Red Robin names Brian Sullivan vice president of culinary + beverage innovation

Forty-year veteran cut his teeth at California Pizza Kitchen, wrote three cookbooks

Red Robin Gourmet Burgers and Brews named Brian Sullivan vice president of culinary & beverage innovation. The move is part of the burger chain’s recent initiatives in increasing investment in food quality and refreshing the menu. The current “North Star” five-point turnaround plan to drive improved business performance includes such initiatives.

Executives at Red Robin have full confidence in Sullivan’s abilities within the food and beverage innovation, menu strategy, franchise partnerships and retail food development functions. He has spent over four decades in the industry.

Sullivan’s global travels to Thailand, China, Italy, Japan, and France influence his culinary product. At California Pizza Kitchen he spent much of the time bringing these flavors to the chain’s diners over a 34-year stretch. Moreover, Sullivan became senior vice president of culinary innovation, a culmination of his career at CPK. In that role, he led the company’s creative development and deployment of new menu items, infusing flavors from recipes.

He also authored three cookbooks, according to a statement. These featured a “unique spin on California cuisine and California-style pizzas.”

“I enjoyed working with Brian during my time at California Pizza Kitchen and consider him one of the best culinary minds in the industry,” said G.J. Hart, president and chief executive of Red Robin. “I am excited he has joined Red Robin and will be leading our culinary and beverage strategy. Menu quality and innovation is a major component of our comeback plan and Brian and his team are making great progress on menu enhancements we will roll out later this year.”


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