Top 5 restaurant concepts that I wish existed

You've heard of Opaque's Dining in the Dark where dinner guests are blindfolded, seated in a dark room and left to navigate their dinner plates in total darkness, with only their senses of smell, taste, texture and hearing as guides . More recently you may have learned about the experience of being strapped to your chair and lifted by crane, along with your entire dining table full of guests, chefs, stovetops and grills, to a dinner-hurling height of 160 feet (that's about the height of an average town water tower or bridge, or 16 stories for you city dwellers) courtesy of Dinner in the Sky.

There's no end to the list of extreme restaurants out there - dining on toilets, eating with your hands, sci-fi and dinosaur themes. There truly is something for everyone. But what about "normal" unique concepts? Following are top 5 restaurants that I wish someone would create:

  1. Grilled cheese on wheels. There are grilled cheese restaurants out there that claim to specialize only in the grilled cheese sandwich. But all have learned that a business cannot stand on grilled cheese alone. As a result, their menus become larger and more complicated, to the point where grilled cheese is no longer the main focus. On chilly days, I'd love for a food truck to roll up to the curb and provide me with a classic grilled cheese (and it wouldn't hurt if the truck behind it served tomato soup).
  2. Allergy-free restaurant. Whether gluten, soy, dairy, nuts, shellfish, I'd love to see someone develop a restaurant based on Disney's food allergy program. If you've had the pleasure of dining at any location on Disney property in Florida or California, you know that 99 percent of the time, they can cook-to-order any meal for any food allergy sufferer without reasonable concern for cross contamination. How do they do it? Disney magic, along with years of planning and developing best practices for guest service. For a fee, they'll share their secrets via the Disney Institute.
  3. Ice cream (without stabilizers) shop. Do you know that 99 percent of the ice cream you're eating, whether in a restaurant, a diner or from a store, contains stabilizers? Guar gum, carob bean gum, and carrageen top the list of "all-natural" highly processed stabilizers that prevent ice cream from melting quickly, keep ice crystals from forming, and artificially give you the creamy smooth mouth feel of homemade ice cream. Oh, you might want to know that these "natural flavors" are made from beaver butt--just saying.
  4. From-scratch carnival food. Funnel cakes, dough boys, cotton candy, corn dogs, snow cones. Wouldn't it be wonderful if just one brave chef out there created our favorite carnival foods from scratch, without the additives, cancer-causing dyes, artificial flavors and preservatives? I'd drive anywhere for that. Seriously.
  5. Conveyer belt restaurant. Picture this: A round restaurant; kitchen in the middle; conveyer belts radiating from the kitchen like a child's drawing of the sun. Each conveyer belt connects to a table. Each table has an order kiosk. Type in your order, make a payment at the kiosk and within a few minutes, your order is delivered via conveyer belt. When you're done eating, put the dishes back on the belt and send them to the kitchen. Want dessert or coffee? Type it into the kiosk, which is also a juke box.

What do you think of these concepts?What kind of restaurant do you envision? Be sure to leave your comments below.

Browse Restaurant Culinary Management Schools & Colleges

Refine School Matches
Hide filters
  • SUBJECT Clear All

    See More


    See More



    Please enter valid US or Canada Zip.
            Results open in new window

            Searching Searching ...

            Matching School Ads
            5 Program(s) Found
            • Alumni have appeared in reality competition shows such as Top Chef and Project Runway.
            • Has a team of about 4,000 faculty members focused on helping students tap opportunities in a marketplace driven by ideas.
            • Offers programs in design, media arts, fashion, and culinary.
            • Provides program coordinators who work with students to ensure they have the learning materials, assignments, facilities, and faculty to get the most out of the program.
            • Over 50 campus locations nationwide.
            Good for Working Adults
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            1 Program(s) Found
            • Each campus features a public restaurant where culinary students work under the direction of professional chefs for real-world experience.
            • Hosts Platt College’s Food Fight, a friendly dessert competition for students held once a month.
            • Offers programs in culinary arts, nursing, and healthcare.
            • Accredited by the American Culinary Federation (AFC) and Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
            • 5 campuses in Lawton, North and Central Oklahoma City, Moore, and Tulsa, Oklahoma.
            1 Program(s) Found
            • Gives students the opportunity to earn their associate’s degree in the culinary arts field in less than 15 months or bachelor’s degree in the food service management field in 2.5 years through their year-round schedule.
            • Located in Norfolk and Newport News, Virginia.
            • Offers externship experiences to students for experience in the field.
            • Hosts regular career fairs for employer recruitment.
            • Has student housing available.
            • Accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACSCOC).
            Show more [+]
            3 Program(s) Found
            • Received the 2015 and 2013 “Cooking School of the Year” Award of Excellence from the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP).
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
            • Externship opportunities are available at numerous famous New York City restaurants.
            • Campus is located near downtown Manhattan, within walking distance of many popular attractions such as the Radio City Music Hall.
            Show more [+]
            Good for Working Adults
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            1 Program(s) Found
            • Has been training students in the culinary arts since 1946.
            • Teaches hands-on culinary training in French, Asian, Mediterranean, Latin and American cooking, along with professional baking and pastry techniques.
            • Helps students gain professional skills in culinary management.
            • Offers an Italian Culinary Arts program where students get to externship in Italy.
            • Its instructors are respected chefs who put their dedication and life experiences into their instruction.
            Show more [+]
            Good for Working Adults
            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            1 Program(s) Found
            • A private, accredited distance learning college based in Norcross, Georgia founded in 1987.
            • Ensures that service members, their spouses and veterans can maximize their military education benefits.
            • Gives students the option to customize monthly payments to fit their budgets and lifestyle.
            • Offers all-inclusive tuition: textbooks, learning materials, and academic support are covered in the cost.
            • Allows alumni to enroll in any future program at a reduced rate.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            1 Program(s) Found
            L'Ecole Culinaire , Kansas City
            • Offers educational opportunities for the aspiring, career-minded chef.
            • Students are trained by professional chefs and spend the majority of their final term working in the campus restaurant to learn all phases of the culinary industry.
            • St. Louis campus offers new Food Truck Entrepreneurship courses.
            • Has a student-run food truck that tours around St. Louis.
            • All campuses have a public restaurant where food is prepared and served by students.
            Show more [+]
            Good for Working Adults
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits