The Kroger Co. has opened another in-store “restaurant hub” with partner Kitchen United MIX.
Located at 5665 East Mockingbird La. in Dallas, the so-called “virtual food court” allows customers to place orders online, through a mobile device or via an in-person ordering kiosk using Kitchen United’s MIX platform and then pick up their meals on-site or have them delivered. Restaurant staff prepare the orders, with delivery service fees set by third-party providers.
The latest ghost kitchen opening, announced Monday, marks Kroger’s third location since its national partnership with Pasadena, Calif.-based Kitchen United was unveiled last August. Kroger’s first restaurant kitchen opened inside a Ralphs supermarket in Westwood, Calif., in January. That was followed in late February by a second Kitchen United location inside a Kroger supermarket in Houston.
“We are always looking for new and unique ways to help our customers answer the ‘What’s for dinner tonight?’ question,” Keith Shoemaker, president of the Kroger Dallas Division, said in a statement. “The collaboration with Kitchen United is special because customers’ restaurant-quality meal will be crafted while they’re shopping for the fresh food and pantry staples their families need.”
The Kitchen United MIX in the Kroger Dallas store offers customers a choice of eight local and national eateries, including Dog Haus, Curry Up Now, Monkey King Noodle Company, Celebrity Chef David Chang’s Fuku, Capriotti’s Sandwich Shop, Carl’s Jr., Bad-Ass Breakfast Burritos and The Impossible Shop. That compares with 13 and 11 restaurants, respectively, currently available at the MIX restaurant centers in the Kroger Houston and Ralphs Westwood stores.
“When our customers think of food, they think of Kroger,” commented Dan De La Rosa, group vice president of fresh merchandising for Cincinnati-based Kroger. “The Kitchen United collaboration provides the fresh, on-demand meals our customers crave. It is one more innovative example of how Kroger is fulfilling its commitment to anything, anywhere, anytime.”
The two Kroger sites give Kitchen United MIX four locations overall in Texas, including restaurant hubs in Austin and a location in Frisco that opened last month.
“Kitchen United MIX is proud to open our first state-of-the-art grocery installation in the Dallas area,” Kitchen United CEO Michael Montagano stated. “We recently debuted our supermarket concept, and guests have been incredibly impressed with the convenience and variety Kitchen United MIX provides.”
A key draw of the Kitchen United MIX centers is that shoppers can combine orders from multiple restaurants and have their purchases grouped on one receipt. Customers, too, can use third-party delivery platforms to place orders from restaurants in Kitchen United MIX locations but won’t be able to perform multi-restaurant ordering to mix and match food items.
“With our proprietary, leading-edge technology, Kitchen United MIX is revolutionizing the way people order takeout, and we couldn’t be more excited to introduce this one-of-a-kind experience to Dallas,” Montagano added. “We’ve secured the perfect location near SMU [Southern Methodist University] for us to deliver to college students seeking quick, easy meals and serve locals in surrounding neighborhoods who enjoy having delicious options to take home to their family after they get their grocery shopping done.”