The Panera Bread at 213 Burlington Road officially opened on May 8th. While the store was originally set to open May 1st, some last minute tweaks were made. As previously reported, the Bedford location is a totally new concept for Panera Bread and they wanted to make sure things were set up correctly.
While the new store has traditional cash registers, it also boosts 7 self service "Fast Lane" Kiosks, where you can order in person or pick up an online order. What's interesting about the online and Kiosks ordering is the ability to save your preferences or duplicate a previous order. So if you only want mustard on a Roast Turkey sandwich, you just need to specify that once. Along with dine in and take out, the restaurant also offers delivery as well as catering.
The delivery area includes most of Bedford as well as portions of Billerica and Burlington.
The new restaurant also has a bakery right across the hall. This is staffed with overnight bakers who do the baking on premises.
Along with the traditional Grand Opening ribbon cutting, the new Panera Bread also had a breaking of the bread ceremony.
This new Panera Bread Takeout & Delivery concept seems to be designed for speed in order to quickly provide breakfast and lunch as well as dinner home meal replacement to nearby workers. It will be interesting to see how they do and compete against the more "traditional" sandwich shops.