Chipotle announces first digital-only kitchen in Ohio

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The digital kitchen trend is continuing to grow.

Chipotle announced that it will be opening its first digital-only kitchen in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio. Unlike traditional Chipotle restaurants, this location won’t feature any indoor dining.

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Also, customers won’t be able to place orders in person.

Instead, the restaurant will only be taking orders through the Chipotle app and website (along with various marketplace partners). As detailed in a press release, customers can place their orders online and then have the option of having the food delivered or picking it up in person.

Chipotle announced that it will be opening its first digital-only kitchen in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio. (Chipotle)

The new restaurant design, called the Chipotlane Digital Kitchen, will feature some patio seating for guests.

"Chipotlanes are a key growth strategy for the brand," said Tabassum Zalotrawala, Chief Development Officer, Chipotle. "Our portfolio of approximately 300 Chipotlanes perform with the highest margins across the board, so we continue to evolve our restaurant design with formats such as the Chipotlane Digital Kitchen to best suit our growing digital business."

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Chipotle has used the Chipotlane format to fulfill digital orders for customers since 2018. (Chipotle)

The digital-only kitchen will feature a smaller footprint than a traditional Chipotle restaurant. The kitchen will be equipped to make all the items on the Chipotle menu, however.

Chipotle has used the Chipotlane format to fulfill digital orders for customers since 2018. The restaurant in Ohio, however, will be the first Chipotle location to only take orders through Chipotlane.

Digital-only kitchens have seen a rise in popularity over the past several years. Several major brands have even experimented with taking the concept further.

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The digital-only kitchen will feature a smaller footprint than a traditional Chipotle restaurant. (Chipotle)

Ghost kitchens are digital-only restaurants that use kitchen space from pre-existing restaurants. Customers can order from a completely different menu and have their food delivered. The main feature of these restaurants is that since they don’t have any dining room spaces, they are able to operate with a much smaller footprint.

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