The Local Culinary’s new initiative helps restaurateurs

A Miami restaurant group is helping restaurateurs hit hard by the pandemic—and taking its innovative concept across the country.

The Local Culinary‘s virtual restaurant franchise model has signed five new franchise agreements across three states in the last 30 days. This week, the organization announced it will waive all initial fees for new franchisees through the end of the year, in an effort to further support independent owners seeking relief from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Based on the success we’re seeing with our current franchisees participating in the program, as well as new challenges we anticipate restaurants will face this winter, we wanted to offer a truly risk-free opportunity to join our program, waiving initial franchise fees for those who come onboard by the end of the year,” said Alp Franko, founder of The Local Culinary. “We are passionate about helping independent restaurants survive the pandemic, while also setting our partners up for long-term success to thrive in a very competitive industry.”

The two-year-old business introduced the virtual restaurants franchise in July, allowing independent restaurants to incorporate the company’s made-for-delivery brands into their existing kitchen spaces and operations, adding to their menu offerings and expanding their customer bases almost overnight. Growing both locally and nationally, The Local Culinary helps independent restaurants deliver modern, chef-driven concepts to new markets. Joining the six existing franchisees in Florida, The Local Culinary’s brands will now be implemented into the existing kitchens of independent restaurants in San Francisco, CA, San Jose, CA, San Mateo, CA, New Orleans, LA, and New York City, NY. As the demand for food delivery services continues to rise, restaurants are now looking for options like this, in order to capitalize on the industry’s evolution and increase revenue.

In the cooler months ahead, outdoor dining is set to decrease, and food delivery services will continue to rise in demand. To help restaurants prepare for the slower months, The Local Culinary is waiving the $50,000 entry fee for its ghost kitchen franchise model through the end of the year.  Restaurants who sign on as a franchisee of The Local Culinary can maintain their existing brand name, space and operations, simply adding on with services that complement their offerings.  They receive on-site training from the company’s chefs, exclusivity in their territory, assistance in optimizing their kitchen for delivery and tablets to field orders. In addition, the franchisees receive qualitative and profit-driven brands with well-studied menu engineering.

“Our franchisees are seeing an instant return on investment, noting sales are up by 15 or 20 percent on average after coming onboard,” said Franko. “We are committed to working with each restaurant owner and operator to create a strategy that works for them, adjusting the model to address the varying consumer demands in each of these new areas.”

For information on franchisee opportunities, contact Alp Franko at alp@thelocalculinary.com.

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Drew Limsky

Drew Limsky



Drew Limsky joined Lifestyle Media Group in August 2020 as Editor-in-Chief of South Florida Business & Wealth. His first issue of SFBW, October 2020, heralded a reimagined structure, with new content categories and a slew of fresh visual themes. “As sort of a cross between Forbes and Robb Report, with a dash of GQ and Vogue,” Limsky says, “SFBW reflects South Florida’s increasingly sophisticated and dynamic business and cultural landscape.”

Limsky, an avid traveler, swimmer and film buff who holds a law degree and Ph.D. from New York University, likes to say, “I’m a doctor, but I can’t operate—except on your brand.” He wrote his dissertation on the nonfiction work of Joan Didion. Prior to that, Limsky received his B.A. in English, summa cum laude, from Emory University and earned his M.A. in literature at American University in connection with a Masters Scholar Award fellowship.

Limsky came to SFBW at the apex of a storied career in journalism and publishing that includes six previous lead editorial roles, including for some of the world’s best-known brands. He served as global editor-in-chief of Lexus magazine, founding editor-in-chief of custom lifestyle magazines for Cadillac and Holland America Line, and was the founding editor-in-chief of Modern Luxury Interiors South Florida. He also was the executive editor for B2B magazines for Acura and Honda Financial Services, and he served as travel editor for Conde Nast. Magazines under Limsky’s editorship have garnered more than 75 industry awards.

He has also written for many of the country’s top newspapers and magazines, including The New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Miami Herald, Boston Globe, USA Today, Worth, Robb Report, Afar, Time Out New York, National Geographic Traveler, Men’s Journal, Ritz-Carlton, Elite Traveler, Florida Design, Metropolis and Architectural Digest Mexico. His other clients have included Four Seasons, Acqualina Resort & Residences, Yahoo!, American Airlines, Wynn, Douglas Elliman and Corcoran. As an adjunct assistant professor, Limsky has taught journalism, film and creative writing at the City University of New York, Pace University, American University and other colleges.