Burger King, perpetually stuck in the number-two fast-food burger chain slot, has made a surprising and shrewd move into the delivery business. It first tested the service in a few major cities -- New York, Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. -- and recently expanded its delivery service to Colorado, specifically the location at 16850 East Illiff Avenue in Aurora. And more delivery stores are planned for stores in Denver, Arvada, Englewood and Centennial.
Your move, BK competitors. There are some obvious bennies for both the chains and the customers if other fast-food restaurants decide to venture out into the urban jungle with delivery drivers -- hopefully armed with GPSs and able to properly count back change. Here's my list of the top five fast-food restaurants that should consider delivery service. We got the money, honey, if these restaurants have the time.
See also: - Denver's five best homegrown, fast-casual chains -- from Noodles to Chipotle - Taco Bell's "Cantina Bell" menu may make Chipotle a little nervous - Panera Bread's cafe menu needs to rise to the level of its bread
5. Fazoli's People love the eff out of Fazoli's, and with good reason: This fast foodish/fast casual-ish Italian-in-a-hurry chain provides bins of spaghetti and red sauce and bushels of breadsticks to fiending customers, both in the stores and at the drive-thrus. Something about the combination of incredible cheapness and those butter-soaked, garlic-salted breadsticks grips customers in their stomachs and souls equally. The dream of having Fazoli's create a fleet of delivery food trucks to bring the pasta and bread to every small town, suburb and urban center in the U.S. is one that has lived in my heart for years now, awaiting fulfillment. Hell, I'd even settle for Fazoli's hiring a Jeep driver to hurl breadsticks in my yard so I can go all Pac-Man on 'em....and drop off buckets of spaghetti and meat sauce next to the mailbox for a reasonable fee.
4. Starbucks "My kingdom for a white chocolate mocha latte with two percent, easy whip!" I exclaim on most weekdays, and I don't think for a hot second that I'm the only Buckies addict who hasn't had vivid fantasies about Starbucks implementing a nationwide delivery network of fast-moving, coffee-carrying delivery drivers on scooters -- hopefully including a few nice-looking, eye-candied guys with ear plugs, dreds and broad shoulders --available 24-7 via phone call or online order. I am realistic about how the mechanics and manpower of this dream fleet would be problematic and expensive, and if Starbucks was to take this step it would undoubtedly bring the already-jibed-at prices for coffee drinks up to a new level of "wow--really?!," but in all honesty there are days where I would pluck the gold fillings from my teeth for a chance to sit at my house, in my jammy-jams like a lazy, self-indulgent wretch and have someone bring me a hazelnut macchiato with extra hazelnut -- and one of those little Buckies box lunches with the tiny wedge of Brie in it.
3. Long John Silver's When the urge for fried fish planks -- and handfuls of those crispy crumbs -- hits, there never seems to be a Long John Silver's anywhere within a twenty-mile radius. And that's unfortunate, because while a-fish-ionados can go to any local tavern/pub/full-service restaurant and enjoy a basket of fish & chips, sometimes you really just want a great big grease-soaked box filled with the saltiest fried seafood on the planet so you can soak everything down to the hushpuppies with those little packets of vinegar and hasten your own demise, one Langostino lobster bite at a time, without having to go outside and deal with people, animals, shrubbery or sunlight. Delivery service, especially long-distance, would certainly garner support from LJS's current customer base of suicides and online gamers, but would also bring the fried-fishery a whole new crowd of folks who won't mind paying a healthy stipend to eat the unhealthy goodness that constitutes most of the menu, with the added bonus that customers will be able to smell the fish grease on the delivery drivers long before they arrive at the door.
2. Taco Bell Night time is the right time for drinking heavily, making love, enjoying a fat bowl, and making a run for the border -- figuratively speaking on the last one, and not necessarily in that order. It would be downright thoughtful (and extremely opportunistic) of Taco Bell to help out its customer base by offering a delivery service that provides enchiritos, gorditas, churros and whatever Dortitos creation it outputs next to legions of drunk, stoned, really hungry fans. Given the condition of those customers,Taco Bell could even limit the service to evening/nighttime delivery and skip trying to recruit daytime delivery drivers.
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SHOW ME HOW
1. McDonald's Some McDonald's restaurants in China have been offering delivery service -- sometimes via bicycles with hot/cold boxes on the backs -- for years, and the more recent advent of 24-hour McDeliveries has definitely made China cooler than the U.S. But McDoos has mostlystayed away from deliveries in this country. Now Burger King is doing it, though, which is a surprise because usually BK is working on things that McDonald's did several years prior with moderate, doppleganger-y successes -- and it would be downright shocking to see Burger King beat up the golden arches with something McD's offers only in severely select markets like some uber-populated areas of New York City, by going to nationwide burger and fries delivery. I'm calling you out here, McDonald's: Your execs better get up off their McAsses and expand delivery -- otherwise, you will end up the number two fast-food burger chain in the U.S.