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Danny Meyer, the restaurateur perhaps best known for his Shake Shack chain, has invested $15 million in an e-commerce business called Goldbelly, which, the Wall Street Journal writes, “specializes in shipping favorite food items from restaurants, bakeries and other purveyors.” According to the story, it is the largest initial investment that the fund - worth $220 million - ever has made.

Among the other companies that Meyer’s fund, called Enlightened Hospitality Investments, has put money into are Salt & Straw, the iconic ice cream company based in Portland, Oregon; Joe Coffee, a New York City-based specialty coffee roaster; and Resy network, an online restaurant reservation app.

The Journal writes that Goldbelly, which started up five years ago, “has offerings from more than 350 establishments across the country, including Los Angeles’s Langer’s Deli, Pittsburgh’s Primanti Bros. and Baltimore’s Faidley Seafood. Such New York institutions as Russ & Daughters and Magnolia Bakery also are part of the Goldbelly mix.”

Meyer tells the Journal that “he first became aware of Goldbelly when someone sent him a gift of Ted Drewes frozen custard from his hometown of St. Louis via the company. The online store tapped into an ‘an idea I always loved,’ he said. ‘Which is, how do you give people the taste memory and emotional memory for what they discovered somewhere else and make it easy for them to have it wherever they may be?’”
KC's View:
I’ve spent a bit of time on Goldbelly, and I have to say that I’m intrigued … after about 30 seconds, I was hungry, and that’s a pretty good achievement for a website. There is a lot to be said for tapping into emotional memories and the visceral reactions people have to great food.

And you know what made me really happy? Seeing that Dorothy Lane Markets’ Killer Brownie is available there … because it demonstrates how this iconic supermarket company really understands the power of food.