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August 3, 2023

How a Digital Transformation Doubled Order Capacity and Boosted Speed of Service at Tacos Padre

Situated in one of London's oldest and largest food markets, Tacos Padre operates exclusively during lunch hours yet manages to crank out nearly 800 orders in a single day using Fresh KDS with Lightspeed.


Service Type



Jubilee, London United Kingdom

POS Used

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About Tacos Padre

Tacos Padre, founded by Nicholas Fitzgerald in 2017, is a lively taqueria offering a delicious selection of tacos, Mexican small plates, margaritas, and mezcal. Inspired by his captivating travels in Mexico, Nicholas opened the first permanent brick-and-mortar in 2019 within London's ever-bustling Borough Market.

In 2021, Ben Dargue joined the team as General Manager, focusing on optimizing operations and maximizing volume. Despite the high demand, Ben recognized the potential for improvement, particularly in enhancing Padre's kitchen efficiency and order processing capabilities.

“The only way we were going to get more capacity was with a better system.”
Ben Dargue | General Manager of Tacos Padre
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Paper Limitations

Prior to deploying Fresh KDS with Lightspeed, the establishment relied on a traditional paper ticketing system, which proved to be burdensome and time-consuming. This outdated process often led to missing or misplaced orders, causing unnecessary stress and hindering productivity for the staff.

Recognizing the need for change, Ben sought a technology solution to streamline their workflow and tackle these challenges head-on.

The first change was moving to a faster, more efficient POS: Lightspeed. While satisfied with the speed of the POS system itself, he encountered usability limitations with their in-house kitchen display system.

Determined to find a better and more optimal solution for his restaurant, Ben collaborated with Josh Lobelsohn, a Strategic Account Manager at Fresh KDS, who guided him on the digital transformation.

Excelling With Simplicity 

Fresh KDS pairs seamlessly with the Lightspeed POS system, making it a viable option for Tacos Padre. It also offers the flexibility for customers to use their own hardware. Ben explored his options for sourcing in the UK with the help of our team.

Despite slight variations in the available options compared to the US, he quickly recognized the immediate benefits of implementing Fresh KDS.

“It is basic in a good way” – a common need for many high-volume restaurants.

The Padre’s General Manager emphasized the significance of maintaining a familiar ticket appearance:

“It was super important that [digital] tickets looked like the [physical] tickets people were used to seeing.” 
Ben Dargue | General Manager of Tacos Padre

He further commended Fresh KDS for its intuitive and simple interface, mentioning the ease of use for all staff members. Notably, even team members with language barriers could utilize the KDS due to its straightforward design. 

A Recipe For Success & Speed

Ben found the overall integration and setup process of Fresh KDS with Lightspeed simple. Although the Lightspeed POS had a slight learning curve, configuring Fresh KDS to function like a printer was quick and hassle-free.

Initially relying on a mobile Wi-Fi connection, Ben later opted to hardwire three display monitors to accommodate the fast-paced environment of the taqueria.

The shift from paper-based ticketing to Fresh KDS brought remarkable improvements for Padre. By eliminating the manual tasks of moving tickets, spiking old receipts, and reducing paper waste, the business witnessed an immediate increase in speed of service and nearly doubled its order capacity. 

This technology-driven transformation has propelled the taco shop to new heights, effectively handling peak hours and experiencing a substantial increase in weekly revenue.

Tacos Padre now sets new benchmarks for operational excellence, solidifying its position as a leader in the industry. 

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