Tijuana Flats announced that it has moved its test kitchen from its corporate office in Maitland, Florida, to its newest Central Florida restaurant in Ocoee, Florida, in a move to allow guests get closer to its process of menu innovation.

“At Tijuana Flats, our menu has always been highly influenced by guests’ preferences, and we wanted to let our guests literally get closer to the process,” says Tijuana Flats VP of Marketing Curtis Cattanach. “So, we did something bold, and moved our test kitchen from our corporate office to one our newest restaurants in Florida where guests can now be closer than ever to our process of creating and refining the menu they love.”

In addition to relocating its test kitchen, Tijuana Flats’ Research and Development Chef Cheryl Hardway will also work out of the test kitchen, where she can interact with guests daily and incorporate real-time guest feedback as she innovates menu items. The new test kitchen and Ocoee location are overseen by Kalie Godwin, Tijuana Flats’ regional director of operations.

“Strategically placing our test kitchen in a restaurant will allow us to keep a finger on the pulse of what our guests are saying and how they feel about our menu,” adds Hardway. “Guest satisfaction has always been at the heart of Tijuana Flats culture, and this move ultimately helps ensure that we continue to deliver the freshest, boldest Tex-Mex there is.”

The new test kitchen is located at its Ocoee restaurant at 11024 W. Colonial Dr., Ste. 50, Ocoee, FL 34761. The Tijuana Flats Ocoee restaurant opened in March 2021 and was the brand’s first Central Florida location to open since 2019.

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