Big Mamma’s opened in Athens, Ohio, in 2005, just a short walk from the Ohio University campus. After building a cult following with students and locals alike—even while competing with a Chipotle across the street—it opened a second location in Columbus, Ohio, in 2016.
Crumpton, an Ohio alum, previously owned and served as president and CEO of D.P. Dough, a calzone quick-serve franchise with locations in 19 states. DePizzo came onboard in 2013, first as an investor behind a Columbus D.P. Dough location and later as the brand’s director of growth.
The business partners sold D.P. Dough to Eric Cook, founder of calzone competitor Calios, in May (Calios locations converted to D.P. Dough after the sale). DePizzo and Crumpton wanted to join forces in building up another concept, and approached Big Mamma’s founder Quinn Schaller about purchasing the brand.
They took over Big Mamma’s in February, and have set about improving the two existing locations. That included store remodels, rebranding, and enhancing the ingredient quality.
“Basically, it was taking the concept that folks know and love and really operationalizing it, standardizing it, and using better ingredients,” DePizzo says.
So far, the menu has stayed the same, featuring a dozen signature items that can be served as a burrito, salad, nachos, or over rice. Guests can also build their own dish, and can order chips on the side with guacamole, salsa, or cheese.
The sale of Big Mamma’s also came with a beer shop adjacent to the original restaurant. Brew Craft & Carryout offers “beer, smokes, snacks, drinks, and essentials,” and is open daily until 2 or 3 a.m., just like the restaurants.