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Eater New York reports that salad chain Sweetgreen has opened an experimental format that eliminates the front-of-the-house assembly line where patrons' salads are put together.

According to the story, "The outpost at 2 Park Avenue at 32nd Street, the first of so-called 'Sweetgreen 3.0,' instead has staffers standing at wooden podiums to take orders via tablet, which then sends the orders to a kitchen. Sweetgreen’s calling it 'concierge ordering,' though really, it’s not that different from the way that people order food at McDonald’s and other mainstream fast food chains.

"Once a salad or bowl is ready, diners’ names pop up on a screen, and they can then pick up their salad. There’s also a store portion that sells cookbooks and hot sauce, plus an upstairs portion with lots of seating. Expect some new menu items specific to this location in the future, too."

The company says the goal is to create a unit that is a cross between an Apple store and a farmers’ market.
KC's View:
I'm very impressed by Sweetgreen … and enjoyed spending some time with its director of culinary, Michael Stebner, who was on a Retail Tomorrow podcast that I recorded earlier this year. You can listen to it here.