SpoonRocket, the Y Combinator-backed startup that hopes to provide healthy, fast, and cheap meals to hungry customers, is now available in San Francisco. Or at least, part of San Francisco, for a few hours a day.
The startup launched last summer in the East Bay, offering up meals for $6 each before taxes and tip. The service is also designed to be ultra-fast, delivering food generally within 15 minutes of an order being placed on its website or through its mobile app.
How does it do that? To start, SpoonRocket has a limited number of options to choose from every day — just two, in fact. And its meals are actually kept in heaters that are driven around in SpoonRocket-owned vehicles, making sure they’re delivered hot and fast to people who order them.
It’s been pretty successful in its initial markets, and is now delivering thousands of meals a day. And so it’s time to expand.
Before you get too excited about SpoonRocket’s entrance into San Francisco, however, there are a few caveats: First, it’s only available in the SOMA neighborhood to start. That’s great for TechCrunch’s core audience of downtown engineers, but it’s kind of a bummer for the folks who live and work pretty much anywhere else in the city.
Second, the service is only launching with lunch for the time being. So hungry folks in SOMA who don’t have other lunch plans between 11:00 and 2:00 will be able to use the service. (Usual hours in the East Bay are between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 a.m.)
I tried out the service today just to see what it was like. SpoonRocket generally offers one vegan or vegetarian option and one heartier, meat option every day. Today I got to choose from:
- Homestyle Stuffed Meatloaf – ground beef and pork with bell peppers and carrots layered with imported swiss cheeses and marinara sauce, mashed potatoes, garlic green beans
- Wild Mushroom Stir Fry With Seared Tofu – shiitake, crimini, oyster and button mushrooms, carrots, celery, sweet peppers, scallions, bean sprouts, seared tofu, soy-chili sauce, forbidden black-jasmine rice
I ordered both, just to test them out, and was amazed to find that the food was delivered within seven minutes of ordering. About two minutes before delivery, I got a phone call alerting me to pick up the food from a car outside. I walked out, and was able to grab my meals immediately.
The food itself was pretty good, and actually a great value considering it was only $6. Considering I regularly eat meals at my desk, it’s likely that I’ll be using the service frequently on days that I can’t get out of the office.
Anyway, for SpoonRocket, launching in just one particular neighborhood of San Francisco and expanding from there follows what it’s done on the other side of the Bay Bridge, which has been fairly successful. Starting out in just Berkeley and Emeryville, it later expanded to Oakland and Albany. The company plans to add more neighborhoods and longer hours over time, as demand scales.