Fazoli’s to unveil 20 new menu items in Dayton

Dayton-area Fazoli’s restaurants will unveil more than 20 new menu items starting next week as part of a test-marketing campaign.

“We’re upgrading every aspect of the guest experience at Fazoli’s,” a spokeswoman for the Italian restaurant chain said. Fazoli’s CEO Carl Howard — a native of Kettering and a 1983 graduate of Fairmont East High School — is coming to Dayton Feb. 10-11 to help kick off the test-marketing campaign, which Fazoli’s has labeled “Italian for the People.”

Food giveaways and discount coupons will be part of the test-marketing campaign, a spokeswoman said. The expanded menu includes new salad, sandwich and pizza options.

The test-marketing period starts Monday and will extend through June 28. The results will be analyzed, then the new menu items that received a warm response and other changes in service that make the cut will be rolled out nationally, Fazoli’s officials said.

Howard is scheduled to discuss the campaign and serve some new menu items to a group of students at Fairmont High School on Feb. 11, a Fazoli’s spokeswoman said.

Lexington, Ky.-based Fazoli’s owns or franchises more than 200 restaurants nationwide.

In 2010, the chain chose Dayton to test-market an enhanced-service concept in which glassware and silverware replaced plastic and paper, and servers delivered meals to guests’ tables. The concept went over so well during the test-marketing that it has been replicated at Fazoli’s locations nationwide.

In 2013, Howard was named the “Executive of the Year” in the food and beverage category in the 11th annual American Business Awards, and FastCasual.com recognized Fazoli’s as “Brand of the Year.”

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