Capriotti’s, now armed with a newly acquired chain, announced plans to open 30 new Capriotti’s shops and 30 Wing Zone locations.
No Wing Zone franchise deals were announced in Capriotti’s original Delaware territory. Wing Zone’s closest location is in Bowie, MD.
Capriotti’s got its start on Union Street in Wilmington but has long been based in Las Vegas, the home of co-founder the late Lois Margolet. Delaware and Vegas remain the largest markets in a nationwide footprint.
The company is now owned by Las Vegas resident Ashley Morris, who has brought in restaurant veterans to help build out its franchise system.
A southern Delaware Capriotti’s location is in the works. No word on the location, but coastal Sussex has several fast-growing areas
Capriotti’s would like its franchise owners to open Wing Zone locations and vice versa. In addition to its namesake, Wing Zone offers burgers.
Capriotti’s has more than 100 locations, while Wing Zone has 30 stores in the U.S. and an equal number of international franchises. The international focus of Wing Zone will give Capriotti’s insights into expanding overseas and in the Americas.
Thanks to a big carryout business, Capriotti’s weathered the pandemic. Its top sandwich remains the Delaware-developed Bobbie, a Thanksgiving meal on a sub roll. The company still plans to have 500 stores eventually.
A challenge for Capriotti’s is getting the right roll for its offerings. Picky Delaware residents have noticed differences in out-of-town Bobbie’s, steaks, and other specialties.
Additionally, Capriotti’s staff can’t simply lay on the cold cus. Turkeys for Bobbies have to be roasted daily.
LongHorn SteakHouse has signed in the ground.
A sign is in the ground for a new LongHorn Steakhouse on Concord Pike in north Wilmington at the site of Romano’s Macaroni Grill.
That means construction should get underway soon on the restaurant that had the typical Covid-19 delays. The Romano’s building, while not that old by Concord Pike standards, was razed.
LongHorn, like other chains, has been tweaking its layout to take into account to-go orders.
The mid-priced chain is part of the Darden restaurant empire that includes Olive Garden, Bahama Breeze, Cheddars, and higher-end steak establishment Capital Grille.
After standing pat for more than a decade with its one location in Bear, LongHorn is in an expansion mode, with a new restaurant in the chain mecca of Dover and now north Wilmington.