Potbelly Sandwich Shop announced it will bring a second location to Knoxville, Tennessee. Currently slated to open early December, the shop will be located in downtown Knoxville at 522 South Gay Street across from Krutch Park. The widely acclaimed neighborhood hangout will feature its toasty warm sandwiches, hand-dipped milkshakes and live, local music.

Potbelly shops have earned a reputation in communities coast-to-coast for having delicious food, fun décor and fresh tunes. Mark Ray, managing owner of the new sandwich shop who is also involved with the existing shop at the Turkey Creek Shopping Complex, is a Knoxville resident with close community connections and an extensive background in fast casual dining.

“After seeing continued success with our first location at Turkey Creek, we know the concept will fit perfectly within the downtown area,” Ray says. “We love Potbelly’s vibes and delicious sandwiches, and we can’t wait to bring even more of them to Knoxville residents. Our main focus is to ensure we align closely with the community, so we will be hiring local musicians to play at the shop and we’ll decorate the restaurant with Knoxville-themed items from local artists.”

Ray will run the business with an assistant manager where they will manage the restaurant’s operations, hire and train new staff, and work to adapt the unique Potbelly culture into the downtown Knoxville community.

The newest Knoxville Potbelly Sandwich Shop will hire between 20 and 25 staff members, including customer service staff and managers. The restaurant’s operation and delivery hours will be announced at a later date.

“At Potbelly, we carefully select our franchisees and operators. It’s important our brand is represented by people with a commitment to their community and entrepreneurial success,” says Rick Fossali, senior director of domestic franchising for Potbelly Sandwich Shop. “With Mark’s experience at the shop at Turkey Creek and his extensive background in the restaurant industry, we are confident he’ll bring our new Knoxville shop to amazing heights. And, as every new sandwich shop is designed to resemble its respective community, we know Mark will build this shop to fit right into the downtown Knoxville scene.”

Potbelly Sandwich Shop first opened in Chicago in 1977, and now includes more than 350 shops across the United States. There are also 30-plus franchise shops in the United States and abroad.

Fast Casual, Growth, News, Potbelly