Mountain Mike’s Pizza announced that two new restaurants featuring the brand’s updated prototype and refreshed guest experience will open this spring in Costa Mesa and Fountain Valley, California. The decision to plant deeper roots in Orange County was spearheaded by the dynamic leadership duo, Chris Britt and Ed St. Geme, Co-CEOs and principal owners of Mountain Mike’s Pizza, who acquired the over 40-year-old brand in 2017. The opening of these new Orange County locations will bring the brand to nearly 220 units and mark the county’s second and third locations, with one currently operating in Lake Forest.
The much-anticipated Costa Mesa location is set to open first this spring, taking over the space formerly occupied by Paris Baguette on 17th St., a prominent Orange County “foodie” hub bordering Newport Beach, and a prime trade area location that Britt and St. Geme have been targeting since acquiring the brand. Additionally, Mountain Mike’s new Fountain Valley restaurant is set to open shortly thereafter and will serve as an innovation kitchen for R&D, along with a test and training center to continually share best practices with franchisees systemwide. Along with a refreshed design, guest-facing features include a private party room, a kids’ activity room with arcade games, a bar counter with seating, beer on tap and a selection of wine, a salad and pizza buffet, and big screen TVs throughout. The nearly 3,000 sq. ft. restaurant will be located in Fountain Valley Square in the same center as Grocery Outlet.
Upon the acquisition, Orange County locals Britt and St. Geme moved the Northern California operations to Newport Beach and began building out the senior leadership team. After experiencing significant growth, in terms of franchisees and system sales, restaurant openings and its expanded executive team, in late 2019 Britt and St. Geme commissioned the development of a new national franchise support center in Newport Beach. The beautiful new support center serves as the company’s operational headquarters and the training ground for the executive and franchise support team and new franchisees.
“Mountain Mike’s Pizza is an iconic name in Northern California and although we will continue to grow the brand throughout that region, we are also excited about the potential in Southern California, including our own back yard of Orange County,” says Britt and St. Geme. “In a short time, we have made great strides in reinvigorating this beloved legacy brand, including significant expansion efforts in the Inland Empire, and now our two new restaurants in Orange County will complement and reinforce how far the Mountain Mike’s brand has come.”
Mountain Mike’s new prototype which will be showcased at both the Fountain Valley and Costa Mesa locations features the welcoming, family-friendly atmosphere that the brand is known for, but with an adventurous twist. Inspired by the great outdoors, the new store design radiates a modern, active feel that speaks to today’s adventurous spirit! Mountain Mike’s is the ideal dining destination for family outings, sports teams, group fundraising events and private parties alike, serving up mouth-watering pizzas, including the fan favorite pepperoni pizza covered from edge to edge with mini crispy, curly pepperonis. All signature pizzas are made with high-quality ingredients like real whole milk mozzarella cheese and dough that’s fresh-made in-house daily. While the brand continues to innovate the dine-in experience, guests can count on Mountain Mike’s to deliver on freshness, quality and value when it comes to carry-out and delivery as well.
Britt and St. Geme continues, “We’re thrilled to unveil our beautiful new restaurants in Costa Mesa and Fountain Valley this spring and bring the Mountain Mike’s experience to more communities throughout Orange County where there’s a real hunger for family-friendly dining concepts like ours. Plus, our new franchise support center is allowing us to serve our franchisees better, doing everything in our power to grow their profits and set them up for success.
With over 25 new units projected to open both in and out of California in 2020, Mountain Mike’s is primed to continue expansion throughout the Western Region.