Fazoli’s opened its new prototype location March 9 in Dayton, Ohio. The store has the potential to make or break the Italian restaurant chain’s recent growth strategy, said chief executive officer Carl Howard.
The Dayton prototype is the second of its kind to open for Fazoli’s. The first, located in Edwardsville, Ill., marked the first new company-owned location to open in five years. The restaurant is located across from the Dayton Mall.
Dayton stores like this one, which are refreshed and testing services, have seen a 10 percent increase in sales. Improvements include an updated interior design, a new service model in which food is delivered to the table and real tableware.
The company also added curbside services for its take out customers.
When Fazoli’s named Carl Howard its CEO in June 2008, his goals were to stabilize store closures and get the team growing in the same direction. A study found a drop in quality and variety, which is why in 2009, 90 percent of the menu changed.
Fazoli’s new menu items include 11 baked pasta dishes such as Baked Penne with Creamy Chicken Basil.
Fazoli’s also added sandwiches such as its Italian Beef Gorgonzola submarino.