June 2, 2021

Ian Cook, Managing Editor

This week’s newsletter has a little bit of everything: some of the recent developments with the now famous Ghost Kitchen Brands, some emerging concepts from Nathan’s Famous, and now Kraft Heinz is tagging along on the virtual brand trend through their new partnership with Virturant.

We are very excited with the success The Ghost Kitchen Conference is seeing. Just in the past week, we have confirmed attendance from CloudKitchens, Virtual Dining Concepts, Lunchbox, REEF, Wow Bao, Bbot and more. To think all these key players in the industry will be in the same room after the year we’ve seen is an exciting notion to consider to say the least. We’re hoping we’ll get to see you there too!

For those of you who are attending, be sure to factor into your travel plans the post-conference luncheon and tour that Middleby Innovations Kitchens is hosting exclusively for conference attendees!  There is going to be great food, craft beer, and great company!

After this past long weekend, we hope you getting right back into the swing of things! Wishing you all the best. Enjoy your Ghost Kitchen Digest.

Issue #45

Lola's Latin Food Signs Multi-Million Dollar Deal with Ghost Kitchen Brands

Canada’s largest provider of Venezuelan food, Lola’s Latin Food (“Lola’s”) is pleased to announce that it is extending its partnership with Ghost Kitchens Brands (“Ghost Kitchens”), in a multi-million dollar agreement that will expand Lola’s much-loved Latin food options to an additional 77 Ghost Kitchens locations throughout Canada and into the U.S. by the end of 2022.


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Nathan's Plans To Revive Fast-Food Icon Arthur Treacher’s

Nathan's menu revamp of Arthur Treacher’s will highlight the brand's traditional items (like fish and chips) while also featuring upgraded proteins, more contemporary builds, and a focus on shrimp.


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CloudKitchens, Wow Bao and Bbot Join Growing Lineup of Sponsors at The Ghost Kitchen Conference

Ghost kitchen and virtual brand industry leaders continue to sign on as sponsors for The Ghost Kitchen Conference.


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Virturant Teams Up with Kraft Heinz for Tasty Sandwiches

Taste buds rejoice! Virtual restaurants Hell's Chicken, Uptown Burger and Chicken Tender Tribe are crafting high-quality, delicious menu items with a boost from Kraft Heinz' popular HONEYRACHA® Sauce, A1® Steak Sauce and 57® Sauce.


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How Walmart's Restaurants Are Evolving

Darryl Spinks, the company's head of retail services, talks about the shift into ghost kitchens and plans to more actively court small and regional restaurant tenants.


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Inside a “Ghost Kitchen” with Kitchen United

In Pasadena, California, there’s a storefront shared by 25 restaurant brands. It’s what’s known as a “ghost kitchen” or “virtual kitchen” –– the restaurants operating there fill takeout and delivery orders only.


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Middleby Signs on as Platinum Sponsor for the Ghost Kitchen Conference!

OnTrend Concepts is thrilled to announce that Middleby, a leader in foodservice equipment, has signed on as Platinum Sponsor for The Ghost Kitchen Conference!


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Inside The Halal Guys’ Ghost Kitchen Strategy

Seven years after it began franchising, The Halal Guys is closing in on 100 worldwide locations as it anticipates opening 30 to 40 new units over the next five years. With a product that’s well suited to delivery and carryout, the New York-based brand is continuing testing inside three ghost kitchens and is exploring new drive-thru locations as franchisees look to capitalize on vacant restaurant spaces now on the market.


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Logan's Roadhouse Parent Launches Virtual Brand Ember Smoked BBQ

SPB Hospitality is blazing the flavor trail and giving fans a whole new ‘cue experience with the launch of its latest virtual brand – Ember Smoked BBQ.


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Instagram-Worthy Neon Burger Concept from Milan Opens As Ghost Kitchen in LA

The concept’s defining feature is something customers won't easily forget: the buns range in color from bright pink to purple to lime green.


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Bubbakoo’s Burritos Launches Toss’ em Wing Factory Virtual Brand

Toss ’em Wing Factory is tossing up more than just wings, they also have entered into the chicken sandwich wars with four different options.


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This Restaurant Opened Its First U.S. Ghost Kitchen -- Will More Follow?

The coronavirus pandemic changed the face of restaurants. Not only did it force over 100,000 to shutter on a permanent basis, but it also changed the way restaurants operate.


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As Manhattan Wakes Up, Nazarian Gives Ghost Kitchens a New Future

Ghost kitchen pioneer Sam Nazarian is set to take a giant leap into the future of dining next month when he opens his first brick and mortar concepts at Brookfield’s Manhattan West in NYC, and later, the Phipps plaza mall in Atlanta.


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Kitch and Gzooh Kitchens Team Up To Build Virtual Branded Restaurants

Kitch is announcing a new partnership with Alberta-based Gzooh Kitchens to help them launch virtual brands across North America. The Kitch marketplace enables food operators to host ghost kitchens and innovative food concepts in unused commercial kitchen space.


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The Great Wings Rush

To see the future of food delivery, just look at chicken wings.


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Ghost Kitchens and Hospitality with Bill Stavrou

Find out how the founder of Foodhaul keeps hospitality alive through ghost kitchen concepts.


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Ghost Kitchen Expansion Could Create "New Reality" for QSRs

Many fast-food chains, including Chick-fil-A, Wendy’s, and Burger King, continue to expand their ghost kitchen operations and lean further into the delivery space.


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Dark, Ghost or Shadow Kitchens – They May Sound Like a Dubious Option, but They Are the Future

No longer the embarrassing relative that no one wants to talk about, well-known brands embraced dark kitchens to survive. And start-ups found the cost-efficiency of a dark kitchen, when delivery was the only option anyway, enabled them to become established in a difficult market.


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As Ghost Kitchens Take Off Parking Becomes a Big Concern

When looking at the best place for a ghost kitchen, the emerging consensus seems to indicate a hybrid model with a food hall may work best. Providing parking space for drivers and spaces for dining inside and outside could work in a post-pandemic world.


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KitchenGrowth Raises Seed Round, Launching Ghost Kitchens in Stockholm in July

While the UK, France and Germany have hotbeds of startup activity in the ghost kitchen and virtual restaurant space over the past couple years, Sweden and the bustling Stockholm innovation ecosystem has been relatively quiet when it comes to new restaurant tech startups.


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By Working with Home Entrepreneurs, Jakarta-Based DishServe Is Creating an Even More Asset-Light Version of Cloud Kitchens

Cloud kitchens are already meant to reduce the burden of infrastructure on food and beverage brands by providing them with centralized facilities to prepare meals for delivery. This means the responsibility falls on cloud kitchen operators to make sure they have enough locations to meet demand from F&B clients, while ensuring fast deliveries to end customers.


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