OTTAWA — Mad Radish, the healthy fast-food chain founded by David Segal after leaving DAVIDsTEA, was forced to temporarily shutter four of its six locations in March of this year due to COVID-19. It was immediately clear to Segal that the survival of his business would depend on his ability to re-imagine Mad Radish — and not just for the short term.
Last week, Segal officially announced the expansion of the Mad-Radish brand into a family of gourmet fast-food offerings with the launch of Luisa’s Burritos & Bowls and Revival Pizza. The new structure will combine the best elements of a typical ghost kitchen with the functionality of a customer-facing restaurant, with all three offerings available for order in-store at select Mad Radish locations and for home delivery across Toronto and Ottawa.
“There’s no question the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated significant shifts in consumer expectations and consumer behaviour. And we, as a restaurant industry, need to adapt,” says Segal. “Canadians have become accustomed to getting what they want — when, where and how they want it — whether it’s delivered to your door, for contactless pick-up or in-store. We have to evolve our business to meet these changing expectations. We will still offer a great in-restaurant experience — because people will come back to restaurants — but will also provide an equally great experience wherever you choose to eat.”
Luisa’s Burritos & Bowls offers hand-crafted burritos made with fresh, internationally inspired ingredients and big, bold flavour, while Revival Pizza puts a modern and creative twist on the ultimate comfort food.
Luisa’s Burritos & Bowls is currently available at all Mad Radish locations in Toronto and Ottawa. Revival Pizza is available in-store at Albert & Metcalfe and for delivery across Ottawa, with a launch planned for Toronto in early November at the Yonge & Eglinton store. The brands have stand-alone storefronts on UberEats, but Segal sees the biggest opportunity in the company’s own app, which now offers all three menus for contactless pick-up in a single order and will begin offering multi-brand delivery in the coming weeks.
“We’ve built the menus at Mad Radish, Luisa’s and Revival to be made-to-order and built-to-travel. Everything from the ingredients we’ve chosen to the way they’re assembled and packaged has been carefully considered,” Segal says. “Throwing a meal designed to be eaten at a restaurant into a box and sending it on a 20-minute bike ride isn’t going to work anymore.”