Short Pump restaurant expands near DC

From left: Tazza Kitchen founders John Davenport, Jeff Grant and John Haggai. Photos courtesy of Tazza Kitchen.

From left: Tazza Kitchen founders John Davenport, Jeff Grant and John Haggai. Photos courtesy of Tazza Kitchen.

A group of Short Pump restaurateurs are expanding to Northern Virginia.

The owners of Tazza Kitchen will open a new location in Arlington next month. It will be the Mediterranean and Mexican restaurant’s fourth location since John Davenport, Jeff Grant and John Haggai launched the brand with a storefront in Short Pump Crossing in 2013.

Tazza has leased 3,500 square feet at 2931 S. Glebe Road in Arlington, just outside of Washington, D.C.

Davenport said the new location is one of many in the works for the mid-Atlantic region.

“In this business you have to put out a lot of lures and just see where you get a bite,” Davenport said. “We have been looking in Charlottesville and a second location in Richmond.”

Davenport said a Southside location and another North Carolina location are planned for 2015.

The Arlington restaurant will be Tazza's fourth location.

The Arlington restaurant will be Tazza’s fourth location.

Tazza’s Short Pump restaurant at 3332 Pump Road was previously a Café Cattura, a brand founded in part by Grant. The new Arlington store was also previously a Café Caturra.

Tazza’s other two current locations are in Raleigh, N.C., and Columbia, S.C.

The company’s expansion is being financed by a group of investors and fueled by a regional supply chain for its ingredients that’s been a few years in the making, Davenport said.

“We have spent so much time and effort developing the foundation of our sourcing platform,” Davenport said. “We’re eager to roll it out.”

Davenport said proximity to its suppliers in Virginia and North Carolina will influence where new locations open. Tazza Kitchen food suppliers include Richmond-based Victory Farms, Rock Barn in Arrington, Va., and Caromont Farm in Esmont, Va.

“We have an everyday price point, but we source ingredients that are very high-end,” Davenport said.

Tazza’s main courses range from $9.50 to $17.50.

Davenport said things take a little longer up north, but the payoff is worth it.

“It’s certainly more difficult to get your permitting and to open,” he said. “It’s certainly a more expensive market to operate in, in almost every way, but it also has more potential as a market with higher incomes and high population density.”

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