QSR recently got an exclusive media tour of ShopHouse Southeast Asian Kitchen, the Asian fast-casual, created by Chipotle founder Steve Ells.

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The one-unit concept is located in Washington, D.C's, busy Dupont Circle area, where foot traffic is heavy and appetites are adventurous. 

ShopHouse is inspired by the traditional shophouses found throughout Thailand, Malaysia, and Vietnam. Shophouses are classical two- or three-story buildings where families live upstairs and run restaurants or fresh markets on the ground level.

The ShopHouse pairs the bold and complex flavors of Southeast Asia with fresh, sustainably raised ingredients; grilled and braised meats; a variety of fresh vegetables; aromatic herbs; spicy sauces; and an array of garnishes.

Customers move along a service line and customize their meals according to flavor preference and diet, in a format similar to the one that has become the hallmark of Chipotle’s success.

“Anyone who has traveled throughout Southeast Asia can tell you that food there is served very fast—it’s also full of flavor, nutritious, and affordable,” says founder Steve Ells. “This cuisine gives us a great opportunity to prove the idea that the Chipotle model can work with other cuisines.”

To see photos of the concept, click here.

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