There have been many foodie hallmarks of the COVID-19 pandemic. One of the most prominent has been borne out of the restrictions imposed on restaurants. It is, of course, the meal kit. Yes, it has to be said meal kit delivery services such as Hello Fresh, as well as takeaway deliveries, have seen a huge uptick in their demand, but it's the creative restaurant meal kits that have been peaking consumer interest.
Restaurants meal kits are nothing new, of course, we covered the first wave back in March, but since then there has been an influx in the range on offer. From simple "finish in the oven" pies to full bore hands-on tasting menus, and from home comfort classics to niche global flavours - the variety is almost endless.
In addition, delivery logistics have never been better, which means that more and more restaurants are offering statewide and even nationwide delivery. Meaning that customers can sample dishes from some of the country's best restaurants at the click of a mouse button. So it's time to unpack the paper bag, turn on the oven, rip open the vac-packed sauce and get cooking with restaurant meal kits.
There are, of course, a whole load of delivery choices when it comes to your daily meal. There are established companies such as Deliveroo and Let's Eat and some restaurants have set up their own delivery solutions (sometimes the folk that cooked the food!). Both have their advantages and disadvantages. To combat the fees charged by larger companies and offer economies of scale, small scale aggregator sites have started to pop up. Basically, these sites combine a few local restaurants and offer delivery. This gives the customer a larger choice and helps keep delivery costs low. These were first seen in NYC during the last lockdown, but since then a more and more have turned up on the scene.
If you want to experience food from some of the very best restaurant kitchens around, it needn't be a full-on tasting menu. Top restaurants kitchens are crafting comforting menus ready to be cooked at home with classics such are tarte tatin, pea soup and even chicken curry. These include home meal kit with crudités, duck confit and blackberry fool from Kitty Fishers, Chef Adam Handling has a range of cook-at-home meal kits featuring lobster, wagyu beef and tarte tatin from Frog, even Made in Olstead are offering weekly changing meal kits featuring comforting classics such as pork encroute, turbot gratin and sticky toffee pudding from The Black Swan.