Maybe you saw the pictures of President Obama hosting a roundtable dubbed the “sandwich summit” at Taylor Gourmet back in 2012? Or heard about him bringing the Philly-style subs back to the White House for congressional leaders? Or heading back multiple times since, sometimes with Vice President Biden in tow.

Four years before POTUS first discovered the sandwich shop, Casey Patten and his partner set out to bring the taste of Philadelphia to the D.C. market, particularly in less popular areas of the city. When Patten opened the first Taylor Gourmet hoagie shop in 2008, he went into an area of Washington, D.C. that he says was not only underserved food-wise, but was transitioning. “We found that the neighbors and folks that lived close by were really happy someone took a chance on them and the neighborhood,” he says.

“We never anticipated changing the landscape of a neighborhood per se … but once it happened, we knew that was going to be part of our plan to expand,” he says. “Be one of the first to get in, treat your neighbors well, and good things will happen.” That’s certainly been the case going forward for the growing fast casual. It’s reached nine locations in D.C., Maryland and Virginia, as well as one outpost at Reagan National Airport. It’s also got a few more planned for its current market, “and then who knows,” Patten says. Right now, that quick expansion looks pretty optimistic, especially thanks to the $5.6 million it raised in capital funding to fuel growth from private-equity firm KarpReilly in July.