On the constantly-changing stage of the $558-billion restaurant industry, it is no secret that casual dining is evolving. Most notably — and to the alarm of many — the middle of this segment is struggling, as fast casual operations capture more casual dining business at the lower end of the price point spectrum, while the more specialized “modified” and “polished” casual concepts find a sweet spot in casual dining's higher end. Ron Paul, veteran consultant and a principal of Technomic Inc. ...

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