CHANDLER, Ariz. — Local diners "craving" to have a variety of culinary options available in one place will soon see their wish granted in Chandler.
Crave Hospitality Group, an Idaho-based company, is planning this spring to open up one of its commercial kitchens in the East Valley and offer several different restaurant menus out of one location.
Known in the culinary world as a "ghost kitchen" or "virtual food hall," Crave's concept allows consumers to order dishes from a group of professional chefs working under the same roof.
Patrons could order a pizza from one chef, a salad from another, and have it all packaged together for home delivery.
“The layout of the building is set up with multiple kitchens with a central conveyance system serving a central packaging and delivery area,” Crave's planning documents state.
The Chandler City Council approved preliminary plans on Thursday for Crave to build its next location in a 15,000-square-foot building near Cooper and Germann roads.
Though Crave's kitchens don't operate like a traditional restaurant, the company claims it can offer a safe dining option for residents still wary about the pandemic.
Crave kitchens typically have a conveyor belt that runs down the center of the building, allowing for finished dishes to move straight from a kitchen suite to the Crave workers who will deploy orders for delivery.
“Crave has partnered with world-renowned chefs to bring high-quality food to this community by operating a delivery, pickup, and sit-down experience,” the company wrote in planning documents. “Crave maintains control of the food from preparation through delivery with all delivery drivers employed by Crave.”
The company said it's in the process of finalizing which restaurant partners will work out of its Chandler location.
Crave was founded in 2019 by a group of tech and food entrepreneurs who wanted to improve how restaurant-quality food could be delivered to customers.
“The model needed to be reimagined,” co-founder Devin Wade said in 2020. “Ours was designed from the chef and restaurateur’s perspective with a shared responsibility for customer satisfaction.”
Last year, Crave opened up its first kitchen in Idaho, which houses 16 restaurant partners from a wide variety of culinary backgrounds. The company hopes to have its Chandler location ready by early spring and is preparing to open other locations across the country.