Sacramento January 2016 : Page 113

Tinder for Food What can’t you do with an app these days? Three app-based companies new to Sacramento deliver restaurant food right to your front door. Here’s a look at what each company offers. BY JORDAN VENEMA Postmates This San Francisco-based company founded in 2011 and funded by venture capitalists quickly spread its services to more than 75 cities nationwide. The on-demand company delivers virtually anything, from batteries to restaurant food, through a network of scootering, biking and driving couriers called postmates. (Like Uber and Lyft drivers, they are independent contractors.) Postmates delivers from any restaurant that offers takeout, arriving in less than an hour. But some local restaurant owners have com-plained about the service, claiming it jeopardizes food safety and quality. The Rind in midtown no longer allows Postmates or other third-party companies to order its food. The delivery fee begins at $5 and increases based on delivery distance. Like Uber, Postmates uses blitz pricing, raising rates during peak hours. Postmates also adds a 9 percent service charge to the purchase price but doesn’t tell you the total charge until delivery. (post-mates.com) Delivers from: INSIGHT COFFEE ROASTERS, GRANGE, TOWER CAFE, ROXIE DELI restaurants, with delivery fees ranging from $1.99 to $6.99, plus an 18 percent service fee. Like Postmates, Caviar delivers within the hour. But unlike Postmates, it provides the total fee at the time of order. Customers can preorder up to seven days in advance. (trycaviar.com) Delivers from: OSCAR’S VERY MEXICAN FOOD, FEDERALIST PUBLIC HOUSE, LIQUIDOLOGY, THAI CANTEEN FoodJets FoodJets is the newest player in the game, but in some ways it’s a seasoned veteran. Before he founded FoodJets, Sacramento native Darren McAdams started Food to You in 1993. FoodJets offers a limited menu: typically three items for lunch and three items for dinner, prepared by local restaurants. The com-pany delivers in less than 10 minutes and texts customers so they can meet the driver at the curb. The delivery fee is included in the online price, and the food arrives in a Prius decked with little airplane wings and a rudder. Because the company just launched, service is mostly limited to midtown, East Sac, Land Park and Curtis Park, but McAdams plans to spread soon to neighboring cities. (foodjets.com) Delivers from: A ROTATING LINEUP OF PARTICIPATING RESTAURANTS Soda Without the Guilt GABRIEL AIELLO ENJOYS HIS BOURBON WITH GINGER BEER , but the Caviar Also based in San Francisco, Caviar started in 2012 and now serves more than 20 cities, including Sacramento. Unlike Postmates, Caviar has agreements with the restau-rants from which it delivers, meaning Caviar’s menu is more limited. Caviar’s menu represents more than 25 Sacramento PHOTOGRAPHY BY CARL COSTAS FoodJets/Gordito Burrito: Rachel Valley health-conscious Preservation & co. employee wanted a more natural mixer without the heavily processed sugar. So Aiello began creating his own sodas, calling the line Burly Beverages. “I’m trying to keep it as completely natural and unprocessed as possible,” says the burly, bearded Aiello. “Most of my sodas are under seven ingredients.” Aiello sweetens his products with local honey, maple syrup, agave syrup or Sucanat, a variety of whole cane sugar. In addition to ginger ale, root beer, sarsaparilla and other sodas, he makes old-timey vinegar-based switchels and shrub syrups in unique flavors like pomegranate-pink pep-percorn, lemon-jalapeno and black plum-elderberry. They aren’t just for kids: Switchels and shrubs make great mixers for adult beverages. The ginger-molasses switchel, which Aiello compares to a liquid gingersnap cookie, is now his go-to mixer with bourbon. “If you’re going to drink your alcohol with a mixer,” asks Aiello, “why not with some-thing that has benefits?” The crowd-funded Burly Beverages offers more than 20 products that are sold at Preservation & co. (1717 19th St.). Aiello also sells his drinks by the glass every other Monday night at Old Ironsides during the vegetarian pop-up dinner Meatless Monday. (burlybeverages.com) —JORDAN VENEMA l January 2016 SACRAMENTO MAGAZINE 113

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