Jacksonville will be the first Florida-site of Charlotte-based franchise Brixx Wood Fired Pizza — with its first location on the first floor of 220 Riverside.
The restaurant will occupy a 3,714 square-foot space with a 1,400-square-foot outdoor patio. The menu will include wood-fired pizza, salad and pasta as well as vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options, according to a statement.
Brixx is performing a build-out and is expected to open in summer 2016.
The concept also features a high-quality menu paired with wine and craft beer, with a full-service bar in an upscale atmosphere.
“This speaks to the foodie scene Jacksonville is creating,” said Carrie Smith, regional managing partner for Franklin Street, who helped Brixx research the area. “We’re one of the core markets for chef-driven concepts. Jacksonville sees growth year-over-year.”
Juna Partners LLC is the franchisee and Lora Ramsey is the principal representing the new Brixx location.
“We knew how successful Brixx could be in an urban market,” said Ramsey, who lived in Charlotte, but is from Winter Haven, Florida. “I knew Florida is where we wanted to go to, and Jacksonville is so similar to Charlotte. It has the beach, football, everything Charlotte has to offer but warmer.”
As for where in Jacksonville to open the location, Ramsey said as soon as she saw the Brooklyn Riverside area, she knew.
“We were very picking in making sure the first location in Jacksonville set off the right tone for what Brixx is,” she said. “We wanted to make sure it was something urban and trendy.”
Franklin Street‘s Smith and Katy Figg, associate of retail leasing, brought the deal together. Brixx hired the Franklin Street team to help the brand better understand the Northeast Florida market and to scout the best location.
“We did an entire site tour from North Jacksonville to St. Augustine,” Smith said. “They were really excited about Brooklyn. It’s mimics a lot of areas Brixx is already in, that mixed-use urban feel the concept seeks out.”
The concept has 31 restaurants throughout the Southeast, and signed a 10-year lease at 220 Riverside. Smith said that if everything goes well, the brand plans to open five restaurants in Northeast Florida, with the Beaches area and Southside as strong contenders.
“It has a really good cult following in the Carolinas,” Smith said. “And if you talk to anyone at Brixx, its wood fire grill is a unique aspect. It’s not your particular mom-and-pop place, it’s a specialized type of pizza.”