Chipotle Sets Sights on Denver-Based Pizza Chain for Expansion

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Chipotle does Naples. Photo: Pizzeria Locale

It looks a lot like assembly-line Neapolitan pizza cooked in ultra-hot ovens will be the next big fast-casual restaurant market: Chipotle yesterday announced that it'll help the Denver-based Pizzeria Locale open new locations. (The original Pizzeria Locale, which Frasca Food and Wine owners Lachlan Mackinnon-Patterson and Bobby Stuckey opened in May, will remain independently owned.)

A lot like the Umami Restaurant Group's 800 Degrees, which is angling to open in New York next year, Pizzeria Locale offers a set menu of pies ten in all but also allows customers to choose their own toppings and combinations. At the end of the assembly line is a state-of-the-art oven that cooks pizzas in two minutes flat; meanwhile, side salads are available, and the restaurant serves wine on tap.

Much like the staggered rollout of its ShopHouse concept, Chipotle will start small and city-centered with Pizzeria Locale, beginning with two test-market locations in Denver. A spokesperson tells USA Today that it's "too soon" to tell if the company will open more Pizzeria Locales in other areas of the country.

Pizzeria Locale [Official Site]
Chipotle gets into the pizza business [USA Today]
Related: Umami Restaurant Group Bringing 800 Degrees to New York Next