Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Virtual Restaurants Continue to Evolve

Battle for Share of Stomach

Brick and mortar branded legacy restaurants continue to see a deteriorating business model according to Steven Johnson, Grocerant Guru® at Tacoma, WA based Foodservice Solutions®. The chain restaurant business model of 1980’s, 1990’s and 2,000 is fading away as consumers continue to seek non-traditional avenues of fresh food distribution according to Johnson.
One branded restaurant operator is exploring new business models hoping to ensure a competitive footing with consumers. Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises, the Chicago-based, restaurant group has announced the opening of a Whole30-branded virtual restaurant in Chicago in partnership with Grubhub. The delivery-only restaurant, called Whole30 Delivered, offers Whole30 approved meals based on the trendy lifestyle diet that emphasizes whole foods and the elimination of temptations like added sugar and alcohol.
R.J. Melman, Lettuce Entertain You president stated “We are thrilled to be working with two great organizations Whole30 and Grubhub  in putting together what we think is a very different delivery-only concept,”…“We think Whole30 is a great step forward for delivery-only kitchens.” 
Melman continued “Whole30 Delivered menu items include grain, sugar, legumes and dairy-free recipes created in collaboration with LEYE chefs such as Thai chicken-coconut-curry soup, Melissa’s Buffalo Chicken Salad, "spaghetti and meatballs" made with spaghetti squash and chicken meatballs, and roasted chicken tikka masala for an average price of $5.95 for side dishes like cauliflower rice to $13.95-$22.95 for entrees.
Melissa Urban, co-founder and CEO of Whole30 stated "While we love teaching participants how to cook Whole30 meals at home, it's a game-changer to have accessible, compliant, fast options for busy days,", said in a statement. "As a single mom and CEO, I'm already imagining how Whole30 Delivered could save the day with delicious, hearty meals when meetings run late or I'm traveling a lot."
The virtual restaurants will also offer deals like a "dinner for tonight, lunch for tomorrow" promotion that provides a discount on ordering multiple meals at once.
Delivery and quick-service meals made with the Whole30 diet in mind are trending: Chipotle announced a new meal category in January for “lifestyle bowls” to promote burrito bowl options for customers following trendy diets, including the Whole30 diet.  Is you brand evolving?
Invite Foodservice Solutions® to complete a Grocerant Program Assessment, Grocerant ScoreCard, or for product positioning or placement assistance, or call our Grocerant Guru®.  Since 1991 www.FoodserviceSolutions.us  of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche. Contact: Steve@FoodserviceSolutions.us or 253-759-7869

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