The future looks bright for the Smiling Moose Rocky Mountain Deli. The Colorado-based fast casual is gearing up for unprecedented growth with a new menu, revamped store and logo design, and a streamlined approach to operations.
“What’s that next step that’s going to allow us to differentiate ourselves? I think when the concept started back in 2003, it was really ahead of the curve,” says CEO Sue Daggett, who joined the Smiling Moose two years ago; before that, she was a regular customer. “We took our time really getting it right. We first and foremost, drew on the culinary trends and the guest experience. … We were also focused on operational execution and improving that.”
But better does not always mean bigger. As part of the menu overhaul, the Smiling Moose cut 27 SKUs, which improved efficiency. Guests used to have a choice between 13 breads for their sandwiches. Now the focus is on creating the best flavor combination for each menu item. Customers can still customize their order, but without the heavy cost of a dozen alternative bread options.
The guiding focus for these and other new items was on elevating sandwich staples to a new level. For example, the Smiling Moose did a creative take on the traditional tuna salad sandwich with its Wicked Wasabi Tuna: house-made tuna salad, avocado mash, tomatoes, cucumbers, and arugula served on ciabatta with wasabi mayo. And a grilled chicken sandwich is reimagined with a spicy kick in the Wildfire Chicken—grilled chicken with melted Provolone, avocado mash, and tomatoes served on a baguette with house-made sriracha-lime mayo.
Read the full article from QSR Magazine here.