These seven chains appeared on the Top 500 ranking for the first time this year. Many of them share a focus on health and high-quality menu items, whether it's a sandwich or a cup of coffee.
2019 sales: $66.2M*
The burger chain founded by the Wahlberg brothers is growing via multiple channels. Besides adding stand-alone units, it partnered with the Hy-Vee supermarket chain to eventually open 26 units in seven states and is also expanding its retail beef line.
Punch Bowl Social
2019 sales: $61.1M*
2019 sales: $60M
The health-forward fast casual sets itself apart with elevated menu items made from scratch using locally sourced ingredients.
2019 sales: $57.2M*
Philz forgoes the traditional cafe menu of espressos, lattes and mochas to focus on creating the perfect cup of coffee for each customer. Coffee is brewed one cup at a time, allowing the guest to personalize it to their taste.
Blue Bottle Coffee
2019 sales: $54.7M*
Like Philz, Blue Bottle brews its coffee one cup at a time. Stores have an upscale feel and no Wi-Fi, along with a pared-down menu that puts the focus squarely on the quality of its coffee.
Mendocino Farms (pictured)
2019 sales: $54M*
Takeout has been the key to this fast casual’s rapid growth. To account for all the off-premise business, the LA-based sandwich and salad chain is shrinking its dining areas, expanding its kitchens and adding seating areas for pickup guests.
2019 sales: $50.7M*
Source: Technomic Top 500 Chain Restaurant Report; *Technomic estimate