The health crisis has inevitably changed the consumption habits of the entire planet. Also, or above all, in the hospitality sector. Before the pandemic, consumption in the premises itself accounted for 80% of the sales and income of restaurants. Today, according to figures released by Circana -consulting firm specializing in consumption-almost 33% of restaurant turnover is already based on ‘take away’ (food to go) and ‘delivery’ (to home), while consumption in the premises itself is barely 67% of the business. And this change in consumer trends in the hospitality industry has led chefs with Michelin stars such as Dabiz Muñoz, Dani García, Eneko Atxa, Quique Dacosta, Ricard Camarena or Pepe Solla to pick up the gauntlet and take their haute cuisine creations home with you. A new business model for restaurants that already means millionaire income for chefs ‘gifted with stars’.
According to the data provided by Circana at HIP (Horeca Professional Expo 2023), held at Ifema from March 6 to 8, restaurant revenues in 2022 improved by 30% on those of 2021 and rose to 37,600 million euros. Still far, in any case, from the more than 40,000 million before the pandemic, in 2019. By category, the expense that is made in delivery, they take it home, stands at 7.5%, while the take away, food to go, is at 25.2%. Thus, consumption in the dining room is at 67.2%. Figures that contrast with those offered by this same consultancy, formerly NDP Group, for the year 2019, the health crisis had not yet broken out, when 80% of restaurant income came from consumption in the restaurant itself.
And it is that one of the main novelties that the pandemic brought with it was the promotion of take-out food services at home. Many restaurants, of all kinds, from haute cuisine to neighborhood taverns, launched into this type of business and, in many cases, it was not temporary or temporary, but rather here to stay. An option that, in view of the figures, users also welcomed very well and that they implement and use, not only in their day-to-day life, but also at special times such as Christmas, anniversary celebrations or other events.
Faced with this new form of consumption, the great chefs could not be left behind. And that some of the great ‘potatoes’ of our gastronomy, in this case one of the most ‘classic’ in avant-garde cuisine, did not see it very clearly. In the middle of the pandemic, Pedro Subijana spoke with La Información and before the jump to delivery of some of our most renowned chefs, such as Quique Dacosta or Dabiz Muñoz, he did not hesitate to ensure that the gastronomic proposal that can arrive at your home to enjoy it in the living room It is not comparable and you will never reach the experience of attending a three Michelin star restaurant ‘in situ’, which, basically, is like attending a theatrical performance, in this gastronomic case, which must be enjoyed “live and in direct “. “Our dishes are ephemeral, created instantly, and do not withstand transport well. There will be people who do well with this concept of take-away food or take it home, but it is not our case,” the chef stated. Akelarre from San Sebastian.
But, as time has shown, perhaps Subijana was wrong. And if not, ask Dani García, the three-star chef from Marbella who has just now made the decision to take his food delivery brand, La Gran Familia Mediterránea, into physical space and has just reached a global agreement of collaboration with Carrefour, which will allow you to buy your delivery dishes in person at the establishments of the French hypermarket giant.
“There was a great obsession with delivery since confinement,” says Dani García about the origin of La Gran Familia Mediterránea, a project that emerged in September 2020, upon detecting an important business opportunity in the home delivery channel. And in barely three months the Dani García group knew that it had hit the key, since it had a turnover of 950,000 euros between October and December of that first year. Now they do not share business figures, but industry sources speak of several million euros a year, although turnover has not yet reached double digits.
The truth is that García, who closed his three-Michelin-star restaurant in Marbella to reinvent himself when he was at the top of Spanish gastronomy, now brings his original and exquisite creations directly to diners’ homes. The Great Mediterranean Family, already present in six Autonomous Communities, is an alliance between the chef and food delivery platforms such as Just Eat, thanks to which specialties such as oxtail brioche, chicken croquettes can be eaten from the sofa at home Leña Style roast, Mac and cheese with four Mediterranean cheeses, yogurt or Nutella ice cream with bacon, popcorn and caramelized hazelnuts or even tuna tartare with stracciatella or pickle salad.
With GoXo, Dabiz Muñoz, considered the best chef in the world by the Best Chef Awards 2022, created in 2020 a food delivery restaurant in Madrid and Barcelona, he also has different ‘food trucks’ spread throughout Madrid, Barcelona, Canary Islands or Marbella. Dabiz Muñoz continues to bet on getting his creations to the doorstep of gastronomy lovers. And according to the accounts presented to the Mercantile Registry, GoXo bills 5.6 million euros a year, compared to 7.79 million for its traditional restaurants such as DiverXo and StreetXo.
Other great names such as Pepe Solla or the Valencians Ricard Camarena and Quique Dacosta (five Michelin stars) also created their food delivery division during confinement. Dacosta offers with its brand QDelivery dishes at home from the menus of several restaurants of the group such as the Valencian Llisa Negra, Vuelve Carolina and Mercat Bar.
One of the last to get on the takeaway train has been the Basque Eneko Atxa, distinguished with five Michelin stars (three in his Azurmendi restaurant, one in Eneko Lisboa and one in Eneko Bilbao). Three months ago, Atxa opened DeBokata, her first sandwich shop, at the Radisson RED Hotel in Madrid. A tribute to street food, focused on delivery and take away thanks to its alliance with the Just Eat platform.
Given this normalization of consuming the proposals of these prestigious chefs from home, the Ruiz platform and La Tasqueria de Javi Estevez. In total, the company is present in 22 Spanish cities and has proposals for up to eight Michelin stars. In short, the new way of ‘eating out’ for the Spanish has captivated the great stars of Spanish cuisine.