Oh, it was a great idea, but the owner was limited in what he could accomplish. That’s where McDonald’s stepped up to the plate and made the chain — and lots of money.
Where they didn’t do well was in buying Donato’s chain of pizza places. They paid something like 25 or 30 million for it, kept it for several years and expanded it, and finally sold it back to the original owner for about three million.
If Wikipedia is correct, McDonald’s basically made Chipotle. They took over interest when it was a small local chain of 14, had 92% ownership at one time and drove it up to 480 restaurants before divesting it. That had to be McDonald’s expertise and money infusion for that to happen, not the original owner/creator in my opinion.
Thank you Michael for pointing that out, I did not know that. Just read about it on Wikipedia – McDonald’s made some money on that deal!
Exactly nine days after I wrote that Chipotle is owned by McDonald’s, on October 13, 2006, McDonald’s divested itself of Chipotle Grill. Prior to Oct. 13, 2006, McDonald’s was the majority owner of the Chipotle chain.
So true, Brisketboy. Should have been clearer that they only buy from people who humanely raise them, in that they give them room to move around and not in small cages so they can’t, no antibiotics and fed vegetarian diets. I’m not saying the place is good or bad, I was just clearing up the misconception it is owned by McDonalds, and the guy who owns them seems like a stand up guy.
Their ribs are Outstanding!! Ive’ heard more than one person say they are the best they have EVER had!!
For me they were pretty close! No disrespect to some of the K.C. and Texas and Carolina Joints!!
And by the way, how do you humanely kill something and then eat it?
Pardon my intrusion but I have lived in San Diego, I now live in Texas and Chipotle my be fine but when all is said, it’s a chain, just like Chili’s, just like Chuy’s and at the bottom of the pile Taco Turdo. I only deal with Mexican restaurants and all that implys. Like Jalisco in Imperial Beach Don Diego in Chula Vista you know the genre. Chains are just that. Can’t put lipstick on a pig.
Just wanted to correct earlier posts: this place has nothing to do with McDonald’s. It is not a franchise or an offshootof McDonald’s. It was started and owned by one guy who has turned it into the hottest stock option for fast food at the moment. At least he is in favor of animals treated humanely and buys from places that do, unlike most places that don’t care.
BTW, It’s Chipotle.
you’re right, TJ. I know for a fact that Houston’s uses mostly local suppliers.
Another generalization, and also incorrect as stated – as an absolute truth.
Houston’s is a mid to upper level restaurant chain, NOT franchised. All products are fresh and top-quality. My brother was a chef with them for 12 years, the kitchen is spotless and quality control is excellent. The food from the baby back ribs to the burgers to the fresh fish are very above average and consistant. Same with the service.
Spinach Artichoke Dip is supposed to be a Houston’s creation, and for my money it is still the best I’ve had. Give it a try sometime. I suppose they have a website showing locations, etc.
No. Is it good? I know that is a generalization, but it’s true because if you go national, you have to change from local vendors to a food supply company for consistency throughout the chain, and fresh homemade recipes go to frozen foods and cans.
Ever been to Houston’s?
Morton’s Steak House is a national chain.
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