El Pollo Loco Opens 400th Restaurant in Chelsea, its First Boston Area Location Experienced Multi-Unit Restaurateurs Open Third of at Least 25 New Eng

El Pollo Loco Opens 400th Restaurant in Chelsea, its First Boston Area Location Experienced Multi-Unit Restaurateurs Open Third of at Least 25 New Eng

May 27, 2008 // Franchising.com // BOSTON, MA – Why did the chicken cross the country? To open its 400th restaurant… in the Boston area! El Pollo Loco, the West Coast chicken giant famous for its signature citrus-marinated, flame-grilled chicken, is spreading its wings "Loco-lly" in Chelsea as part of the Company's expansion across the nation.

Local restaurateurs Mitchell Roberts, David Peterman and Rich DiBella of NEEPL, LLC will open the doors to El Pollo Loco's 400th location, and the first in the Boston area, on Monday, May 26th at 10:00 a.m. in Chelsea. The restaurant is located at 1014 Revere Beach Parkway, near Route 16 and Webster.

A special ribbon cutting and lunch will be held at the restaurant on Thursday, May 29, 2008 at 11:30 a.m. with local dignitaries and members of the Chelsea Chamber of Commerce. During the event, El Pollo Loco will announce activities to support the Boys & Girls Clubs of Boston's Gerald and Darlene Jordan Club in Chelsea as part of El Pollo Loco's ardent commitment to the communities it serves. Additionally, in celebration of El Pollo Loco's 400th opening, the 400th guest to visit the Chelsea restaurant on Saturday, June 14th will win two tickets to a Boston baseball game.

Chelsea's new El Pollo Loco restaurant is approximately 3,200 square feet and offers bright, comfortable seating for 80 guests. The restaurant employs 50 new hires from the local community and is open seven days a week, from 10:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. Sunday through Thursday (drive-thru open until 11:00 p.m.) and from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. on Friday and Saturday (drive-thru open until midnight). Dine-in, take-out and drive-thru service are provided, as is catering for special events and celebrations.

"We are thrilled to continue El Pollo Loco's expansion in New England and celebrate the 400th location with our beautiful new restaurant here in Chelsea," said Mitchell Roberts, co-owner and operator of NEEPL, LLC, who along with partner David Peterman and Operating Partner Rich DiBella, are bringing the brand to New England. "New Englanders who have experienced El Pollo Loco while traveling west are excited to enjoy the mouthwatering taste of our citrus-marinated, flame-grilled chicken here locally. And for those who have never tried El Pollo Loco, it will be love at first bite."

The Chelsea location marks the third of at least 25 El Pollo Loco restaurants that NEEPL, LLC plans to open in New England. The first opened in November 2006 at Foxwoods Resort & Casino, followed one year later by a second opening in Tewksbury, MA. Two more locations, one in Warwick, RI and a second in Worcester, MA are set to open in the spring of 2009. Partners Roberts and Peterman also operate 27 Panera Bread locations in three New England states.

"No one else does what El Pollo Loco does with its fresh, natural citrus-marinated chicken grilled over an open flame. Simply put, El Pollo Loco has the best tasting food in the entire chicken category; nothing comes close in terms of flavor or food quality," said Roberts. "El Pollo Loco truly has the whole package – a healthful dining option with the freshest ingredients and exceptional customer service. We're excited to bring the concept to Chelsea and the broader New England area. Based on our research, the region is primed and ready for El Pollo Loco."

Founded in Guasave, Mexico in 1975, El Pollo Loco, pronounced "L Po-yo Lo-co" and Spanish for "The Crazy Chicken," opened its first U.S. restaurant in 1980 and is famous for the unique preparation of its award-winning "pollo"-- fresh chicken marinated in a special recipe of herbs, spices and citrus juices passed down from the founding family. The marinated chicken is then flame-grilled, hand cut and served hot off the grill with warm tortillas, freshly prepared salsas, and a wide assortment of side dishes. Rounding out the menu are fresh flavorful entrées inspired by the kitchens of Mexico, including signature, grilled burritos, Pollo Bowl® entrees, Pollo Salads, tacos, quesadillas, nachos, Chicken Tortilla Soup, and more.

About El Pollo Loco

El Pollo Loco currently operates 400 restaurants (237 franchised locations and 163 company-owned restaurants) located in California, Arizona, Nevada, Texas, Washington, Colorado, Illinois, Georgia, Connecticut and Massachusetts. Headquartered in Costa Mesa, California, El Pollo Loco, Inc. is a privately held company owned by Trimaran Pollo Partners, LLC and management. The principal investors in Trimaran Pollo Partners are funds affiliated with Trimaran Capital, LLC and Freeman Spogli & Co. For more information about El Pollo Loco, visit the company's website at www.elpolloloco.com.

This news release contains forward-looking statements, which are statements that do not relate solely to historical fact. They include, but are not limited to, any statement that may predict, forecast, indicate or imply future results, performance, achievements or events. They may contain words such as "believe," "anticipate," "expect," "estimate," "intend," "project," "plan," "will," "should," "may," "could" or words or phrases of similar meaning. The statements reflect management's current expectations regarding future events. Risk factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, concerns about food-borne illnesses; negative publicity, whether or not valid; adverse public perception due to the occurrence of avian flu; increases in the cost of chicken; an ultimate adverse ruling in litigation involving El Pollo Loco-Mexico which could result in the imposition of significant monetary damages and loss of rights to the trademarks in Mexico; our dependence upon frequent deliveries of food and other supplies; our sensitivity to events and conditions in the greater Los Angeles area; our reliance in part on our franchisees; our vulnerability to changes in consumer preferences and economic conditions; our ability to compete successfully with other quick service and fast casual restaurants; and other risk factors listed from time to time in the Company's reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Statements about the Company's past performance are not necessarily indicative of its future results. The Company undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as the result of new information, future events or otherwise.

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