NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. - As online orders surge amid the coronavirus pandemic, Chipotle is going fully digital with a new spin on its restaurant concept.
On Wednesday, Chipotle announced plans to open its first-ever digital-only restaurant that will be open for delivery and pick-up orders only. The new prototype is aimed at paving an entrance for the restaurant chain into urban areas that wouldn’t be able to support full-sized restaurants.
The digital restaurant, called the “Chipotle Digital Kitchen,” will be located right outside of the military academy in Highland Falls, New York.
Unlike other Chipotle locations, the digital kitchen will not have any dine-in areas or front service lines. Instead, customers will have to order in advance using the Chipotle website, the Chipotle app, or a third-party delivery system.
The digital kitchen will also be able to accommodate large catering orders, with a separately designated pick-up lobby.
“The Digital Kitchen incorporates innovative features that will complement our rapidly growing digital business, while delivering a convenient and frictionless experience for our guests,” said Curt Garner, chief technology officer of Chipotle.
“With digital sales tripling year over year last quarter, consumers are demanding more digital access than ever before so we’re constantly exploring new ways to enhance the experience for our guests,” he added.