FISHERS, Ind. — The Nickel Plate District in Fishers features more than 150 businesses and 1,100 apartment units, and a new Indiana-based company wants to deliver food to all of them.
Room Service on Wheels just opened in Fishers, and founder Randy De John says they'll use almost any form of transportation available to deliver food to their customers as fast as possible.
"When we first thought of this concept, we wanted to get food to you really fast in a unique way," De John said. "So we got mopeds, bicycles, golf carts. (Our food) goes out fresh. Everything here is from a scratch kitchen. We try to get to you really fresh, and fast!"
This idea of combining a ghost kitchen with lightning fast service and adding Hoosier hospitality came to De John during the pandemic, when he found himself ordering food five days a week.
But he did not like what he saw.
"Forty-five minutes to an hour to get your food," De John said. "$10 to $15 in fees. And nowadays they don't even knock on the door. They just set (the food) on your doorstep and take a picture of it. Every one of our employees has a uniform. They have a name tag. They knock on your door and when you open the door, we call it 'The Plus-One,' just that personal touch that we're giving out."
After spending 37 years in the restaurant business, De John felt the densely-populated Nickel Plate District in Fishers was the perfect spot to open the first Room Service on Wheels.
"We wanted to be in a real dense area, next to a bunch of apartment buildings and office space," he said. "We've got the new Nickel Plate Trail that goes under 116th Street and goes right into the City Hall area."
And De John has a group of investors who believe in this concept.
"It is different and special in that our drivers are all employed by Room Service on Wheels, so there's an ownership that they feel," said co-owner Leslie Halkovich. "We also have chosen food that travels well and we have a short delivery radius."
"The 2.5 mile radius helps us out," De John said. "Everything in our kitchen is a scratch kitchen, so everything's fresh. Nothing's frozen. Our menu is designed for speed."
De John said he wants to open six more Room Service on Wheels locations in the next five years in central Indiana. Their lunch and dinner items on their menu, such as pizzas, burgers, wings and pastas, can best be described as comfort food.