discussion board

Ross L. Fink, Ph.D
More and more restaurants are using or looking to use ghost kitchens. Ghost kitchens are kitchens that are located outside of the normal restaurant. In most cases, there is no dining area or carry-out space–it is simply a kitchen. In the past, most stand-alone kitchens would be more of an assembly line operation to mass produce food for institutional customers. However, today these offsite kitchens are being deployed to handle trends in the fast-casual restaurant industry.
The biggest trend is delivery. In many cases, these ghost kitchens are used in combination with delivery services like DoorDash, GrubHub and Uber Eats.
In some cases, the ghost kitchens are owned by one company providing food for their brand or brands. In other cases, they are owned by one company that leases space to other companies, such as Kitchen Unlimited and Cloud Kitchens.
Many names are used other than ghost kitchens. Popular ones include dark kitchen, virtual kitchen, or commissary kitchen. Additionally, several companies are using central kitchens to delivery to their food to their local branch restaurants.
Virtual restaurants are restaurants that have no physical restaurant. They use one or more ghost kitchens to produce their food, and then deliver it to their customers.
Video Spotlight: Restaurants are cashing in on the delivery boom with ‘ghost kitchens’ ( Oct 18, 2019, CNBC Television )
This post is based on The Spoon article, Applebee’s Is Planning Ghost Kitchens for Delivery and Takeout Orders , by Jennifer Marston, March 2, 2020, and the YouTube video featured in the Video Spotlight .
Discussion Questions:
1. Why use a ghost kitchen?

2. Where should a ghost kitchen be located?

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3. Why use a virtual restaurant?

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