Special Report

Restaurant Chains With the Happiest Customers

Source: bluemaumau / Flickr

> Category: Bagel and sandwich chains
> Score: 8.16/10

In response to customer demands for more customized menu items that would fit their lifestyle and dietary needs, Bruegger’s introduced a new menu, which offers possibilities for “healthy” substitutions. This attentiveness to client needs and wants seems to be working, as this chain ranked highest in its category.

Source: RiverNorthPhotography / Getty Images

Einstein Bros. Bagels
> Category: Bagel and sandwich chains
> Score: 8.01/10

Einstein’s support of No Kid Hungry, Kids to Camp, Mile High United Way’s School Readiness, Youth Success, and Adult Self-Sufficiency initiative, among other such programs has helped cement the chain’s identity as a family-friendly company.

Source: Jorge Villalba / Getty Images

Corner Bakery Cafe
> Category: Bagel and sandwich chains
> Score: 7.99/10

Launched in Chicago in 1991 by the city’s Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises, and famous for its emphasis on good service, Corner Bakery Cafe, now owned by the Roark Capital Group, has stressed responsiveness to customer menu suggestions.

Source: Corey Coyle / Wikimedia Commons

Pizza Ranch
> Category: Buffet restaurants
> Score: 7.67/10

A survey last year by customer experience management company Market Force Information named this Midwestern chain as America’s favorite purveyor of pizza. Though the name implies a pizza chain, the Newsweek study lists Pizza Ranch in the buffet category because it offers its pizza, as well as chicken dishes, salads, side dishes, and desserts, in self-service style.

Source: orphanjones / Flickr

> Category: Buffet restaurants
> Score: 7.57/10

Garden Fresh, which owns Souplantation and its sister chain Sweet Tomatoes, filed for bankruptcy in 2017, closing about 20 locations. It was taken over the same year by two private investment firms. Souplantation’s score on the Newsweek list suggests that it has strong customer loyalty, but in an apparent effort to improve loyalty still further, it recently launched an online guest satisfaction survey.