'Ghost kitchens' on the rise in NYC

So-called "Ghost Kitchens," cooking facilities set up for the preparation of delivery-only meals, are exploding in popularity across New York City.

Using all the kitchen equipment and facilities needed to prepare restaurant-quality meals but lacking any dining area for walk-in customers, the kitchens allow restaurant owners to serve food while saving on rent, labor, utilities and many other costs associated with an actual restaurant.

"It's not uncommon for restaurants to be paying anywhere from 15 thousand to 50 thousand dollars a month in rent," said Enrique Mendez, the owner of Stone Bridge Pizza and Salad in Midtown.

Those kinds of prices are simply unaffordable for some restaurants, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, but the ghost kitchen concept can be a much more efficient way to operate.

"We've seen a massive increase in interest in the business," said Corey Manicone, CEO and Cofounder of Zuul, a business in SoHo that has 9 separate kitchens in the same location and rents them to restaurant owners for delivery-only food.

Zuul also provides one-stop shopping with it's online technology for all types of food when you're ordering.

"In a single order you can order from multiple restaurants at the same time," Mendez said.

Celebrity chefs like Guy Fieri are also getting into ghost kitchens with delivery-only food, and it appears this isn't just a trend.

"Delivery is the fastest-growing segment of the restaurant industry," Mendez said.

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