyed the hour and a half Skype session as much as they did – these students are extremely bright, very engaging and forward thinking with the concepts that they are putting together. I look forward to having a chance to check out the 5 groups restaurant concepts at the end of their class and prior to their graduation.

I can’t thank Jon Schlegel and Dr. Young enough for this opportunity and look forward to the chance to speak with future classes at the school in the near future. My closing message to each of you is this – it’s not enough to follow your passion and embrace that passion; it is your task to SHARE your passion with others and support those who are just getting started in your industry. Take time, give back; the rewards you gain from that will be endless.

Las Vegas Weekly

April 19th, 2013

Nation’s Restaraunt News

April 19th, 2013

Click to Enlarge