Stacked: food well built has officially opened its first restaurant on May 31, 2011, in Torrance, Calif. The secret ingredient behind keeping quality and service high and prices low for the 160-seat, 6,300 square-foot restaurant is the use of proprietary software integrated throughout the restaurant from operations and the kitchen to iPads at each table. Guests will be able to design their meal and order from their tableside iPads or can choose to order more traditionally via an attentive server. They can also store their menu favorites and order in advance for faster service when they arrive.
“At STACKED, the guests become the chef, creating their own meals with an almost magical electronic menu infused with proprietary software which allows them to direct the efforts of the kitchen team and control the cost and speed of their meal,” says Paul Motenko, co-founder, Stacked Restaurants, LLC. “We are not replacing good service with technology. Rather the iPads serve as a tool to dramatically improve the dining experience for our guests while enabling us to keep menu prices down.”
Customizable menu options
The Stacked menu is built around America’s favorite foods -- burgers, pizzas, salads, and sausages -- with a quality and range of ingredients that rivals what is found in pricier, casual dining restaurant settings. Guests will be able to design their order in a create-your-own menu format, or choose from creative signature items built around flavors from across the world.
“We wanted to create something entirely new in the restaurant industry -- a ‘Fast Casual Plus’ dining segment that would really give our guests the unprecedented ability to control their own experience,” says Motenko. “Today, people want great food and attentive service but not at unreasonable or exorbitant costs. Our guests will have the luxury of designing their order to include exactly what they want and how they want it prepared, and then pay for only what is ordered.”
Stacked’s menu, replete with scores of topping, sauce and preparation options, will engage the guest’s inventive natures. If guests prefer to build their own burger, rather than choosing one of Stacted’s inspired signature dishes, options include certified Angus beef, chicken, turkey, salmon or a vegetarian burger. To “stack” their burger, they can select from four different buns, and dozens of cheeses, toppings and sauces that range from garlic aioli and Wasabi mayo to caramelized onions and roasted peppers. Guests can also choose to stack pizzas, sausages or salads with a similar number and range of toppings. Also on the menu are beer and wine, plus signature and customizable shakes and ice cream sandwiches. Sides include sweet potato fries, onion strings, fries, and coleslaw. The kid’s menu features mini burgers, hot dogs, chicken tenders and mac’n cheese.
Dining room environment
Designed by Jordan Mozer and Associates of Chicago, the architecture and interior design of Stacked is inspired by the re-invented, urban manufacturing buildings favored by fashion designers, sculptors, photographers, filmmakers and young chefs. The restaurant design is composed of equal parts of raw practicality and surreal imagination. The facade features raw, hot-rolled steel accented by lacey industrial steel sash with a collage of saturated glass windows in orange, red and amber. Door pulls have been hand-carved and cast in recycled magnesium-aluminum alloy and acid-washed.
Guests will dine on slabs of solid maple with booths framed in raw structural steel and finished with wood and heavy tooling leather fastened with copper nails. Furnishings include heavy duty cabinets with massive industrial hinges. Finishing touches include hand-blown light fixtures, and an expansive, abstract mural wall that extends the creative culinary side of the dining experience.
Two additional locations are planned for Fashion Valley Mall in San Diego this summer and Los Cerritos Center in the fall.