I am relatively now to Chow and very new to this board so I apologize if this topic has been covered . . .
I wonder what people think constitutes a restaurant "chain"?
When does a chef's multiple enterprises move his restaurants into the "chain" category? Is Bobby Flay's Mesa Grill a Chain with 3 locations? What about his "Burger Palace" concept currently with 10 locations? Bobby Flay Steak has one location and Bar Americain two, are they chains because they are a part of his restaurant empire?
The same can be asked about dozens of "celebrity" chefs and not so celebrity chefs who open up multiple incarnations of their restaurants or tweak a theme and open up multiple restaurants serving different cuisines?
Finally, what about "restaurant groups" in DC we have Great American Restaurants and the Clyde’s Restaurant Group. Do all of their restaurants automatically become "chain" restaurants because they all have the same owners? Or are only the ones who actually share the same name become "chains"?
Are chain restaurants the sleazy underbelly of the food world . . . . we don’t know how to define them but we know them when we see them?