There always seems to be restaurant news on the menu. As I do every week, let's take a look at some of this week's more appetizing stories.

1. Let's be frank
Hot dog champ Nathan's Famous (NASDAQ:NATH) posted fiscal third-quarter results this morning. The company posted a profit of $0.14 a share for the period, flat with what it earned a year ago. Revenue from continuing operations inched 4% higher to $10.6 million.

Nathan's empire consists of 250 namesake stands, with all but five of them operating as franchised locations. The company also has brisk business selling its frankfurters through retail outlets.

2. Hitting up the BK Lounge
Burger King (NYSE:BKC) remains fast-food royalty. The company scored its 20th consecutive quarter of higher worldwide comps.

Revenue for the fourth quarter rose 3% to $634 million. Earnings came in at $0.33 a share, but they would have been $0.38 without the negative impact of currency-rate fluctuations. The country's second-largest burger chain earned $0.36 a share during the previous year's final quarter.

Fast-food chains including Burger King and McDonald's (NYSE:MCD) continue to fare well in this economy, because the value-menu items appeal to cash-strapped patrons.

3. Baseball metaphors during a football game
Did you stop by for you free Grand Slam Breakfast at Denny's (NASDAQ:DENN) this week? The company made a bold bet in establishing itself as a breakfast leader, after taking out a Super Bowl ad promoting the free meal. It was offered from 6 a.m. through 2 p.m. on Tuesday.

This is a good time to take a Grand Slam swing. Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) is struggling to rediscover its groove, just as Wendy's is scaling back on the morning market. Denny's will never be as quick and convenient as the drive-through simplicity of McDonald's or Burger King, but it has a clear message worth getting out.

Was the free meal a success? Well, roughly 2 million free Grand Slams were served, an average of 130 at each restaurant per hour. The company's website also received 40 million hits after the Super Bowl ad ran. Sounds pretty good, but on the downside, even though tables turned quickly -- approximately every 20 minutes -- the average wait was an hour.

If Denny's wanted to show off its quick convenience, making patrons wait an hour is not going to leave a good impression.

4. Casual dining sees red
Diminishing profitability at casual-dining concepts has turned into losses. Bob Evans (NASDAQ:BOBE) warned that it will post a loss for its fiscal third quarter that ended two weeks ago. The red ink is actually the result of an asset-impairment charge, so shareholders should note that the company is still looking to post an adjusted operating profit.

O'Charley's (NASDAQ:CHUX) also posted a charge-laden loss yesterday. The key difference here is that O'Charley's would have still closed out its latest quarter in the red without writing down the value of its assets.

Check out this week's dessert specials: