Kitchen 1883 may be a new platform for Kroger’s growth
Kroger, the largest operator of supermarkets in the U.S., see an opportunity to grow its share of the food business with a new restaurant concept, Kitchen 1883, which it bills as offering “a fresh take on new American comfort food.”
The first location, at Kroger’s newest Marketplace store in Union, KY, will open later next month. The restaurant will be open for lunch and dinner daily and will serve brunch on Saturday and Sunday. Kroger describes the menu as “a melting pot of American and international flavors.” The 1883 name alludes to the year that the company’s founder Barney Kroger opened his first grocery store.
“Our goal is to create a gathering place that offers a genuinely delicious place to relax and experience our food,” said Daniel Hammer, Kroger’s vice president of culinary development and new business. “The restaurant will feature a made-from-scratch menu, hand-crafted cocktails and a community-centered atmosphere.”
Kroger is currently hiring team members to staff the restaurant. It is looking for individuals who “will be encouraged to share their passion for food with guests and help create an environment focused on hospitality and quality service that is unmatched in the industry.”
Here's your first look at Kroger's new restaurant concept, Kitchen 1883 https://t.co/3XdXFk0RIF
— Dan VanOrden (@DanVanOrden) September 14, 2017
Kroger’s management is aware its competition for food purchases goes beyond other grocers. The USDA has reported that Americans now spend more on food consumed away from home than in it. With the rate of sales growth at restaurants slowing, supermarkets including Kroger, Hy-Vee, Wegmans and many others see foodservice operations helping to drive their share of total food purchases.
Rodney McMullen, Kroger CEO, told analysts on the company’s earnings call in March that he has been “very pleasantly surprised” by the willingness of customers to eat at the chain’s stores. “We believe that that will be an opportunity to grow the business and create a new leg, a platform for growth,” he said (via Seeking Alpha).
- The Kroger Co. Introduces Restaurant Concept Kitchen 1883 – The Kroger Co.
- Here’s your first look at Kroger’s new restaurant concept, Kitchen 1883 – WCPO
- Kroger’s CEO Rodney McMullen on Q4 2016 Results (Earnings Call Transcript) – Seeking Alpha
- Will burger and fitness partnerships reinforce Hy-Vee’s mission? – RetailWire
- Will Hy-Vee’s grocerant strategy set it apart from rivals? – RetailWire
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Do you think consumers are more willing to eat out at restaurants associated with grocery stores today than in the past? Does Kitchen 1883 have the potential to be a significant contributor to Kroger’s performance in the years ahead?