After a year of closed dining rooms or dining rooms with low capacity, the restaurants had to reinvent themselves. New business models that use digital platforms and offer take-away and delivery groceries are likely to gain a permanent foothold in the restaurant industry – and delivery businesses with so-called ghost kitchens had already increased before the pandemic began. The San Francisco Chronicle reports that food delivery is expected to become a $ 365 billion industry by 2030.
In “Digital Food Halls”, which are the next to come from the Ghost Kitchen movement, customers can order either online or at kiosks on site. With several restaurants under the roof of the Foodhall, guests can order numerous menus. According to San Jose Inside, a Palo Alto-based company founded by former DoorDash employees Jon Goldsmith and Andrew Munday, the concept was supported by South Bay firm Local Kitchens. Goldsmith, the CEO of Local Kitchens, told San Jose Inside that alternatives to the traditional restaurant model were in demand even before the pandemic.
“We’re bringing several of the Bay Area’s best local restaurants under one roof and closer to home,” said Local Kitchens on their website. The company has three locations in the South Bay, including Cupertino, San Jose and Menlo Park, and one location in the East Bay in Lafayette. The latest to open are in San Jose and Cupertino. San Jose Inside reported that Local Kitchens has worked with nine restaurants so far: Curry Up Now (Indian street food), Glaze (teriyaki grill), Humphry Slocombe (ice cream), The Little Chihuahua (sustainable Mexican), MIXT (gourmet salads ), Proposition Chicken (chicken sandwiches, salads, and starters), Saucy Asian (Korean, Latin American, and Californian mashups), Señor Sisig (Filipino street food), Wise Sons (deli dishes), and Sajj (Mediterranean food).
The newest “Digital Food Hall” from Local Kitchens in Cupertino recently celebrated its grand opening. Source: Local cuisines
A ghost kitchen is a commissioner’s kitchen with no dining room, specially designed for the delivery of groceries. “Today, [ghost kitchens] It’s home to some of the Bay Area’s most popular independent restaurants, including Brenda’s French Soul Food, Señor Sisig, and Vegan Mob, “The Chronicle reported. Uber co-founder and former CEO Travis Kalanick now runs Cloud Kitchens, which, along with other ghost kitchen companies, specializes on real estate and logistics, these companies are buying warehouses and converting them into small commercial kitchens for restaurateurs to work in, according to the chronicle.
In another paradigm-breaking business model, the Bay Area is also home to facilities with a single commercial kitchen where employees prepare meals from multiple restaurants, the Chronicle reported. “San Francisco-based Virtual Kitchen Co., a former Uber company that has raised $ 35.3 million, operates 10 locations in the Bay Area, which are displayed as the Local Food Hall in delivery apps “reported the Chronicle.
These new models address some of the restaurant’s traditional weaknesses, such as high rents in busy markets, prime real estate markets, high staff costs and high overheads from expensive kitchen appliances. “Ghost kitchens pay rent, look after the staff, and even pick up the food or ingredients from the restaurants,” the Chronicle said, adding that restaurants may be able to increase their number of guests as they are not limited by dining room space are.
Ghost kitchens are taking a “deep cut” in sales as compensation, the Chronicle reported, making the bottom line of restaurateurs’ profits more difficult to pin down. However, as all aspects of the brick and mortar economy continue to migrate online, there will likely be more digital food halls and ghost kitchens in our future.