• Home
    Home We Serve America's Restaurants Representing nearly 500,000 restaurant businesses, we advocate for restaurant and foodservice industry interests and provide tools and systems that help members of all sizes achieve success.
  • Foundation
    Foundation Building & Retaining Talent The NRAEF is focused on developing a stronger workforce and building the next generation of industry leaders through education, scholarships and community engagement.
  • Show 2018
    Show 2018 May 19-22, 2018 As the international foodservice marketplace, the National Restaurant Association Show provides unparalleled opportunities for buyers and sellers to come together, conduct business and learn from each other.
  • ServSafe
    ServSafe Minimize Risk. Maximize Protection. For over 40 years, ServSafe® training programs have delivered the knowledge, leadership and protection that have earned the trust and confidence of business leaders everywhere.

National Restaurant Association - Innovation Summit: Elementary, my dear Watson

Skip to navigation Skip to content

News & Research

Email Print
News RSS

Innovation Summit: Elementary, my dear Watson

In this new age of cognitive computing, where science and creativity meet in harmony, and everything is stored in a cloud, along comes IBM’s Watson, Chef Watson that is, to help restaurant chefs and home cooks innovate in kitchens.

Watson, which can create thousands of new recipes with a small bit of data, will be among the highlights of our Restaurant Innovation Summit, Oct. 27-28, in San Diego. Florian Pinel, IBM’s senior lead architect on Chef Watson will show how the free application works.

After four years of research, IBM launched Chef Watson in June. It pairs science with food and taste preferences through cognitive computing algorithms. Chefs key in a few inputs to discover and create new and surprising ingredient combinations.

“Maybe those inputs are a key ingredient you bought at the market or a type of cuisine, like Spanish, Thai or Italian,” Pinel said. “Immediately, you get suggestions for four ingredients that would go well together to create the recipe. And if you want even more details, it can give you the full list of ingredients needed and the complete recipe steps.”

Even better is the option to further customize recipes for diners with special needs or dietary issues.

“The recipes can be tweaked depending on what the customer needs, wants and likes,” he said. “It can accommodate diners who are gluten free, vegan or vegetarian, or who have allergies and other restrictions. If a chef needs to create a dish that is, say, dairy- or nut-free, the program can adapt a new or existing recipe to meet those special needs.”

Another of Chef Watson’s most important assets is its ability to help chefs better manage their menu-engineering responsibilities, which helps them save time and be more efficient, Pinel said.

“As a chef, you have so many responsibilities,” he said. “Not only are you running a restaurant, but on top of that, you’re expected to create or revise menus constantly. With Chef Watson, you get those original ideas that save a little time so you can focus more on the preparation and create something even more interesting. It simplifies the task a bit and also provides new ideas.”

In addition to helping chefs make new culinary discoveries, IBM is applying Chef Watson’s same principles to other industries, such as pharmaceutical research, where it is helping accelerate development of innovative medical treatments.

The conference also will showcase other innovative technology that changes the way restaurants do business.

“We are showcasing today’s top tech subject-matter experts so restaurant professionals can have a chance to engage and interact with the latest advancements that will enable them to stay competitive, grow their businesses and enhance the customer’s dining experience by leaps and bounds,” said Phil Kafarakis, the National Restaurant’s chief innovation officer. See the summit agenda.

Pictured top right: Screen capture of the Chef Watson app

Conserve RSS Healthcare RSS Conserve RSS

▲ Back to Top

New report

Spot Ad right

We're glad you're here!®

® 2012-2017 National Restaurant Association. All rights reserved.

2055 L St. NW, Suite 700, Washington, DC 20036
(202) 331-5900 | (800) 424-5156