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About El Pollo Loco

El Pollo Loco

El Pollo Loco is a restaurant chain based in the United States, specializing in Mexican-style grilled chicken. Its signature chicken is marinated in a proprietary blend of lime, fruit juice, garlic, spices and seasoning then grilled on an open flame.Restaurant service consists of: dine-in, take-out, with some locations offering drive through options. The company is headquartered in Costa Mesa, California and operates over 400 (as of March 2014) company-owned and franchised restaurants in the Southwestern United States."El Pollo Loco" is Spanish for "The Crazy Chicken".

Menu

Entrance to El Pollo Loco headquarters in Costa Mesa, California
A typical El Pollo Loco restaurant

El Pollo Loco makes Mexican chicken entrees. Chicken meals are available in individual, family and catering-sized portions.Throughout the years, the chain has expanded into burritos, signature Pollo Bowls, and tostada salads and serves items that compete with Chipotle Mexican Grill, Taco Bell, Del Taco, and other Mexican-style restaurants.The company describes its chicken as "citrus-marinated and fire-grilled.

History

Juan Francisco Ochoa started the restaurant in Guasave, Sinaloa, Mexico, in 1975.By 1979, the chain had expanded throughout northern Mexico. In 1980, its first U.S. restaurant opened in Los Angeles, California, at 503 Alvarado Street, near Sixth Street.

Locations

In the U.S., the El Pollo Loco chain operates nearly 400 company-owned and franchised restaurants in Nevada, Arizona, Utah, Texas, and California. In 2012, El Pollo Loco restaurants went through a major makeover, with more than 55 of their restaurants sporting a newer more contemporary look. The revamped stores include grills that are visible to guests as they order, larger windows that shed more light on the colorful orange and blue hues of the dining room. The salsa bar moved from the dining room to a more central location near the front counter.

Growth

El Pollo Loco saw systemwide sales up nearly 9% in 2012; fueled by limited-time offers, a new marketing campaign and restaurant remodels the company opened new restaurants in Las Vegas, NV, Torrance, CA and Oceanside, CA in the Summer of 2013. El Pollo Loco or its franchisees briefly operated several restaurants in metro Atlanta and Boston,New Jersey and in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia;these closed by 2011.

Charity partners

El Pollo Loco values the act of giving back to the communities that they are in. The brand created Fire-Grilled Fundraisers, an opportunity for nonprofit organizations to raise funds for their cause while dining at the restaurant. They also created El Pollo Loco Charities, a nonprofit 501 charity created and powered by volunteer employees of El Pollo Loco. El Pollo Loco Charities provide over 10,000 meals a year to help underprivileged families.

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