Forest Restaurant aims to find a local niche in the food delivery market | local news

Hot dog lovers will likely recognize Jamie Ohler – more commonly known as “Papa O” – from his sausage stand at The BackYard on Forest Road and the phrase “Welcome to the Dog House!”

What people may not know is that he runs Papa O’s Pizza Shoppe at 17980 Forest Road, Suite D, which opened earlier this year.

While throwing pizza, Ohler has more cooking in the kitchen.

Ohler said people are familiar with GrubHub, Uber Eats and DoorDash and said they all have a great concept of getting food delivered from area restaurants. But he added that he thought it was too expensive for the consumer.

“You don’t know if you are going to get the right food all the time. The drivers are independent contractors who have no idea what is going on. There is no real accountability for these individuals,” he said. “So that’s part of some of the problems I’m going to fix with what I’m doing here.”

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Ohler’s new Papa O’s Chow Zone, with the website papaoschowzone.com, launched last week. It combines the concept of an online delivery service with a virtual kitchen, or “virtual kitchen”, which is a food service company that serves customers exclusively by delivery and pick-up based on phone and online order.

“A great concept,” said Ohler. “When I started all of this, I said do you know what? Wait a minute, what if we switch this whole game up a bit? Both are great opportunities in their own right. But what if we create a brand in our own right with Papa O?”

The online platform offers several food sellers, all of which are Ohler-owned and individually operated, including Burger Barn, Wing Warehouse, Pita Palace, and Salad Garden, among others. Food is cooked in the kitchen at Papa O’s Pizza Shoppe on Forest Road.

Ohler said the concept gives customers more choices.

Candice Mayhew said being able to choose between different foods is perfect for her family of five. She also enjoys walking into the store and being greeted by Ohler with the song “The Mayhews!”

“The delivery service is great and very helpful when I order food for my grandmother,” she said. “She says it’s always hot.”

The new work style is the best thing since slicing bread, said Jimmy Murphy, a customer, who eats Papa O’s four times a month.

“Just thinking about ordering different styles and flavors of food from just one place is great,” he said. “You can please the whole family by just ordering from one place with express delivery too, and you don’t have to deal with traffic that’s a plus.”

Ohler allows other local businesses to be a part of it, too, noting that he can cook their food and deliver it to customers.

Currently, the business does not charge any delivery fees. Ohler said he hopes this will entice people to better instruct their drivers, who are also Ohler employees, not independent contractors.

“I don’t want to deal with you on delivery charges. It’s none of my business,” he said. “I don’t want to be someone who makes money just from deliveries. Take care of my driver, we’re good to go.”

Ohler said he thinks it’s the only local business that does this type of online ordering and delivery.

“All I do is take what works out there that the community really loves, Uber Eats, GrubHub, Ghost Kitchen concepts, and I’m just saying, OK, it all works great, but what are the flaws in these supermodels? I’m going to fix them and I’ll do it under our brand.” Commercial. So it changes the game a little bit, but it’s the game that’s really being played. We’re just modifying it a little bit,” he said.

Agent Scott Moses said he enjoys Chow District because of its many offerings.

“Personally, I go there often because the service is of a high standard,” he said. “Jimmy’s passion for his work and serving the community is always a fun experience.”

In order to keep food fresh and hot, Ohler will only serve within a five-mile radius, but that seems to be fine for many customers.

“I am so excited about this amazing location where my family can order all our favorite foods, pizza, pita, cheese sticks and hot dogs in one place,” said customer Carla Wilkes-Rose. “I am out of the delivery area, but I am happy to receive my order. The ordering and payment process was very simple and easy to carry out.”

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