Burrito Shak Franchises Make a Big Splash at the Beach

Burrito Shak Founder & His Family David Longo started bussing tables at a young age, igniting his love of restaurants and fine cuisine. He earned a degree in Culinary and Food Service Management from Johnson & Wales University and spent 12 years as an executive fine-dining chef.

In 2015, David and his wife Kara, while raising a family of three girls, noticed a need for fresh, fast-casual food in their local coastal town of Hampstead, North Carolina. They came up with the idea for Burrito Shak and launched their brand with the goal of serving high-quality, tasty food at an affordable price. Every dish is hand-crafted according to David’s own Baja-flavored recipes. The restaurant is infused with beach vibes for a comfy, family-oriented restaurant where everyone feels welcome.

David and Kara decided to put down roots in North Carolina and raise their girls there. Their devout commitment to their local community paid off when David won the 2023 Coastal Entrepreneur of the Year for the Hospitality Industry because of his work building the brand.

David’s wife Kara grew up in Ohio and earned her degree at Ohio State University. After moving to North Carolina, Kara became a teacher and then took over as the marketing and creative director for Burrito Shak.

Burrito Shak quickly became an overnight success, and within just two years, the brand won the Best Taco in the North Carolina contest in 2017. The venue beat out 64 competing restaurants. The vast menu is comprised of fresh, locally sourced ingredients, offering the tastiest Mexican-style food around. They make everything fresh daily, and each order is hand-crafted for quality.

David decided to start franchising in 2019 after getting multiple inquiries from investors and interested parties about additional locations. He established the first franchise location in Swansboro and another in Wilmington – Monkey Junction. The brand added four more locations in Cary, Surf City, Jacksonville, and Lake Havasu, AZ.

The key to launching a successful franchise is strong professional guidance, which is why he chose to work with Spadea Lignana. He became aware of their reputation for being the best in the business.

Burrito Shak has 9 locations, with six more planned this year (one additional corporate restaurant) and 12 in development. The brand’s short-term goals are slow, steady growth toward 21 locations and then nationwide. The brand is currently building its infrastructure to support current and future franchisees. Their goal is to have a presence across the U.S. someday.

Burrito Shak Location

What makes Burrito Shak so special is its unwavering commitment to quality ingredients, 13 signature sauces, signature burritos, unmatched tacos, quesadillas, and accompanying dishes. For example, David uses only 9-11oz proprietary chicken in his dishes for chef-level quality.

The brand is looking for personable go-getters who are community-oriented with the desire to give back as potential franchisees.

David Longo said this about Spadea Lignana, “Burrito Shak has been with Spadea Lignana since the organization of our franchise. Andy and the Spadea Lignana team have been there every step of the way, ensuring the proper legal steps are taken during the process. They always provide great insight into any questions or concerns that come up along the way. We are extremely grateful for our relationship with the firm.”

Says Spadea Lignana founder and partner Tom Spadea; we are delighted to be a part of Burrito Shak’s success and look forward to partnering with them as they expand nationally.

For more information about Burrito Shak franchise opportunities, visit their website.

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