35-year restaurant veteran set to lead growing concepts
Front Burner Restaurant Group, LLC, the developer of distinctive restaurant concepts, today announced that Steve Shlemon has joined the company as Chief Executive Officer of Whiskey Cake Kitchen & Bar and Ida Claire.
With an impressive career that spans 35 years, Shlemon will lead operation strategy, menu innovation and marketing for both concepts.
“We are very excited to add someone of Steve’s caliber to our team,” said Randy DeWitt, Chief Executive Officer for Front Burner Restaurants. “His expertise and experience with growing brands will make him an invaluable asset to our restaurants.”
Prior to this new role, Shlemon served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Benihana, Inc. overseeing Benihana, RA Sushi and Haru concepts. He was also Vice President of Operations at Carraba’s Italian Grill where the company experienced growth from 15 to over 240 restaurants in 33 states and over $700 million in total revenue. He has also held executive roles at Bloomin Brands, TGI Fridays, Steak and Ale and Bennigan’s.
“I have a passion for the energetic team atmosphere and fast-paced environment found in restaurants, which is why I’ve been in the industry since I was 11 years old,” said Shlemon. “Both Ida Claire and Whiskey Cake are creative concepts with unlimited growth potential. I’m proud to join this talented team and look forward to continued expansion.”
Whiskey Cake Kitchen & Bar has locations in Oklahoma City, Plano, Katy and San Antonio, Texas with a new location opening in Irving next year. Ida Claire has one location in Addison.
Whiskey Cake is renowned for serving up tasty farm-to-kitchen dishes and cocktails out of its “from scratch only” kitchen and bar. Microwave? Never heard of it. Whiskey Cake uses slow-cooking methods on a live wood grill, smoker and spit because everything tastes better that way. And all that goodness is served while you kick your feet up in a rocking chair, while dining at a fancy table or as you relax out on the porch. Visit whiskey-cake.com for hours, directions, food and drinks menu and more information.
Ida Claire – South of Ordinary – is an intriguing, southern-inspired destination for relaxing suppers and slow weekend brunching, as well as a meeting hub for business lunches and happy hours. Learn more about her at ida-claire.com.
Front Burner is a restaurant innovation lab and the force behind more than 100 restaurants and multiple thriving concepts such as nationally recognized Twin Peaks, Whiskey Cake, Mexican Sugar, Velvet Taco, Ida Claire, The Keeper, The Ranch at Las Colinas and cutting-edge wine-on-tap concept Sixty Vines. Their mission is to open independent concepts with memorable names and to use fresh, local products to fill a gap in the market and break the traditional rules of dining. Their newest creation is the much-anticipated Legacy Hall. Legacy Hall is a 55,000-square-foot development complete with an on-site brewery, beer garden, 20+ artisan food stalls, a full-service restaurant and outdoor live entertainment venue.