Austin’s newest culinary venture presents a tremendous opportunity for local restaurants and food business owners. Atlanta-based Prep ATX will open a 55,000-square-foot commercial kitchen campus in North Austin in April, creating the largest multifunctional kitchen community in Texas.
Prep ATX is located at 1300 E. Anderson Ln. And has a large number of approved cooking areas, including 42 private kitchens, 16 communal kitchen stations and 16 parking spaces for food trucks. The company is committed to hosting a range of food and beverage companies, including startups and food truck operators, caterers and bakers, ready meals, and consumer product manufacturers.
Prep ATX also offers a central inspector’s area for outside restaurant owners who need a little more space to cook and prep. In total, Prep ATX expects the facility to support more than 200 local jobs in the food sector.
Although Prep ATX has not yet released any information about which members of food and drink have joined the facility, a company representative confirms that it has pre-sold 50 percent of its memberships throughout the property.
“Our current members are a really great mix of local caterers, bakers, CPG, specialty and food trucks,” said Drew Barrett, director of Prep ATX. “We have some members who are restaurants that need more space, including some ghost kitchens, and some national venture capital companies. One of Prep’s core values is to support the Austin community. We therefore look forward to promoting expansion and growth. “
The Austin kitchen facility is Prep’s first location outside of Atlanta to house the 150,000-square-foot campus – the largest in the Southwest, according to the company. It makes sense that Prep, named one of Inc.’s 5,000 fastest-growing private companies in 2020, picked Austin as its first growth spurt. It’s likely the company can build a similarly robust business here as the hotel industry in central Texas continues to grow despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
Prep worked with the City of Austin and the Austin Chamber of Commerce on local expansion. This came at a time when pandemic restrictions and safety concerns have forced many local restaurants and business owners to get creative just to stay afloat. Understanding that many Austin food companies are turning to, or starting out with, a ghost kitchen model, Prep ATX aims to target such entrepreneurs with its central station, a special place where third-party delivery services can pick up customer orders. The common lobby area also offers dining seating and a terrace offers outdoor dining areas. The massive open kitchen also offers space for pop-up events and cooking demos.
“Prep will be a great addition to the Austin area food and beverage industry, giving local culinary entrepreneurs access to affordable, license-ready commercial kitchen space and flexible size options as businesses grow,” said Charisse Bodisch, senior vice of the Austin Chamber President of the economic development. “Prep will also create many food and beverage jobs with diverse qualifications in the area. We look forward to welcoming Prep to Austin as a fantastic addition to the local culinary scene. “
Hoping to prove that there aren’t too many chefs in the kitchen, Prep ATX provides a shared workspace for networking, providing members with resources such as ongoing education, training, mentoring, sourcing, sales opportunities, and access to capital that can help optimize their business.
“Building on what we did in Atlanta,” said Mitch Jaffe, CEO of Prep, “we look forward to leveraging Prep’s infrastructure and resources to accelerate the creation of new businesses and the scaling of existing businesses in the region and to consolidate Austin further. ” as one of the best places in the country to set up culinary ventures. “