Everything We Know So Far About Chick-Fil-A's New Virtual Food Brand

With the emergence of COVID-19, ghost kitchens took America by storm. According to Roaming Hunger, restaurants that pop up on Uber Eats and Doordash with no physical location require ghost kitchens — which are facilities where the food is actually made. Don't mistake this style of restaurant for virtual brands, though. Virtual brands are digital food concepts that are available through online and in-app orders only. Virtual restaurants, meanwhile, are when existing restaurants use their kitchens to tack on additional delivery-only menu items. Thanks to a growing reliance on delivery, these business models have flourished in the past year, and you shouldn't expect either to disappear anytime soon.

Chick-fil-A plans to deepen its grasp on this style of food service by launching its very own virtual brand. According to QSR Magazine, the restaurant plans to launch a delivery concept kitchen named Little Blue Menu in Nashville later this year, with an Atlanta location opening its virtual doors in 2022. Chick-fil-A filed the trademark for a brand called Outfox Wings on May 4, to the cheers of chicken lovers everywhere. Just don't expect this unique item to hit physical Chick-fil-A stores. For now, the item appears to exclusively grace Little Blue Menu's app.

A digital Chick-fil-A revolution

While this news proves exciting, you have to wait for even more details to emerge. According to QSR Magazine, the new virtual brand features wing items, but beyond that, the word's still out on what the final menu looks like. Little Blue Menu enters a crowded wing market as it stands, as a handful of dedicated restaurants, like Wingstop, maintain a stranglehold on the market, while other virtual brands have popped up in the last year to address consumers' needs for wings delivered to homes. Top that off with the fact that Chick-fil-A currently faces sauce and ingredient shortages, and you end up with a dicey environment to launch a virtual brand in.

Either way, keep your eyes peeled for the launch of Little Blue Menu later this year. If you call Nashville home, get ready to get your wing game on and try out the menu once it hits delivery app service. With any luck, this emerging virtual brand can prove it has what it takes to hold its own and come out on top with winning chicken products.