There may soon be an addition to the many culinary offerings among Pictou County’s restaurants.
Frank and Gino’s, a favourite spot to eat in Truro, may be coming to the area in 2018 to open its second franchise in Nova Scotia.
“We’ve had a really successful restaurant here for quite some time, but just in the last couple of years we’ve focused on putting all the pieces together,” said Don Moore, executive president of Grinner’s Food Systems, a company that also owns Greco Pizza and Frozu franchises.
Guy Gallant, vice president of franchising and development with Grinner’s, said that one of the biggest draws of looking to expand into the Pictou County area is the similar market size between New Glasgow and Truro, home of the original franchise.
“There are quite possibly people from Pictou County coming over (to Truro) and liking it, and we were looking for similar-sized communities in the Maritimes,” said Gallant. “Part of our decision was proximity, and the market size itself – we think we could fit into that market quite nicely.”
Gallant estimated that the new business, when it comes to the Pictou County area, will potentially create employment for up to 40 people – the average number of staff at a Frank and Gino’s franchise.
Gallant was undaunted by the prospect of coming into a market where there are other Italian food restaurants – such as Acropole and Pictou County Pizza – because, “Frank and Gino’s does more on the pasta-side. We’re more of a sit-down, and full service restaurant.”
Gallant noted that the company’s Greco brand competes more directly with other pizza places, whereas Frank and Gino’s represents more competition for the East Side Mario’s and Jungle Jim’s franchises of the world.
Frank and Gino’s was created in 1999 in Truro, and found a specific niche with a wide variety in its menu, with “everyone from steaks to spaghetti,” reads a media release from Grinner’s Food Systems.
The company is now searching for an experienced operator to be part of the chain. A media release from Grinner’s said all the necessary pieces to franchising a chain like Frank and Gino’s are already in place, including operations manuals, recipes and other documentation.
Specifically, Grinner’s is looking to expand Frank and Gino’s into communities with populations between 20,000 and 60,000. Other possible locations include Yarmouth, Sussex, N.B., and Summerside, P.E.I.
The company is looking for operators who want to start, building from the ground up, but are also open to working with an operator with an existing restaurant to be converted.
“I think what makes Frank & Gino’s stand out is its menu designed around Maritime tastes, and it caters to a broad array of age groups while delivering an interesting décor and relaxing atmosphere,” said Moore.