Farm Fresh: Mendocino Farms named industry veteran Kevin Miles as its new CEO.

Farm Fresh: Mendocino Farms named industry veteran Kevin Miles as its new CEO. Photo by Mendocino Farms

Mendocino Farms named Kevin Miles chief executive as the fast-casual chain begins to expand beyond California.

Industry veteran Miles most recently helmed Texas-based Zoës Kitchen, which expanded to 268 locations during his nine-year tenure. Miles took the chain public in 2014. The Mediterranean fast-casual diner sold last year to Cava Group Inc. for $300 million.

Miles will replace Harald Herrmann, who left Mendocino Farms earlier this year to take a job at Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County Inc. Herrmann was brought into Mendocino Farms by TPG Capital, which acquired a majority stake in the sandwich chain in 2017, to replace co-founder Mario Del Pero.

“Kevin is an exceptional operator with a proven ability to build and scale dynamic restaurant concepts,” said Chris Kelly of TPG Growth, in a statement. Miles’ appointment “marks a key milestone in Mendocino Farms’ journey,” Kelly added.

Created by Del Pero and his wife Ellen Chen, the first store opened in Bunker Hill in 2005. Since being acquired by TPG, the chain has added 10 restaurants.

Mendocino Farms operates 27 restaurants in California and recently opened the first of several planned for Houston.

The announcement suggests Mendocino Farms is gearing up for even more growth, but the company declined to comment further.

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