Chick-fil-A is now expanding its presence in the SF Bay Area via a ghost kitchen. The Atlanta-based chain started operating a delivery-only concept this month using DoorDash’s newly opened ghost kitchen facility, according to Nation’s Restaurant News. As of now, the full Chick-fil-A menu is available for delivery during Chick-fil-A hours from DoorDash Kitchens.
This isn’t Chick-fil-A’s first foray into ghost kitchens, as the chain already rents space from Kitchen United’s Chicago location.
DoorDash opened DoorDash Kitchens in October of this year. The facility offers kitchen space to restaurants wanting to fulfill more off-premises orders without having to actually open a full restaurant. Chick-fil-A joins The Halal Guys, Nation’s Giant Hamburgers, Rooster & Rice, Humphry Slocombe as participating restaurants.
The Redwood City location, which will be the first of multiple DoorDash Kitchens facilities, serves multiple cities around the Peninsula, including Menlo Park, Palo Alto, and Woodside, among others, so Chick-fil-A will be able to expand the small presence it already has in the Bay Area. Currently, the chain operates brick-and-mortar locations in San Jose and Sunnyvale.
Teaming up with DoorDash for a ghost kitchen operation is just one of many initiatives on Chick-fil-A’s part to boost off-premises orders around the country. The chain tested a meal kit program in 2018, where customers could try to recreate the Chick-fil-A experience at home. Shortly after, Chick-fil-A partnered with DoorDash for a much more traditional form of delivery across the U.S. Since then, the company has also introduced dine-in mobile ordering for customers, who can grab a seat at select brick-and-mortar locations and order from their phone without having to get in line. Chick-fil-A also operates a couple takeout-only brick-and-mortar locations where customers can order ahead via mobile app or get food at the pickup window. Besides a few lone tables outside, there is no dining room.
And with no dining room quickly becoming one of the new norms for restaurants everywhere, Chick-fil-A is wise to expand its off-premises strategy to include more ghost kitchens. Doubtless we’ll see it along with other national chains expand into other major cities in the near future.