Korean Fast-Casual Chain Bibibop To Take Over ShopHouse Locations
The new restaurants plan to open by early summer in Bethesda, North Bethesda and Silver Spring
The locations of ShopHouse Asian Kitchen, including three in Montgomery County, will be replaced by another fast-casual Asian-themed restaurant.
Bibibop Asian Grill, which serves a Korean-based menu, has bought the leases for all ShopHouse locations, Nation’s Restaurant News reported Friday. The Ohio-based chain will take over all 15 locations nationwide, including the former ShopHouses in Bethesda, North Bethesda and Silver Spring.
Bibibop plans to have all locations converted by early summer, according to the report.
The deal more than doubles the number of the chain’s locations. Bibibop, which opened in 2013, has 12 restaurants, all in Ohio and largely around Columbus.
Jonathan Quinn, vice president of marketing for Gosh Enterprises, which owns Bibibop, told Nation’s Restaurant News that the deal gave the chain the opportunity to expand nationally. He also described the takeover as “more of a refresh and a rebrand” since the layout for the kitchens and restaurants will be similar to what they were as ShopHouse.
Bibibop takes its name from the Korean dish bibimbap meaning “mixed rice,” according to the company’s website. Diners start with a plate of steamed rice and then add a choice of grilled meat or tofu along with vegetables and Asian sauces.
ShopHouse, Chipotle’s Thai-inspired fast-casual concept that launched in 2011, closed Friday after failing to generate enough sales.
ShopHouse had three Montgomery County locations: 4820 Bethesda Ave. in downtown Bethesda, 11584 Old Georgetown Road at Pike & Rose in North Bethesda and 935 Ellsworth Drive in downtown Silver Spring.
There were also four Washington, D.C., locations and one in Columbia.