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Chipotle Mexican Grill tests Pollo Asado, a new, bolder flavor of chicken

A total of 95 restaurants will participate in the pilot in Cincinnati and Sacramento markets

Pollo Asado has arrived at Chipotle Mexican Grill test stores in Cincinnati, Ohio and Sacramento, Calif. The Mexican-style fast casual notes that the 95-unit pilot is the first time it has modified its chicken recipe in the brand’s 28-year history.

“Chicken has long been the top protein choice among Chipotle guests,” said Chris Brandt, Chipotle chief marketing officer. “With the celebrated Adobo chicken recipe already on our menu, we decided it was time to add another option and our new flavorful Pollo Asado chicken is another perfect complement to our real ingredients.”

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To produce the Pollo Asado, Chipotle restaurants season the chicken innovation with a dry rub of cumin, guajillo peppers, and coriander, then cook it on the grill to sear in the flavors. The team hand-cuts the chicken and finishes it with garlic, chili peppers, fresh squeezed lime, and chopped cilantro.

At test stores, the Newport Beach, Calif.-based restaurant chain will celebrate the Pollo Asado pilot with a $0 delivery fee on all Pollo Asado orders via the Chipotle app and Chipotle.com made from November 8 through November 14, 2021.

Pollo Asado will be on the menu in Cincinnati and Sacramento for a limited time. Chipotle uses its stage gate process to validate the viability of menu items at select stores before they are introduced across the chain. The fast casual has also indicated its menu introduction process is data-driven to increase the chances of success.

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The test comes on the heels of Smoked Brisket, another stage gate menu item that rolled out in September.

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