Chipotle Mexican Grill has signed a lease to set up shop in Oakton, eyeing an opening date sometime this spring.
The chain restaurant serves burritos, tacos and salad, and features an open kitchen where customers can see the food being made and pick their own toppings.
Chipotle is committed to a mission of "food with integrity" — 100 percent of its pork, chicken and beef is naturally raised, and 40 percent of its beans are organic, according to its website. It also boasts zero trans fat frying oil.
The Denver-based company currently has nearby locations on Maple Avenue in Vienna, Lee Highway in Fairfax City and in the Fairfax Corner shopping center.
Chipotle will move into the space Fitness Resource vacated in September 2011. It signed a lease in late October.
"We've been looking forward to signing Chipotle for a long time," said Arthur Matarazzo, a leasing agent for A.J. Dwoskin & Associates who has looked for a deal to bring Chipotle to Oakton for the past few years. "We feel it's a good fit for the community. Our center now has a wide range of food, from Italian to Chinese to Kebab to Thai to sushi. Chipotle rounds out our menu selection."
Matarazzo said they expect Chipotle to open its doors in late March.
The restaurant will be located in Hunter Mill Plaza, alongside restaurants such as Luciano Italian Restaurant & Pizzeria, Oakton Chesapeake Cafe and Tigris Middle Eastern Grill. It will also share the shopping center with retail shops such as Tabby Cat Kids Clothes, Oakton Wine Shop and Austin's Big & Tall.
"We are very excited to hear that Chipotle is moving into Hunter Mill Plaza because it will help increase traffic to the shopping center," said Alex Craige, owner of Tabby Cat. "All of the retailers will benefit."
Bryan Gauthier, owner of Oakton Wine Shop, shares Craige's optimism about Chipotle's move into the shopping center.
"It is exciting to see Oakton continue to grow and attract new businesses to this small community," he said. "I am excited at the possibilities and exposure a company like Chipotle brings to Hunter Mill Plaza."
What do you think about Chipotle coming to Oakton? Leave a comment below.