•   
  •   
  •   

Food Golden Corral is expanding on its buffet model with drive-thrus, alcohol and curbside pickup

21:10  14 april  2021
21:10  14 april  2021 Source:   businessinsider.com

These Restaurants Are Open on Easter Sunday, in Case You Don't Feel Like Cooking

  These Restaurants Are Open on Easter Sunday, in Case You Don't Feel Like Cooking Stress less and enjoy the day more this April 4.Even if you're not going to a big crowded event or visiting far-flung family members, you'll still need to plan an Easter brunch or Easter dinner for the household. But if you're exhausted from more than a year straight of cooking for the family, it might be time to let someone else make the meal.

a sign on the side of a building: Hollis Johnson © Provided by Business Insider Hollis Johnson
  • Golden Corral pivoted to curbside pickup and drive-thru concepts during the pandemic.
  • Buffets were closed across the country to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
  • The chain is investing in alcohol options to attract new customers.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Buffet chain Golden Corral is reworking its core business model by adding drive-thrus and alcohol, CEO Lance Trenary told Insider.

Off-premises orders made up less than 3% of all business before the coronavirus pandemic, and the team started thinking about what changes could make business more sustainable when it eventually reopened. To do that, Golden Corral looked at restaurants with multiple access points - curbside, drive-thru, and delivery were all alternative ways customers could buy food without dining inside.

Golden Corral Has Been Making Changes During The Pandemic Including Testing Out Frozen Margaritas

  Golden Corral Has Been Making Changes During The Pandemic Including Testing Out Frozen Margaritas The chocolate fountain is still there though.Golden Corral's CEO Lance Trenary told Restaurant Business recently that the chain has to"completely change our business model and innovate with new ideas” during the pandemic. Some of these new ideas have to do with specific menu items, such as rolling out a menu of plated entrees, rather than relying solely on the buffet. Despite the chain's initial reluctance to add alcohol to menus, Golden Corral is also testing frozen margaritas and daiquiris, along with beer and wine, at participating locations.

Read more: Chipotle's tech chief reveals how its investment in Nuro's self-driving vehicles could 'solve' restaurants' delivery problems, as Domino's rolls out the autonomous vehicles this week

Golden Corral started testing its own drive-thrus "out of necessity," but they look different from a McDonald's or Chick-fil-A drive-thru, because Golden Corral restaurants weren't built with drive-thrus in mind. Instead, the chain created two options, Trenary said. The first is similar to carhop service, he told Insider. Customers place orders at a drive-thru screen as they would at any restaurant, then are directed to a parking spot, with a target to deliver food in three minutes.

Golden Corral © Golden Corral Golden Corral

The other model might more accurately be described as curbside pickup, but Golden Corral calls it a "virtual drive-thru." Customers pull into a parking spot with a QR code to scan, which pulls up a menu where they can then place an order and have food brought to the car. The chain has six active drive-thrus, with plans to open more in coming weeks.

What's the Difference Between Fast Food & Fast Casual?

  What's the Difference Between Fast Food & Fast Casual? Jason Hoffman/Thrillist Since the turn of the century, anthropologists, sociologists, and people weirdly invested in the quick service industry have argued over a central question: What separates a fast food joint from a so-called fast casual spot? The lines between fast food and fast casual are increasingly blurred, especially in the age of advanced ordering technology, delivery services, fancier dine-in booths, and marketing that focuses on fresh ingredients.With Thrillist’s fast food awards, The Fasties, coming up, we realized we needed to finally put this extremely important, admittedly specific question to bed.

"Our business model was virtually outlawed overnight" Trenary told Insider. None of Golden Corral's nearly 500 locations were allowed to open dining rooms in the early days of the pandemic, and "there were some dark days," he said.

Fast food and fast-casual brands across the country have optimized drive-thrus over the last year as they became crucial in the age of COVID-19. Drive-thru orders have grown across the fast-food industry since the pandemic closed many dining rooms.

Drive-thrus have been up industry-wide because they are perceived as a "safe way to use the brand" Kalinowski Equity Research founder Mark Kalinowski told Insider.

Even chains that aren't typically associated with drive-thrus are hopping on the trend. Drive-thrus have been a "lifeline" for Krispy Kreme, the chain's CMO told Insider, and salad chain Sweetgreen plans to open its first drive-thru this year.

Surprising Side Effects Alcohol Has On Your Liver, Says Science

  Surprising Side Effects Alcohol Has On Your Liver, Says Science If you drink 2 to 3 alcoholic drinks a day, here are a few surprising side effects that alcohol has on your liver. And for even more helpful drinking tips, be sure to check out our list of 108 Most Popular Sodas Ranked by How Toxic They Are.Read the original article on Eat This, Not That! 1 Alcohol can cause fat to build up in your liver. © Provided by Eat This, Not That! women drinking wine © Provided by Eat This, Not That! women drinking wine Excessive alcohol drinking can cause two different types of alcohol-related liver disease (ALRD) that can be detrimental to your health.

graphical user interface, website: Golden Corral © Golden Corral Golden Corral

Golden Corral also embraced another pandemic-induced trend: alcohol. The chain was initially resistant to add alcohol to its family-friendly image, Restaurant Business Online reported, but as alcohol sales increases across the country Golden Corral came around. The chain partnered with Icee and Coca-Cola to sell frozen drinks like a Jack and Coke Icee.

The pandemic "forever changed how consumers think about dining out," Trenary told Insider. He thinks the changes made over the past year will attract new customers because of the convenience, while loyal fans are already beginning to return.

Do you have a story to share about a retail or restaurant chain? Email this reporter at mmeisenzahl@businessinsider.com.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Where you can order groceries online with an EBT card .
Want to know which grocery pickup and delivery services accept food assistance benefits (SNAP)? We're following shifts in federal benefits programs and grocery stores’ policies to keep you informed on where you can order groceries online using an EBT card.Participants in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, better known as SNAP, can pay in store at most major grocery chains — including "specialty" grocery stores like Whole Foods and Trader Joe's — using electronic benefits transfer cards. But, until last year, EBT wasn't a widely available payment option online. Now, through the expedited expansion of an online purchasing pilot program run by the U.S.

usr: 1
This is interesting!