Chipotle Mexican Grill tests pollo asado in two markets – CNBC

Chipotle Mexican Grill’s new pollo asado

Source: Chipotle Mexican Grill

Chipotle Mexican Grill announced Tuesday it is testing pollo asado at 95 restaurants in Cincinnati and Sacramento, marking the first time it has introduced a new chicken option.

The pollo asado is made with grilled chicken, garlic, fresh lime, guajillo peppers and hand-chopped cilantro. It will be available in the two participating markets for a limited time. 

Under CEO Brian Niccol, who previously led Yum Brands’ Taco Bell, the company has accelerated adding new menu items through a process it calls “stage-gate testing.” The chain has been strategic with new releases, making many of them limited-time options to drive customer traffic to its restaurants and to keep the menu from becoming bloated. This year, it has released cauliflower rice and brisket as limited-time options and quesadillas as a digital-only item.

“Chicken has long been the top protein choice among Chipotle guests,” chief marketing officer Chris Brandt said in a statement. “With the celebrated Adobo chicken recipe already on our menu, we decided it was time to add another option and our new flavorful Pollo Asado chicken is another perfect complement to our real ingredients.” 

Shares of Chipotle have climbed 30% this year, raising its market value to $50.6 billion.

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