If you're someone who loves to use food delivery apps like GrubHub or DoorDash, you've probably stumbled across the term "ghost kitchen" before-- but what about a "virtual restaurant"?
I was unfamiliar with that term until I saw a recent post on the South Haven Michigan Facebook page where local entrepreneur Trevor Brooks posted,
Try out South Haven's first virtual restaurant! Mr. Beast Burger open 11AM-8PM through DoorDash.
As I mentioned, this whole "virtual restaurant" idea is new to me so I was intrigued by the concept. I wondered if there was even a difference between a ghost kitchen and a virtual restaurant and as it turns out-- there is!
Ghost Kitchen vs. Virtual Restaurant
According to GrubHub a ghost kitchen, "is a professional cooking facility that exists for chefs and restaurant operators to launch a delivery-only virtual brand." Essentially, a ghost kitchen is a way for chefs and entrepreneurs to launch their brand without needing the capital to acquire a brick-and-mortar location.
Conversely, a virtual restaurant "is a delivery-only restaurant concept that...operate(s) in tandem with the brick and mortar restaurants." For example, say you are an established restaurant owner who wishes to offer additional menu items through your "new" restaurant only-- that's a virtual kitchen.
Mr. Beast Burger
When one local asked Trevor, who owns South Haven Dairy Queen, whether it was a new brick-and-mortar space he replied,
No, they partner with existing restaurants, like us, to produce the food for them.
According to DoorDash, delivery from Mr. Beast Burger in South Haven is available 7 days a week starting at 11:00 a.m. No surprise, the virtual restaurant offers a menu similar to Dairy Queen's: chicken tenders, beef patty burgers, impossible burgers, fries, and more.
Do you know of any other ghost kitchens or virtual restaurants located in west Michigan?