Automation promises to transform the food-service industry. Miso Robotics today announced its newest product line, Flippy Wings, which it described as “the only robotic chicken wing frying solution designed from the ground up for high-volume restaurants, including lead innovation partner and multi-brand restaurant company Inspire Brands.”
Buffalo Wild Wings, part of the Inspire family of brands, began testing Flippy Wings at the Inspire Brands Innovation Center this fall. Built on Miso's latest Flippy platform, Flippy Wings is designed to meet the specific needs of restaurants, particularly those that specialize in buffalo wings.
“We're incredibly proud to not only unveil Flippy Wings, but to also have an exceptional brand like Inspire share our vision of kitchen automation,” said Mike Bell, CEO of Miso Robotics. “From Day 1, Flippy Wings will cook more food with less waste and save staff for higher-value contributions.”
Miso offers restaurants RaaS
As operators look for ways to maximize efficiency, Flippy Wings can help restaurants streamline operations in a cost-effective way, said Miso Robotics. It said it offers the food-preparation system through a robotics-as-a-service (RaaS) model, giving restaurants a positive return on investment (ROI) from the first day of operation. Flippy Wings also allows restaurants to redeploy team members to more customer-facing functions, ultimately improving the guest experience, Miso said.
Flippy Wings includes an all-new AutoBin system, which provides kitchen staffers with an array of food-safe bins where products are dropped to be cooked. AI vision automatically identifies the food, then Flippy Wings picks up, cooks, and drops it off into a hot holding area, according to Miso.
Team members are able to cook more while spending less time attending to the deep fryer. The frying area is also made safer, as Flippy Wings eliminates several hot touchpoints and drastically decreases oil spillage, said Miso.
In addition, the company said its tests show a 10% to 20% overall increase in food production speeds when deploying the machine. With better rates of cook-time accuracy, Flippy Wings can “allow brands to consistently deliver unmatched quality,” Miso claimed.
“Flippy Wings fries fresh, frozen, or hand-breaded products like a pro, avoiding cross-contamination and increasing throughput while reducing costs,” said Bell. “It is fast, safer to operate than traditional fryers, and the whole system can be set up in just a few hours over existing equipment. We think team members in restaurants everywhere are going to love having Flippy Wings working for them.”
Inspire Brands readies Flippy Wings for rollout
The first Flippy Wings unit, dubbed “Wingy” by the kitchen team, is currently installed at the Inspire Brands Innovation Center in Atlanta, where the robot is being tailored and tuned to specifications. A Flippy Wings unit will be installed at Inspire's Alliance Kitchen, its ghost kitchen, to test it in a real cooking environment, before eventually making its way to a standalone Buffalo Wild Wings location next year.
“Technology is making a fundamental impact on the end-to-end restaurant operational model,” said Paul Brown, CEO of Inspire Brands. “Intelligent automation including AI and robotics will not only transform how we communicate with and take orders from our guests, but also how we prepare and serve food to those guests. This transformation will ultimately result in improved efficiencies in our restaurants and an overall elevated experience for our guests and our team members.”
Inspire Brands' portfolio includes nearly 32,000 Arby's, Baskin-Robbins, Buffalo Wild Wings, Dunkin', Jimmy John's, Rusty Taco and SONIC Drive-In locations worldwide. The company was founded in 2018 and is headquartered in Atlanta.
Miso Robotics works with other partners
In addition to Inspire, Miso Robotics has several other pilot agreements with leading national brands in place, with more partner and product announcements planned for 2021. Flippy Wings addresses a large market including major wing, pizza, sport, and family chicken brands, said the company. Miso's artificial intelligence powers products including Flippy, Flippy Wings, CookRight Grill, and its Automated Beverage Dispenser.
The company is primarily funded by individual investors and is one of the most successful crowdfund stories in history. With nearly 12,000 shareholders, Miso has raised more than $30 million in crowdfunding to date.
Miso Robotics said it is currently in its Series D round, which kicked off with a market valuation of $350 million— a $270 million increase since their $80 million Series C open. It recently passed $6 million in new investments.