PASADENA, Calif.—Dog Haus, the fast-casual provider of gourmet hot dogs and burgers, was among the first foodservice providers to adopt the virtual or “ghost” kitchen concept. As NACS Daily reported in May, the “ghost kitchen” is where meals are made for off-premise consumption. The idea was thought of as a fad, but it is now poised to take off thanks to a significant increase in online/mobile food ordering and delivery during the pandemic.
More than a year ago, the Dog Haus committed to a multi-unit deal with Kitchen United, which provides equipped professional kitchen space to restaurants for the preparation of delivery-only meals. Currently, Dog Haus has two virtual kitchens open at Kitchen United’s locations in Chicago and Pasadena and will open its first Austin virtual kitchen with Kitchen United in early June.
According to QSR magazine, Dog Haus recently opened its first Dog Haus Innovation Kitchen with CloudKitchens in Hollywood, California, and its second virtual kitchen with CloudKitchens in Avondale, Illinois. A third in the Koreatown neighborhood of Los Angeles is set to open in early July. Dog Haus also has plans to expand its virtual kitchen locations in Los Angeles, Chicago and Manhattan.
In addition to serving the Dog Haus brand from the virtual kitchens, each new location also will serve The Absolute Brands' virtual concepts: Bad Mutha Clucka, Plant B and Bad-Ass Breakfast Burritos. The Absolute Brands, a new restaurant group created by Dog Haus’ founders, is comprised of Dog Haus and eight unique concepts.
“Virtual kitchens offer a one-of-a-kind opportunity for Dog Haus to bring its unique, chef-driven menu to people when and where they want a good meal,” André Vener, a Dog Haus partner, told QSR magazine. “Food delivery is booming. Well over half of modern-day consumers in the U.S. get delivery at least once a week, which translates to huge opportunities for businesses that can keep up … It’s not only an enormous growth opportunity but also an amazing way to serve our handcrafted creations to current and future Dog Haus fanatics in one fell swoop.”
Working with Kitchen United and CloudKitchens lets Dog Haus focus on preparing quality food. These companies also provide substantial data that allows Dog Haus to continue to optimize its offerings within key markets, creating tailored menus to satisfy the demand in each community. With strategically located off-premise sites, Dog Haus is expanding its delivery capabilities in the craft casual space, contributing to its aggressive expansion and success in 2020 and beyond.
Dog Haus has more than 50 locations nationwide, including 35 traditional restaurants and 20 special sites, with more than 10 locations in development.