Biz Buzz: Chipotle opens in downtown SLO

Hundreds turn out to get free grub at the new Mexican eatery, which will offer more tonight

March 3, 2010 

The Chipotle Mexican Grill restaurant in downtown San Luis Obispo drew a long line of customers Wednesday, March 3, 2010, as it celebrated its grand opening by offering free burritos.


The new Chipotle restaurant in downtown San Luis Obispo will offer free dinner to patrons coming into the new location from 5 to 8 tonight as a way to celebrate its grand opening, which occurs on Friday.

The free-food promotion actually began Wednesday as college-age students took advantage of a soft opening to get a free burrito. Hundreds of people formed a line from the restaurant down Higuera, along Chorro Street and back up Marsh Street.

The restaurant is located in the Wineman Hotel building at 839 Higuera St. A contest to win free burritos for a year will also be conducted.

Chipotle serves dishes with naturally raised pork and chicken, and dairy products are free of synthetic hormones. An increasing percentage of the beans it uses are organically grown, according to a spokeswoman.

The restaurant will be open daily from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

— Tad Weber

New Round Table coming to SLO

Round Table Pizza is opening a second location in San Luis Obispo. It will replace Pizza Fusion, which closed last October after operating for less than a year in the shopping center with Trader Joe’s and Food 4 Less.

“Given the popularity of the center, we saw strong demand for the space,” said Preston Thomas of Rossetti and Co., the leasing broker for the spot. “A new pizza place will add more vibrancy to the center.”

The restaurant will open sometime this month, said Saeed Keshtgar, who has co-owned the Round Table franchise with his brother Vahid Keshtgar in the county for about 30 years.

This will be the seventh restaurant the brothers have opened on the Central Coast. The Keshtgar family already operates Round Table restaurants in Morro Bay, Los Osos, Arroyo Grande, San Luis Obispo, Santa Maria and Lompoc. They are also opening a store in Atascadero in July and are looking for a location in Paso Robles, he said.

They employ about 150 people and hope to add 15 more in the new San Luis Obispo store and another 35 to 40 workers in Atascadero, Kehstgar said.

“We are trying to move the economy as much as we can,” he said.

— Melanie Cleveland

Caltrans contracts with two local firms

Caltrans announced recently that two local small businesses have been awarded contracts worth $2.3 million to perform repairs to areas damaged by recent storms.

Rockwood General Contractors of Nipomo received a $305,000 emergency contract to replace a culvert on Highway 166, which straddles the San Luis Obispo-Santa Barbara county line.

Windsor Construction of Cambria received $2 million to repair Highway 1 north of Ragged Point.

In the future, small businesses might receive contracts because of Assembly Bill 31, which took effect Jan. 1 and allows state agencies to raise award contracts from $100,000 to $250,000 for small firms or businesses owned by disabled veterans.

Caltrans District 5 Small Business Manager Ann Danko said that Caltrans’ goal is to award all minor contracts under $250,000 to local small businesses.

Small business John Madonna Construction of San Luis Obispo was recently awarded $100,000 to improve landscaping on Highway 101 in the Goleta area.

To be defined as a small business in California, a firm must have its main office located in the state and its primary owner must live in the state.

It must also employ fewer than 100 workers and earn less than $14 million per year on average over three years, according to Danko.

— Julia Hickey

• • •

SLO Dental Practice has moved from 21 Santa Rosa St. in San Luis Obispo to a refurbished location at 1551 Bishop St., Suite 420.

Owner Dr. Disbel Mansilla is expanding the practice to include Dr. Tom S. Specht.

— Julia Hickey

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