It wasn't long ago that you had to look up the definition of "fast casual" to understand the meaning of this original restaurant concept that is a combination of quick service and traditional sit-down eating experiences. Not only is fast-casual food delivered in a speedier, high-quality dining experience, but fast casual restaurants have also been in the fast lane of growth.
Most consumers understand the value that fast casual brings to eating out. And certainly, fast casual has built its own identity in an arena with more than 13 million people employed and more than $580 billion in sales.
Fast Casual Magazine considered over 650 restaurant concepts, eventually paring the list down to just 100. Top contenders include Chipotle, Panera Bread, Pei Wei, Jason’s Deli, and Five Guys.
The list, which has ranked fast casual restaurants for the past five years, listed Naples Flatbread & Wine Bar at No. 97. The list noted this unique restaurant concept with 2 locations “combines the best elements of fast casual, casual and fine dining with counter service at lunch and full service at dinner. Its upscale interior features a waterfall with an HDTV shining through at the bar, and a Woodstone Pizza oven is seen by guests as they walk in the door. In addition to Neapolitan pizza, grilled panini and gourmet macaroni and cheese, the menu features 40 wines by the glass and more than 30 craft beers.”
“A fast casual concept is one that creates a unique value and quality experience, with gourmet-level food or drink, that delivers an interior that wows the guest, all at a price that is driven by value”, according to Fastcasual.com’
“We are flattered to be part of the Top 100 and to be even mentioned in the same conversation with Panera, Five Guys and Pei Wei”, stated Ralph Desiano, Flatbread’s Founder and CEO. “I am blown away that our little concept has garnered so much attention.”
Other Florida eateries to make the list include Pizza Fusion of Fort Lauderdale at No. 4, Lime Fresh Mexican Grill of Miami at No. 12, Evos of Tampa at No. 75, Salad Creations of Coconut Creek at No. 85, The Cheese Course of Weston at No. 93, Firehouse Subs of Jacksonville at No. 6 and The Loop Pizza Grill or Jacksonville at No. 9.
For more information on Naples Flatbread & Wine Bar call (239) 495-3528 or view the full menu and additional details at www.naplesflatbread.com or visit www.fastcasual.com to view the complete list of contenders.
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