SeaFood Business

MAY 2013

SeaFood Business is the global trusted authority for seafood buyers and sellers. We are the seafood industry's leading trade magazine with more than 30 years of experience. Our coverage is based on the "business" of buying and selling seafood.

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Page 38 of 54

Behind the Line Photo courtesy of Tommy Bahama Restaurants Shoppers at Tommy Bahama locations with restaurants tend to stay longer. Stylish cuisine Tommy Bahama mixes apparel, seafood in restaurant-retail concept By Lauren Kramer C lothing retailer Tommy Bahama is confdent that shoppers want food when they shop for vacation apparel. It's why the chain, owned by Atlanta-based Oxford Industries opened its frst retailrestaurant location in Naples, Fla., in 1996, along with 14 more over the 17 years that followed. Te most recent restaurant store opened on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan in December, with a bar featuring a sugarcane press for cocktails and a menu ofering vacation-style dishes like grouper Reubens, macadamia-nut encrusted snapper and seared scallop sliders. "We have 10 diferent types of seafood at our Manhattan location," says chef Don 34 SeaFood Business May 2013 Donley, culinary director for Tommy Bahama Restaurants. Te food is elegant but simple, island-inspired American cuisine with a special emphasis on seafood. Top sellers include coconut shrimp, ahi poke Napoleon and tiger shrimp pasta. Each of the retail-restaurants has the same core menu but adds regional cuisine in line with its particular market. Oferings in Manhattan include swordfsh and striped bass, while the Naples location features black grouper and the Mauna Lani, Hawaii, restaurant menus pink snapper, opah, monchong and broadbill swordfsh. In a December 2012 push toward sustainability, the Tommy Bahama Group's restaurants made the Monterey Bay Aquarium's Seafood Watch program a company standard. Among other changes, it meant removing Chilean sea bass from the menu and replacing it with black cod, or sablefsh. "Prior to December we up to $60 million in annual sales, Donley says. Tat works out to 2.5 times the sales per square foot of Tommy Bahama's 96 retail-only locations, says Terry Pillow, CEO. "It's not a business you can do half-heartedly," he cautions. "You need to bring in real professionals who not only understand the restaurant business, but also understand your brand. Te magic happens only when there is harmony with your restaurant ofering and the overarching brand." Te harmony is sustained by food that aims to be "fun, vibrant, colorful, fresh and healthy," says Donley. "It carries the sense of people relaxing in the islands." And it's that atmosphere that extends through the entire shopping and dining experience at Tommy Bahama, leading to guests spending more time per visit. Te retail-restaurant locations "provide context to the brand and the brand story in terms of who we are as a company and what we do," "They offer the brand in a three-dimensional format, as guests get to see staff in uniforms, food, plate wear, furniture and music." — Rob Goldberg, senior VP, Tommy Bahama Restaurants didn't emphasize sustainability, but we already had some sustainable species on our menu," Donley says. "From this point forward, any seafood we serve we want it to be a sustainable product." Te company does not have one national seafood supplier. Rather, chefs work with regional suppliers in their own markets. Te restaurants range in size from 6,000 to 13,000 square feet. Tey generate says Rob Goldberg, senior VP of restaurants. "Tey offer the brand in a three-dimensional format, as guests get to see staf in uniforms, food, plate wear, furniture and music, all rolling out into our broader message about relaxation and style." Because consumers at the retail-restaurant locations get to see the whole brand and lifestyle, those locations are "tremendous trafc Continued on page 42 Visit us online at

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