Apparently Deliveroo in the UK is creating its own restaurant brands – it wants to work with celebrity chefs to open new concepts, with food produced in their dark kitchen production facilities. This will also allow international brands to test the popularity of their offer in markets with the right demographics.
Logically, their own house brands could also be invented eg Hamilton’s Rib House or Why Not Noodles, with an entirely cloud-based identity of menu, graphics and ‘story’. We’re used to house brand groceries at supermarkets, and they don’t have to be lower quality. Some restaurants send out delivery food under a different name, to avoid confusing their brand.
Take it further: you love the Ottolenghi cookbooks, but an Ottolenghi restaurant will never open near you – there is a solution! You’ll be able to order dishes from any of his cookbooks – robotic production like this would automate the process, just another extension of recipe software.
Or you’ve tasted the wonderful Turkish food of Somer Sivioglu of Efendy and Anason restaurants in Sydney – when you’re in Dallas, it could be delivered to your door via the local shadow kitchen working from his cookbooks.
Ultimately, the difference will come down to whether you want to eat someone else’s food at home, or in the company of others. I want both, and I like the idea of more choices.
Food at Efendy, photo courtesy of Brandee Meier