Celebrity chef Michael Mina believes he has reached the pinnacle of dining technology in his new Silicon Valley restaurant: The first-ever two-story-high rotisserie.
“It has capacity to do a whole cow or a whole ox,” he said on the phone yesterday. “I need some of the tech people to just come look at the control panel of this thing — it’s unbelievable.”
The mother of all meat cookers occupies Mina’s Bourbon Steak & Pub at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, designed to be a blockbuster restaurant at the new 49ers stadium. With about $1 million investment in the enormous cooking contraptions alone, it’s also a splashy technological effort in mass producing food for the new 68,500-seat stadium.
“It’s like we designed a whole new computer,” he said. “One side of it has 22 sticks. We can do 57 ducks at the same time.”
Don’t you also have an app?
“An app, yes, I don’t know that much about the app,” he said, before describing a contraption that can cook 70 large dungeness crabs at the same time or the 500 pound pots that have to be lifted by cranes. “But let me give you to Patric about the app.”
Patric Yumul, president of Mina Group, hopped on the phone.
“It’s kind of a fantasy app,” he said, of the game called Fantasy Flip.
The app, which only works on phones while in the restaurant, has a bank of questions. Players earn points for guessing right, ordering food, or sharing their meal experiences on social media (dread of dreads). Prizes include free lunch or a football signed by famed former quarterback Joe Montana.
“An example question would be like, ‘How many yards will the Seahawks rush this Sunday? Over a hundred?'” Yumul said, laughing to himself. “No, they really won’t. But that kind of question.”
By the time Yumul was done, Mina had left the call. But I got a follow-up email.
The rotisserie can handle 95 chickens!