Will D.C. get an ITSU or Caffe Nero?

As Americans care more about where their food is sourced from and turn less to the dinosaur chains of the 80’s and 90’s for grub, be on the lookout for two global players intent on benefiting from our love of fast-casual food. U.K.-based ITSU plans to re-enter the market (New-York) next year with its high-quality sushi offerings. ITSU was founded by Julian Metcalfe who also served as the co-founder of Pret A Manger. He’ll be well aware of the initial struggles Pret faced when first dishing out pre-packed sandwiches to us Yanks. 

This blog reached out to their press office as to whether D.C. was a target city, but the response was vague and – to be honest – unhelpful. Caffe Nero, a U.K.-based coffee chain, has already opened up shop in Boston with plans to open up more locations in that metro area. Caffe Nero seems to be positioning itself as an upscale Italian coffee shop to differentiate itself from the ubiquitous Starbucks. 

We’re confident that – at some point – both ITSU and Caffe Nero will open up in D.C. We have the right demographics, economy, and awareness for these new kids on the block to invade our city. Stay tuned…


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