Why is Shuttle Such a Diverse Place for Authentic Foreign Food?

How does the Shuttle team choose the partner restaurants which it lists on the Shuttle Delivery website?

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When Shuttle was first formed in Seoul as two separate companies 3 years ago; it had a hard time convincing restaurants to join the service. There were a lot of difficult negotiations because the restaurant owners didn’t trust a bunch of guys delivering their precious creations all over town. We had no reputation, clout, respect or standing in the community since nothing like this type of service existed before. So many restaurant owners had a very tenuous relationship with us at the beginning.  So we had to work hard to gain their trust, so our customers would eventually have the best selection of restaurants in the city!

screen-shot-2017-01-29-at-1-29-23-amEven now we only deliver for restaurants that have made the formal choice to join us; because we only want partners who really want to work with us. We know this type of relationship will translate to an overall better experience for our customers, as well as a way to simplify the ordering process. We also get a administrative fee from our restaurant partners, which helps us keep the delivery fee costs to our customers lower. It’s so important to really vet restaurant partners in order to choose the ones which are the best fits for our delivery system.

screen-shot-2017-01-29-at-1-28-39-amWe have learned from operating this business for this long that there are certain pillars of the food delivery world that people really need.  All other types of cuisine are nice but the pillars have to be available so that customers will be fully satisfied with their ordering experience.  The 6 top pillars of our food delivery service include Thai food, Mexican food, Pizza, Indian Food, Chicken, and Burgers. We knew if we structured our food options around these pillars, we would have more satisfied customers. These pillars are still our top sellers but people like variety which is why we have all these different partners for our customers to choose from.

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We really wanted to be known for the most delicious, authentic and diverse array of restaurants in town. So we started working extremely hard to recruit the most knowledgeable eaters in Seoul.  Friends of ours who we knew ate out a lot started us off in the right direction but then as we grew as a company, we hired team members to actively search through all the blogs, review sites, etc. to add the most liked restaurants on those. “Restaurant Buzz Seoul” was a very influential group for us because it features a lot of very passionate foodies with a lot of strong opinions.  We usually go with the policy even now that if one restaurant is getting at least 5 reviews then we will send a business development agent to negotiate a contract with the restaurant.

screen-shot-2017-01-29-at-1-30-46-amFinally we had to trust our consumers. We would hear a lot of mixed reviews about certain restaurants which we were skeptical about recruiting but we eventually allowed them to join our roster in order to give our customers more choices.  We learned that this was much better than not allowing the restaurants with mixed reviews, and only allowing partners with stellar reviews.  As a result more customers began to learn about new favorites, and we now offer over 200 restaurants for delivery in Seoul! We had to allow our customers to dictate the breadth of choices on Shuttle Delivery.  We take a lot of pride in being a company made by foreign food enthusiasts designed for the local Seoul foreign foodie. We are members of the community so we will never rest in order to make sure that this same community gets the best variety of delicious foods possible.

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Shuttle Delivery vs 3rd Annual Route 66 Chili Cook Off

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Recently Shuttle Delivery was invited to the Annual Route 66 Chili Cook Off. This was the 3rd Annual Route 66 Chili Cook Off: Sponsored by Berentzen. They have had more participants and attendees every year since its launch in 2013. 1st place chili takes around 350,000, 2nd 150,000, 3rd a bottle of Berentzen liqueur. Cook-off participants donate 60,000 won for the pot, which allows the winners to receive their compensation after the competition from that pot. Tickets were 25,000 won for attendees. Route 66 limits the amount of tickets sold at around 60 – 70 attendees so it’s best to move fast on buying tickets in order to get a spot. Tickets for the Cook Off sold out in less than 24 hours this year.

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Most people have such an endearing affection for Chili, which is why the amount of enthusiasm has increased exponentially since the launch of the Route 66 Chili Cook Off. There are so many kinds of chili with varieties that vary depending on the make, and spice levels. There are meat only versions, as well as veggie, and vegan among others. The Cook Off participants just bring their best chili with enough for attendees to sample and Route 66 provides the bowls, onions, cheese, and sour cream.

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Route 66’s intent was to find the best chili makers in Seoul to make some of their favorite batches and see who would reign supreme. All while giving the attendees a chance to gather in one place to peruse the different styles and enjoy a few bowls of some mighty fine chili.

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Last year’s 2015 Chili Cook Off, Route 66 hosted 12 different varieties from 12 different participants, and this year there were 12 participants again but more attendees. 2016 saw many types of chilis; there was lamb, vegan, a bacon chipotle, a pulled pork chili, a super spicy chili, a meat combo chili, and others. The winner for the 2016 3rd Annual Route 66 Chili Cook Off: Sponsored by Berentzen was Chuck Chun from Cali Kitchen, with his very nice Braised Short Rib Chili! Shuttle Delivery came up a little short this year but still winning 3rd place. Ryan Philips was representing Shuttle Delivery for this event; and for our first outing, we had to be proud of the results of at least placing 3rd out of 12 participants.  But rest assured that Mr. Philips guarantees he won’t be satisfied with 3rd for next year and wants to win it all next year.

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Ryan Phillips has taken on a great Kitchen Consulting position with Shuttle Delivery recently and he has been very integral for Shuttle Delivery’s future plans for ready-made microwaveable premium delivered meals. Shuttle Delivery and Ryan are working out the kinks of this project to hopefully launch it full-scale sometime soon.  Maybe his delightful chili will be one of the offerings he provides customers with once those ready-made microwaveable meals are available for delivery. He has proven to be a very capable and exciting chef with a ton of energy. We believe with the help of Ryan Philips, Shuttle Delivery will continue to innovate how Seoul residents enjoy their meals.

 

Happy Holidays to Our Shuttle Family and Furry Friends

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The Christmas season is upon us and with this extremely busy time of year, let us not forget our special family members on our holiday shopping list—our pets. What are the best gifts for our pets? Let’s admit it. Most pets hate wearing clothes. While Christmas sweaters are extremely cute on our furry friends; there are some other gifts to consider like toys, beds, feeders, snacks, and food.

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Especially Food! Pets deserve delicious food this season. We as pet owners do whatever it takes to ensure that we are providing the healthiest food possible for our pets. Food that we can trust and feel confident feeding to our pets. Dry and wet recipes, treats, grain-free options and more; there are many brands here in Seoul that your pet will love, while consuming the nutrients your pet needs.

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It’s hard to know where to start when choosing a pet food that best fits your furry family member. What ingredients should we look for? What ingredients should we avoid for the pet foods we are looking at? What’s up with the raw feeding phenomenon? Thankfully, the team here at Shuttle studied some blogs to see the skinny on the pet foods available in Korea.  The studies we found show that over 70% of pet people surveyed  don’t know what’s in the food they give their pets. Thankfully, knowing what’s in our pet’s food will help maintain the safety of our dogs and cats. Now we have information on the internet which helps people understand what goes into pet food so we can make safe, healthy decisions for our best friends.

holiday-foods-dangerous-for-dogs-and-cats-from-pets-best-pet-insuranceThe wrong combination of ingredients can lead to serious health issues and concerns like digestive tract problems and allergic reactions. The pet experts interviewed by Research.com all agreed that food with bad ingredients can even lead to our pets suffering from bad mental health and stress. According to one of those experts quoted in the study, “If not healthy and feeling good the pets cannot focus or concentrate.” It makes sense, especially if you think about your pet’s diet compared to your own: in general, healthful meals make us feel better, and junk food makes us feel, well, like junk. It’s the same for our little friends.

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Some good healthy premium brands of pet food sold here in Seoul include Blue Buffalo, Taste of the Wild, and Orijen. These brands are rated heads and shoulders above the rest but are very expensive here in Seoul. Theses particular brands are much more expensive than they would be in the United States but there are still some more fairly priced alternatives that you may be familiar with like tidy cat, science diet, and purina. There are also some good Korean products available as well.  Among Korean pet food suppliers in 2012, China had the largest market share (27 percent), amounting to $30.2 million, followed by the United States (26 percent), France (17 percent), and Thailand (11 percent). The remaining 19 percent was divided among many countries. There is expected to be a continued growth in demand for pet food resulting from increased income and popularity in pet ownership, especially dogs. Dog treats registered the fastest current value growth of 8 percent. So you will see that more products are rapidly arriving, as Korea is gaining more enthusiasm for pets every year.

Here is a good site to see some potential choices:

http://www.catskingdom.co.kr/shop/goods/goods_list.php?&category=007

You can also find all the premium brands on gmarket, coupang, and other korean e-commerce sites.  As we mentioned, other pet supplies are also more expensive here in Seoul but sometimes you can find a deal on delivery.  A cat litter box is $26, a bag of litter is about $15 depending on the quality, low to mid range cat food is $24 and a bag of store brand dog food is $10 if you are really on a budget.  Low to mid-grade pet products are in all the markets, with a greater variety in the local pet stores and vets. Eventually Shuttle plans to offer on-demand deliveries for pet food as well, since we have heard our customers ask for pet food delivery in the past.

But most importantly is to make sure your animals are not eating table scraps, especially during the holidays. Pets should not eat the food that we eat. It’s imperative that we stay strict with our little friends because it could possibly cause them a lot of pain if we give in to their demands.Golden retriever looking at chicken leg on dining table, close-up, high angle view

Well we hope you and your pets have a wonderful holiday season! The shuttle office loves animals and we only want the best for our customers and their pets at Christmas. Merry Christmas!

Getting a Job at Shuttle

Here at Shuttle Delivery, we get tons of questions from our users, like “What’s your favorite restaurant?” and “How many new neighborhoods will you guys provide coverage for this year?” and of course “Are you an app or are you actually a highly intelligent robot army of delivery ajjushis!?” But the question we get asked the most is, “How can I work for you?” Well first, we suggest you live in either the Itaewon Area or the Gangnam area of Seoul. Oh, and put in an application right here. Then, we suggest you read this list! It’s chocked full of pretty much everything you need to know in order to absolutely crush a highly coveted interview with Shuttle Delivery.

1. Dress Appropriately

Like most job interviews, first impressions are everything. If you walk into your interview dressed as a Sriracha Bottle, you’ve already taken the right step.

 

2. Be Ready For Anything

Working at Shuttle Delivery means being prepared for anything and everything. Can you handle the pressure cooker? Constantly looking over your shoulder for potential kimchi slaps just right around the corner! Can you perfectly stack a BLT under pressure, all while Kim Jong Un may or may not have his finger on the button…?

Oh, also, you should probably bring a copy of your resume and have some follow up questions ready for us, blah, blah, blah.

Bonus tip: You might enter a epic battle of Oregon Trail with Dear Leader, so freshen up your DOS skills.

3. Be On Time

We know this seems pretty obvious, but you should always show up at least 10 minutes before your scheduled interview. In fact, a recent study showed if you show up 17 minutes early, your chances of being hired go up by 33.7%. That study was conducted by a pizza school box… a pizza school box that’s always on time. We’ll let that sink in.

 

4. Provide Examples

While we think your Master’s Degree in Instagram is impressive, we want to get to know the real you.

How many times have you went to costco just to get the pizza and nearly finished it all on the way home?

Tell us about the time you were confident enough to order 3 sets of ttukbokki, 2 orders of Sundae and one order of mandoo at the good food stall; all while simultaneously figuring out the exact number of seconds needed to run and catch that next train on your subway stop!

If your example happens to be winning at the eternal Russian Roulette sink game of Korean bathrooms, that’ll work too.

5. Bring Snacks

Look, interviews can be a long and strenuous process. With all the waiting, hand-shaking, nodding while smiling, eye-contacting, tie wearing, lipstick applying, and question answering,  it truly can be hard to focus. For you, and for us. Scientists (Somewhere) have proven that people think better on their feet when they are not thinking about other things like eating. Snacks can help! But be warned, this interview will end quite abruptly for you, if you don’t bring enough for us too !

(P.S. we really like these!)

6. Be Well-Equipped

As we’ve mentioned, here at Shuttle Delivery you need to be prepared for anything. Will your interview be in the bowels of the Shuttle Compound with rocket ships taking off mere meters away from us? Or will it be in an air-conditioned room on a comfy couch on the 6th floor? Most likely it’ll be the latter, but you never know. Bring nunchucks (preferably boot-leg replicas from the Chuck Norris classic, “Side-Kicks”). Bring 1980’s replica papa smurf doll you found in a happy meal. Bring a paper mache soju bottle pinata.  Bring a poorly dubbed dvd copy of the 2007 Korean big budget production “D-Wars”. We could go on. But seriously bring tacos.

Seriously, don’t forget the tacos!

7. Food Puns! Food Puns!! Food Puns!!!

If we didn’t mention this yet then let us make this abundantly clear! This job can be rough on a rainy, snowy, icy day outside delivering happiness to our wonderful and thankful customers and sometimes all you have in life is a good pun. We love our puns because it helps us switch gears a bit and refresh from the daily grind.  One day two of our co-founders spent entirely too much time to come up with the puns shown on our Shuttle Kitchen menu page.  Those puns don’t write themselves so get prepared to have a little fun and write some awesome puns!  Sorry, but no matter what anyone says, puns are important.

Said no one ever! Puns are life.

8. Be Yourself

And by being yourself, we really mean be a cat. Seriously, are you a cat reading this article? Because if you are, welcome to Shuttle Delivery. We’re happy to have you on the team.

So let’s recap:

  1. Dress Appropriately.
  2. Be Prepared.
  3. Be on Time.
  4. Provide Examples.
  5. Bring Snacks (important).
  6. Be well Equipped.
  7. Make a Pun.
  8. Ignore 1-7 and just be a cat

 

Now you have all the knowledge and tips necessary to ace your interview with Shuttle Delivery. So what are you waiting for? Work for us already!

Apply Now