Save the Date: 1/17/2012 - that's when Einstein plans to open its first Seattle corporate-owned shop in South Lake Union. We spoke to Mike Ellis, an EVP for Einstein Noah Restaurant Group (NASDAQ: BAGL) about the chain's plans to aggressively grow their footprint in the Northwest.
Ellis, formerly a Burger King development executive, acknowledged that the new Seattle location and the chain's recent acquisition of Portland's Kettleman Bagels are part of an ambitious plan to cure the "under representation" of Einstein and Noah's Bagels locations in the Pacific Northwest. We know there's been a great deal of panic in Portland, about whether the Einstein/Noah corporate overlords would meddle with the popular Kettleman bagel recipe. Sample Eater Portland comment on hearing about the acquisition: "Kettleman's has actual boiled bagels and real eggs. Noah's has somewhat bagel-shaped bread and nasty egg-juice that always comes out looking and tasting like a rubber gasket. And the place always smells like burning hair."
So, on our sister city's behalf we asked Ellis their intentions regarding Kettleman's. He told us that, "As far as I know, no plans to change the recipe . . . but that's really an operations question."
[Photo: Huge Ass City]