CraftWorks Restaurants & Breweries, Inc., announced that the company will evolve its historic craft brewery and restaurant brands with the addition of Stan Frankenthaler, who joins the team as chief officer of food, beverage, and strategic supply. 

Frankenthaler will lead the brand's culinary reinvention efforts and oversee food and beverage initiatives for all of the CraftWorks' concepts, including Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurants, Rock Bottom Restaurants & Breweries, Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom, and ChopHouse.

"Stan and I share a vision and a passion for the casual-dining segment, and we look forward to bringing him on board to help guide all of our culinary and brewery creations," says Srinivas Kumar, chief executive officer, CraftWorks Restaurants & Breweries, Inc. "It's an exciting time for our brands as we expand on our menu offerings and provide unique dishes, as well as food and beer pairings. We know that under Stan's leadership and guidance, our guests will see an evolutionary change in their restaurant experiences, making for memorable moments in the years to come."

After extensive consumer research, Frankenthaler is leading the effort to add innovative, original menu items that intrigue guests at all three of Craftworks' primary brands. Gordon Biersch guests will see expansive new menu items focused on seafood, lighter cooking, and stylized classics. Rock Bottom guests will enjoy new comfort foods, as well as bold, new, Latin, and spicy flavors. And Old Chicago guests can expect familiar flavors with a twist.

Frankenthaler also is revamping the beverage menus at all four of CraftWorks' brands. Gordon Biersch will begin offering a wider variety of beers while staying true to the traditional brewing methods of the best brewing cultures; a wine list comprised of well-known producers from top growing regions around the world; and a fun cocktail menu focused on the classics. 

At Rock Bottom, guests can expect a creative, local beer list that's refreshed almost daily; wine offerings focused on the best regions across the Americas; and a trendy, inventive cocktail menu. Old Chicago guests will be able to enjoy a selection of wines and cocktails that are familiar and a great value. 

Finally, ChopHouse will offer a variety of distinctive wines and perfectly mastered, classic cocktails. Frankenthaler is developing new happy hour and late-night specials for each of CraftWorks' concepts, as well.

"As a guest of the CraftWorks' portfolio of brands over the years, I've always enjoyed the restaurant experience and, when the opportunity came to join the company, I knew it was meant to be," Frankenthaler says. "Our restaurants are fun to be in. Now is the time for us to set ourselves apart in the casual-dining industry by evolving and reinventing our experience as the economy continues to grow and consumers begin to look at alternate venues to share and celebrate occasions with family and friends."

A nationally recognized chef, entrepreneur, and author, Frankenthaler comes to CraftWorks from Dunkin' Brands, where he served as vice president of global innovation and executive corporate chef. In this role, Frankenthaler led menu innovation across all categories, driving profitable topline sales for Dunkin' Donuts and Baskin-Robbins in the United States and international markets. 

Prior to joining Dunkin' Brands, Frankenthaler was owner and chef of Salamander and The Blue Room, both of which received numerous accolades in Boston and nationwide. Earlier in his career, Frankenthaler led the North Atlantic Culinary Development for Whole Foods, creating new recipes and seasonal offerings, and maintaining the company's goal of restaurant-quality prepared foods. 

Frankenthaler is a three-time James Beard nominee and author of "The Occidental Tourist." He graduated with an associate's degree in occupational studies in culinary arts from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York, after receiving his Bachelor of Arts at the University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia.

Chef Profiles, Industry News, Menu Innovations, Gordon Biersch, Old Chicago