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Breakout Brands 2017: Starbird

Revolutionizing quick service with a brand built from the ground up

The Culinary Edge, a San Francisco-based consulting firm, has been working with restaurant operators for years. So it only made sense that the firm would eventually pool its collective knowledge to create its own concept.

It’s probably not a surprise that the concept, Starbird, has become an instant hit. The first location opened last June, and the company is working to open two more.

Starbird was designed from the ground up with the purpose of “revolutionizing” the quick-service format in terms of quality, design and experience. 

“Our biggest-picture intention was to improve all aspects of the experience, from the food and ingredients to the design and the experience,” said Aaron Noveshen, founder of The Culinary Edge and the owner of Pacific Catch Restaurants. 

Starbird serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. Ingredients include free-range chickens and organic eggs. The menu includes a strong selection of chicken sandwiches, wraps and salads.

For the restaurants’ look, The Culinary Edge worked with a design firm and architects to develop the brand identity and design a space around it. High-energy music plays all day, but the selection changes based on the time of day to fit the mood. 

Then there’s the convenience factor. Starbird has used technology from the get-go. Customers can order from the mobile app and choose to eat in, take out or have their order brought to their car. Guests can also order delivery, which is done through a number of third-party services.

“When we thought about the concept, we thought about all the pain points today in fast food,” Noveshen said. “We looked at what’s broken with it — ingredient quality, culinary credibility, vibe and finally the drive-thru. It’s not a great experience. We found the best way to update that, and came up with the app.”

Breakout Factors:

• The chain prioritizes convenience by using technology from the start, making for a more unique customer experience.

• Starbird took a deep look at its branding early in its formation, and used design and architectural firms to create the right atmosphere.

All photos courtesy of Starbird.

Contact Jonathan Maze at [email protected]

Follow him on Twitter: @jonathanmaze

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