Thank you, restaurant industry, for filling a gap in the convenience longings of this thirsty millennial.
In past editions of Token Millennial, I’ve referenced brunch cocktails, burger-and-beer combos, fried chicken paired with champagne and more, so I don’t think it’s any secret that I, like many of my millennial cohorts, enjoy a good drink.
But, like many other millennials, I also covet convenience. Yes, I enjoy a leisurely meal out where I can sip my Manhattan or craft beer, but who’s got time for that? The reality is that I cook or order in most weeknights. However, that doesn’t mean I don’t want an adult beverage.
Enter the genius plan that is Mama Fu’s new beer-delivery program. The chain announced at the beginning of September that some restaurants in its hometown of Austin, Texas, will offer delivery of chilled beer. I repeat: Genius.
Through my eyes, this delivery addition looks like a win-win. Convenience-craving millennials don’t have to hit the liquor store, forgo beer or place a separate order on one of the new-to-the-market alcohol-delivery apps. And operators, who usually don’t get many drink sales out of delivery, have the opportunity to up the check average. As an added bonus, it makes the fast casual more competitive in the rapidly growing delivery market; it’s got something extra to offer that other restaurants as well as delivery-only concepts like Maple and meal-in-a-box companies like Blue Apron don’t have.
It does pose a few questions, though:
- Operators struggle with keeping hot food at the proper temperature, so wouldn’t the same apply for chilled beer? Is keeping the beer cold as simple as putting coolers in the delivery vehicle?
- What’s the process for checking IDs when the order is placed remotely? Do delivery drivers need to be trained (and trusted) to make sure the recipient is of drinking age? And often, delivery drivers are younger than 21; what’s the legality of a minor delivering alcohol?
But those small details pale in comparison to the greatness that is one-stop-shop delivery, especially for millennials (like me) who crave both cocktails and convenience. And notice that nowhere in my obvious love for this program did I mention price. Mary Chapman, senior director at Chicago researcher Technomic, summed it up for The Washington Post: “The reality is that for many people today, time is more valuable than dollars. That’s true even for people who don’t have very many dollars. And, you know, that has a pretty sizable impact.”