T.G.I. Friday's(R) Restaurants Unleash The 'Ultimate' Burger

Food Network's 'Ultimate Recipe Showdown' Winner Inspires 'The Triple Stacked Burger' Available Only at Friday's® Restaurants

Carrollton, Texas, // PRNewswire // -- After a nationwide recipe search to determine the ultimate burger recipe, a burger inspired by Harold Cohen, a 74-year-old retired plastic surgeon from Hollywood, Florida, will be featured at over 600 U.S. T.G.I. Friday's® restaurants beginning today.

Cohen's recipe was judged to be best in class by a panel of food experts on Food Network's "Ultimate Recipe Showdown" - a six-week series featuring everyday folks with the best recipes in America pitting their best dishes against one another for a $25,000 prize, national acclaim and the chance to have his or her recipe featured nationwide at T.G.I. Friday's (http://www.foodnetwork.com/ultimate-recipe-showdown/index.html). This is the second consecutive year in which winning recipes from the show have inspired entrees on the Friday's menu.

The ultimate result: The Triple Stacked Burger, a juicy beef patty with a zesty red pepper pimento blend of sharp Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses, topped with ham, crispy bacon, pickles and more cheese, all stacked on a toasted bun and served with fresh home-style potato chips.

"This burger is loaded with all the great flavors from the winning recipe," said Scott Randolph, senior director of culinary, R&D for T.G.I. Friday's USA. "We thought it was very 'Friday's' to serve this burger stacked, so instead of chopping the ham in with the patty as Harold did, we stacked it right on top of the burger with the bacon. It is very true to the original recipe and also very true to Friday's."

Earlier this month, over 600,000 members of Friday's guest recognition program, Give Me More Stripes™ (www.givememorestripes.com) received a coupon via email worth $5 off any Ultimate Recipe Showdown entree. The coupon is valid through February 16, 2009.

Food Network's "Ultimate Recipe Showdown," in its second season, features original recipes, whittled down from thousands of submissions, in six categories -- Comfort Food, Burgers, Cakes, Hot & Spicy, Desserts and Hometown Favorites. The show, hosted by Guy Fieri, aired last night with four finalists competing in two rounds: speed and signature dish. The show will air every Sunday at 9 pm ET/PT through February 15.

About Give Me More Stripes

The only nationwide in-restaurant program of its kind has over 600,000 members in the U.S. Give Me More Stripes perks available at participating restaurants.

Membership benefits include, but are not limited to the following:

Personalized & customized membership cardFree appetizer or dessert upon sign-up (up to $8 value)One-time use jump-the-line-pass$8 certificate for every $100 spent (excluding alcohol-only purchases)Exclusive communication about specials and food/drink previews

Carlson Restaurants Worldwide Inc., the parent company of T.G.I. Friday's Inc., is a privately held company owned by Minneapolis-based Carlson, a world leader in the hospitality, travel and marketing industries. As of January 2009, Carlson Restaurants Worldwide owns, operates, franchises or licenses more than 1,000 restaurants in 62 countries.

Food Network is a unique lifestyle network and Web site that strives to be way more than cooking. The network is committed to exploring new and different ways to approach food - through pop culture, competition, adventure, and travel - while also expanding its repertoire of technique-based information. Food Network is distributed to more than 90 million U.S. households and averages more than seven million Web site users monthly. With headquarters in New York City and offices in Atlanta, Los Angeles, Chicago, Detroit and Knoxville, Food Network can be seen internationally in Canada, Australia, Korea, Thailand, Singapore, the Philippines, Monaco, Andorra, Africa, France, and the French-speaking territories in the Caribbean and Polynesia. The E.W. Scripps Company , which also owns and operates HGTV, DIY Network, Great American Country and FINE LIVING, is the manager and general partner.

SOURCE: T.G.I. Friday's restaurants

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