Paul, Annabelle and Jimmy, at this stage, one stood down and the others on the verge of losing their business came up with a crazy idea to pull Adelaide's hospitality industry together and find a solution for what was looking like, at the time, a six month long shutdown.
On the 23rd of March 2020 Chefs on Wheels was born. Our city’s best restaurants and talent jumped on board to recreate their restaurant quality food as ready-made meals for people to enjoy at home whilst in lockdown.
We had no idea if the food would translate to being cooked in restaurant kitchens, packed by and delivered around the state, and would people even want restaurant quality food at home? The answer was an overwhelming yes!
Within hours of launching, we had to turn the website off and catch our breath - we’d taken hundreds of orders and it was showing no sign of slowing down …
By May 2020 we’d sent out over 4,000 orders, collaborated with the best in the industry and people went mad for the food! But then it was time for SA’s restaurants to reopen as life was somewhat returning to normal ...
We agonised over whether or not this incredible business was just a successful COVID pivot and if we should even continue past restrictions and we decided to let Chefs on Wheels customers decide our fate. We asked over 3,000 of them - the answer was a resounding yes! Chefs on Wheels was here to stay.
One year on we’re still showing no signs of slowing down but things look a bit different ... Restaurants have reopened, chefs went back to work and more importantly we all got some freedom back in a new COVID normal world.
To continue Chefs on Wheels we had to once again adapt the business model. Paul decided not to return to Botanic Gardens Restaurant (one the hardest decisions of his life) and with Annabelle & Jimmy they’re on track to turn their little COVID startup to one of the largest independently owned ready made meal companies in Australia.