Danny Meyer, CEO of Union Square Hospitality Group and the founder of Shake Shack will receive the TORCH Award during the upcoming International Restaurant & Foodservice Show of New York (March 5 to March 7 at the Javits Center in New York).

The Torch Award, presented by The Food Shows and Ferdinand Metz Foodservice Forum, was created to honor outstanding restaurateurs who embody all the qualities and characteristics of the word Torch which symbolizes, including illumination, energy, joy, victory, enlightenment, hope and education. As a restaurateur extraordinaire and enlightened hospitality guru, Danny Meyer’s ability to teach and share clearly demonstrates the definition of the Torch. 

“Since the start of his career 30 years ago, Meyer has launched a number of highly successful restaurants with locations throughout the country, and is an exemplary leader in the restaurant industry,” says Master Chef Metz. “We are thrilled to present Danny with this prestigious award for his commitment to the industry, his teams, the public they serve, and the communities they support.”

Union Square Hospitality Group includes Union Square Cafe, Gramercy Tavern, Blue Smoke, Jazz Standard, The Modern, Maialino, Untitled, North End Grill, Marta, Porchlight, Union Square Events, and Hospitality Quotient, a learning and consulting business. Danny, his restaurants and chefs have earned an unprecedented 28 James Beard Awards, and in 2015, Danny was named to the TIME 100 list of the Most Influential People in the World. Danny’s first business book, :Setting the Table: (HarperCollins, 2006), a New York Times bestseller, examines the power of hospitality in restaurants, business and life. An active national leader in the fight against hunger, Danny serves on the board of Share Our Strength and has long supported hunger relief initiatives including City Harvest, God’s Love We Deliver, and the Bed-Stuy Campaign Against Hunger.

The TORCH award will be presented on Monday, March 6, 2017 in the Culinary Demonstration Theater on the show floor.  All attendees are invited to attend the presentation, which will be followed by a conversation with Danny Meyer and Ferdinand Metz, certified master chef, former president of the Culinary Institute of America for more than 20 years, and chairman of the Ferdinand Metz Foodservice Forum.

“On behalf of Urban Expositions, event producers, we are thrilled to recognize Danny Meyer with this award which recognizes his commitment to driving innovation and hospitality in the restaurant community,” says Ron Mathews, vice president for the Urban Expositions Family of Foodservice Events. “Meyer joins previous Torch Award Winners Thomas Keller, chef and proprietor, The Thomas Keller Restaurant Group; and Drew Nieporent, founder and inspiration behind the Myriad Restaurant Group.”

Melissa Fleischut, president of the New York State Restaurant Association, adds, “Danny Meyer and Union Square Hospitality Group have enhanced the New York restaurant scene tremendously by setting a high bar for food and service across many dining segments.  We are proud to count them among our members, and add our congratulations”.

The International Restaurant & Foodservice Show of New York, sponsored by the New York State Restaurant Association, will bring together 550-plus vendors and 16,000 restaurant, foodservice and retail professionals to the Jacob Javits Convention Center March 5—7, 2017. Attendees of the Expo will have the opportunity to participate in over 30 educational sessions at the Ferdinand Metz Foodservice Forum, the gold standard, industry-leading educational conference dedicated to foodservice professional development.

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