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The Chef Chronicles

ChefChronicles blog The Chef Chronicles

What’s it like to run a kitchen? Why do so many chefs and restaurant operators talk about putting in 80 to 100 hours a week? And what drives them to keep doing it?

We at Munchery have a team of top-flight chefs who lived that life and survived to tell about it. And they’re doing it in a new series called “The Chef Chronicles.”

To get those stories and relay them to Munchery customers and all food lovers, we’ve engaged the veteran music journalist Ben Fong-Torres, famous for his work at Rolling Stone magazine and for being depicted as himself in the Golden Globe-winning film, Almost Famous.

Why Ben? For one thing, he’s a Munchery customer himself. He tried us back in May 2013, and has been ordering at least once a week ever since.

And although Ben, who’s also a columnist with the San Francisco Chronicle, a radio DJ and an Emmy-awarded TV broadcaster, is known primarily for writing about entertainment, he’s also contributed to Gourmet, Food & Wine, Bon Appetit and other food publications.

Through this series, readers will learn about the people who are preparing their Munchery meals, and what it’s like making food for delivery to thousands of busy, hungry people every weekday.

Ben, who plans on a Chef Chronicle every two weeks – his same schedule at Rolling Stone and the Chronicle – will visit chefs separately, and in a relaxed environment – that is, away from the workplace. “Drinks may be involved,” he said. Each profile will introduce the chef, offer high (and low) lights in their training and career, and seek answers to a question they often ask themselves: Why do they keep doing it?

“It’s going to be fun for anyone who’s curious about Munchery, restaurants and food,” says Ben. “My first visit was to Scott Newman, who I met when he was the drummer in an all-chefs band. That was years ago, but he’s still cooking, still rocking, and making connections between creating meals and music. Thanks to Scott, the series is off and rocking.”

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Be Healthy, Be Happy: We’re Gluten Free!

GlutenFree BlogHero Be Healthy, Be Happy: Were Gluten Free!

You told us you’d love more gluten-free options on the Munchery menu: we listened—and delivered!

We know how important it is to enjoy great food that fits both your mood and your dietary needs, so we’ve been working hard to provide everything you need to be 100% gluten-free.

Going gluten-free is now deliciously simple with our Munchery menus. You’ll find fresh flavors and creative combos to please every palate—including at least two gluten-free main courses every day, plus great sides and desserts.

From comfort food classics to cutting-edge culinary innovations and exciting global specialties, every Munchery dish is handcrafted by top local chefs using the season’s freshest ingredients. And to make sure you enjoy the best-ever baked goods, we have our own gluten-free pastry chef—so you can eat healthy, be happy, and love every bite.

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How We Built the Munchery Delivery Team

1X6A5326 Edit Edit Edit How We Built the Munchery Delivery Team

As a follow up to a recent blog article about the role of service workers in the fast-growing tech economy, I wanted to take this opportunity to explain Munchery’s approach to our delivery team.

For the first few months of Munchery’s history, I was our only delivery driver. Looking back, it was a fantastic experience. I interacted directly with our customers and used what I learned to improve the product. I also developed a deep appreciation for the role drivers play: They are the face of our company. And in many cases, they are the first thing customers think of when they think of Munchery.

I can’t overstate the importance of this, and we try never to lose sight of it when thinking about our operations and the customer experience we provide. We strive to treat our drivers the same way we treat our chefs, engineers, and the rest of our team. This is illustrated by four facts:

1. Our drivers today earn an above-market wage. While we are in a competitive business where prices matter, we do everything in our power to leverage technology and our scale to create efficiencies which enable us to offer reasonable prices to our customers and fair compensation to our drivers.

2. We classify drivers as employees, not independent contractors. This means that like any other Munchery employee, drivers who work more than 30 hours a week are eligible for benefits programs including health, dental, and vision insurance. This also means that they are eligible for protection under our workman’s comp policy, eligible for overtime and sick pay, and that we contribute to a medical reimbursement account on their behalf under the Healthy SF program.

3. We offer fun perks. All Munchery employees, whether drivers or otherwise, receive credit for free Munchery food and an employee discount.

4. We actively look to promote our highest performing drivers. Our SF operations manager (who oversees 150+ drivers) started as a driver. The same is true of two of his direct reports, both of whom are currently in management positions.

We’re always looking to build our delivery team. I’d love to invite anybody interested to apply here: https://munchery.com/jobs/

If you have any questions about how we approach this, email me at tri.tran@munchery.com.

All the best,
Tri Tran
Co-Founder

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Everything Under $10: A Toast to 1 Million!

1MillionMeals blog Everything Under $10: A Toast to 1 Million!

 

We’re thrilled to announce that we served our millionth meal this week! As a toast to the occasion, we’re offering every item on the menu for under $10 for the next 10 weeks. We’ve come a long way since the early days, and we couldn’t be more grateful to everyone who’s helped us along the way.

It’s been quite the ride from our first meal—pan-seared halibut with tzaziki sauce that cost almost $20—to our millionth. As we’ve grown, we’ve instituted stringent quality control standards and we’re now able to buy the finest, freshest, sustainably sourced ingredients in much bigger batches. So, your next order will cost significantly less than where we started, but taste just as good—if not better!

Munchery started out with a very personal goal: to feed Tri and Conrad’s families better. We’ve quickly expanded to making a positive difference in the lives of other families, our chefs, our employees, and even the food supply system. We’ve got a lot to celebrate and we hope you’ll join us.

Cheers!

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Eating Better with Nutritional Tracking

jawbone Eating Better with Nutritional Tracking

 

We’re proud to announce an exciting new partnership with Jawbone that will make it ridiculously easy for you to track the nutritional data of your Munchery meals on your Jawbone UP app.

Now, when you order from Munchery, detailed nutritional data will be securely transmitted to your Jawbone UP app. If you don’t own a Jawbone UP band, we highly recommend that you go out and pick one up. Using your UP app, you’ll be able see exactly what goes into each Munchery meal, from calories to carbs to fiber. In addition, we’re including our gorgeous photography in your UP feed, so you can have a visual history of what you ate on Munchery.  Check out this page to learn how to connect your Munchery to your Jawbone Up

Today’s announcement is the beginning of a partnership that will bring together Munchery’s technology with Jawbone’s wearables ecosystem. We’ve always felt a strong kinship with the talented team at Jawbone, especially with their focus on delivering an exceptional user experience to drive health and fitness. There’s a bright future ahead with Munchery and Jawbone working together.

Finally, I want to thank our Munchery culinary and engineering teams. Our new capability to quantify mountains of nutritional data from a daily changing menu is the culmination of a year-long effort. It would have been easy to estimate a calorie count and slap it on a meal – this is unfortunately all too common in our industry. Instead, we took up the challenge to measure, record, and audit every ingredient we use. Transparency rules.

This is just the beginning. Munchery is going to make it even easier for you to make decisions based on your dietary needs. We’ll have more to share soon. Stay tuned!

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On-Demand Launches in San Francisco and Seattle!

munchery ondemand 1024x485 On Demand Launches in San Francisco and Seattle!

Introducing On-Demand Delivery

You asked and we listened. We are proud to announce that starting today, you can place an order anytime in the evening and get it delivered in a snap.

On-demand delivery launches in San Francisco in a few selected ZIP codes (94110, 94114 and 94117 – Mission and Castro districts, Bernal Heights, Haight-Ashbury) and we will expand coverage soon.

With on-demand delivery, you can conveniently order anything from our vast menu between 4-8PM and have it delivered within 20-40 minutes. You will also receive an ETA at the time you place the order. If you want to plan ahead, you can still schedule a delivery within a guaranteed 1-hour delivery window.

Munchery Seattle is Open

In addition, we are delighted to let you know our Seattle service is now live! The Emerald City is our first market expansion outside of the San Francisco Bay Area. Both on-demand and same-day delivery options are available throughout the Seattle downtown areas (ZIP codes 98101, 98104, 98121, 98122, 98144), with additional ZIP codes coming soon.

To celebrate the grand opening in Seattle, we’re making the first entree for every new order complimentary for the next 2 weeks. Just use code SEATTLENOW by 7/29/14 (one per household, valid only in Seattle).

iphone ondemand On Demand Launches in San Francisco and Seattle!

 

A new version of the Munchery iOS app is also available for download starting today. This new version supports both Seattle service and the new on-demand capability, along with multiple other enhancements.

Give Food, Get Food

Like Munchery? Help us get the word out on Facebook and Twitter. Tell your friends and family in Seattle. For every new friend who places an order, he/she would receive $10 credit to try us out. You would also get $10 credit for referring that friend.

Thank you for your support!

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