Tony Roma’s Franchise Unveils New Global Prototype Restaurant to Strong Acclaim from Media

Orlando food writer gives positive review to our inspired menu refresh and chic and sophisticated redesign

The revamped Tony Roma’s franchise flagship restaurant on International Drive in Orlando opened to rave reviews from the media. Orlando Weekly food writer Holly V. Kapherr was wowed by our Tony Roma’s 2.0 during a recent visit, giving her stamp of approval to our full menu refresh and restaurant redesign, both of which were unveiled this summer.

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The complete restaurant refresh and updated menu at our flagship restaurant is a draw for locals as well as tourists flocking to the popular International Drive area. The new private dining area is ideal for year-round business meetings and celebrations.

“The new Tony Roma’s was not only chic but sophisticated, with a private dining area perfect for holiday gatherings, family reunions and birthday bashes, a well-stocked bar with mixologists who really know what they’re doing, and a warm and open floor plan that feels as cozy as TR would have wanted it to,” Holly writes in the Orlando Weekly, which has a print circulation of 40,000, as well as a large online following.

Tony Roma’s has always been THE place for RIBS. Our fans have been rolling up their sleeves and enjoying our mouthwatering, craveable ribs for nearly 45 years. Today our iconic brand is stronger than ever, with a new restaurant design and a popular new menu. We’ve stayed loyal to the core DNA that has made us famous worldwide, and we’re attracting the next generation of loyal Tony Roma’s customers as we work toward the goal of 250 new locations over the next decade. We offer a lower initial investment than many upscale casual dining, full-service restaurants.

Writer finds new Tony Roma’s franchise impressive, from the warm and open floor plan to outstanding food

Holly reviewed several new menu offerings, including our small plates and appetizers, as well as our innovative takes on ribs like our Pork-strami pastrami style ribs from the Bones & Bites menu and our lamb ribs entree. She also made note of our finesse when it comes to innovative takes on sauce, which all started with our famous baby-back ribs nearly a half a century ago.

“In culinary school, we were taught that a good sauce covers a lot of sins, and if there’s something that Tony Roma’s knows how to do, it’s make sauce. That being said, there weren’t a lot of sins to cover, so the sauces did exactly what they were supposed to do: enhance,” notes Holly in her Orlando Weekly review.

No Tony Roma’s dining experience is complete without our signature desserts, and Holly was just as impressed with the grand finale of her meal, especially our new seasonal cobbler. tony roma's franchise

“This cobbler is perfection. Not an overstatement. The vanilla ice cream, warm fruit, fluffy and crunchy topping and fresh berry garnish all equal a home run. Order this one for sure,” she notes.

Her overall dining experience, from start to finish, was positive every bite of the way.

“Everything that came out of the kitchen was thoughtful, hot (one of my biggest pet peeves is lukewarm food), well-executed and full of flavor. It’s difficult to make crowd-pleasers like ribs, meatballs and Buffalo wings interesting and fun, but the new Tony Roma’s did it.”

Prime locations available nationwide

The International Drive prototype signals a new emphasis on domestic expansion, with a goal of 250 new locations over the next 10 years. For savvy investors looking for a sound investment, we have significant room for growth in major metropolitan areas, shopping malls and secondary markets.

Not only is the open floor plan featured at our I-Drive prototype restaurant more aesthetically pleasing, modern and elegant, but it is also a better buy. We’ve also changed our preferred building model from freestanding to an in-line, end cap or mall location. These restaurants are more flexible to locate and allow franchisees to get closer to their core customer base. Because these models typically involve a lease, the launch process is simplified — minus building permits, contractors and other building processes. This new model is significantly less expensive and is also faster to build.

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