If restaurant operators have learned anything in this last year of lockdowns, it’s the need to be nimble. While many large restaurants chains have found success during the pandemic because they were able to quickly shift their brands to fast-casual or virtual models, that approach has been trickier for full-service independent operators who tend to have less robust resources than their larger counterparts.
Many see the shift as temporary while COVID restrictions are in place. Yet, some savvy, full-service independent operators have found a way to compete by creating new variations or brands from their original menus that have the potential to live on as fast-casual concepts.
From New York City’s Stratis Morfogen to Chicago’s One Off Hospitality Group, here’s a look at some of these fast-casual spinoffs well-positioned for success while the pandemic lingers on — but also long after.