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New Jersey: Wonder restaurant opens in Westfield

May 01, 2023

For three years, Wonder trucks, where chefs finished fast-fine dining dishes in front of a customer's home inside the truck while readying it for super-fresh and piping-hot hand delivery, were all the rage with foodies in Westfield and beyond, as the business served 100 towns.

So, Wonder staff guessed that its first New Jersey brick-and-mortar restaurant, which opened on June 1 at 210 S Ave. W. in Westfield, would be popular.

What they didn't guess was that on its second day of business, more than one order would be placed every minute during the first two hours of dinner service. Or, that so many delivery orders would be placed that Wonder staff at all levels stepped up to drive meals to customers' homes, including Wonder founder and CEO Marc Lore, who made deliveries himself to customers that weekend.

Wonder offers fare from 12 restaurant concepts designed by celebrity chefs and inspired by renowned eateries through its mobile app. New to the operation, customers can order from several Wonder restaurant concepts at once, allowing each family member to dine from their chosen concept. More than 50% of Wonder's Sunday orders utilized this new benefit.

The restaurant follows the first-ever Wonder restaurant on the Upper West Side. About ten more locations in total will open throughout 2023, located in both New York City and New Jersey, likely in Union, Bergen and Essex counties.

Earlier:Idling vans from new meal delivery service raise concerns in Montclair

"We loved the vehicles, but we figured out a better way to do it," said Wonder chief governance officer Andrew Gasper. "Once we figured out the technology and started testing it in a brick-and-mortar, we learned all of the things we could unlock. Our quality was already very high, but we could make our food taste even better and be more efficient in a brick-and-mortar."

Plus, unlike Wonder's previous operation, customers can now pick up their eats and also dine-in at the 20-seat restaurant. It also offers lunch now, in addition to dinner.

Restaurants headed by celebrity chefs that are working with Wonder to offer their recipes include Bobby Flay Steak; Di Fara Pizza of Brooklyn; Fred's Meat & Bread of Atlanta, Georgia; and Barrio Café of Phoenix, Arizona. Eight more restaurant concepts will soon join the Wonder offerings, including those that feature burgers, poke bowls and sushi.

Earlier:What's up with those Wonder food trucks? They're restaurant meals, cooked up at your curb

"We canvased the country thinking, ‘What's a great Mexican restaurant?’ and ‘What's a great steakhouse?’ " said Gasper. "Then, we partnered with those chefs to bring that experience to the home."

Wonder collaborates with chefs to learn how to replicate their iconic dishes for takeout orders, bringing acclaimed restaurants across the country to Westfield residents’ tables – no outside delivery person required.

All delivery is accomplished by in-house couriers, which Gasper said allows Wonder to be more efficient and get food to a customer's home as soon as it's cooked. Wonder's Westfield location delivers to Westfield, Garwood, Fanwood, Winfield, Scotch Plains, Cranford and Clark; and parts of Plainfield, Mountainside, Kenilworth and Springfield.

"We can get the food to someone's house at basically the same time as the food trucks if the order was large," said Gasper. "The larger that one order got, the more that one person in the vehicle had to do this balancing act. Now, we don't start cooking the order in our location until are sure a courier is ready to go."

Go: 210 S Ave. W., Westfield; 855-818-5755,

Contact: [email protected]

Jenna Intersimone has been a staff member at the USA TODAY NETWORK New Jersey since 2014, after becoming a blogger-turned-reporter following the creation of her award-winning travel blog. To get unlimited access to her stories about food, drink and fun, please subscribe or activate your digital account today.

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