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LOS ANGELES-The Atlanta-based Raving Brands restaurant chain is scouting for sites for its Moe’s Southwest Grill and Mama Fu’s Noodle House restaurants here and throughout much of Southern California. The restaurant chain has enlisted real estate broker Epsteen & Associates to locate sites for the firm, according to Darin Kraetsch, VP of real estate for Raving Brands. The chain plans to open 10 Moe’s Southwest Grills and four Mama Fu’s Noodle Houses throughout the state. Raving Brands, which operates 127 restaurants nationwide with plans to exceed 300 by year end, says it has signed deals that call for three Moe’s Southwest Grill locations in San Diego, three in Palm Springs, one in Los Angeles and three in the Santa Barbara/San Luis Obispo area. Mama Fu’s Noodle House will open four locations in Los Angeles and Orange counties. Moe’s and Mama Fu’s franchisees typically lease their spaces. They are focused on mixed-use, lifestyle centers, open air malls and revitalized downtown areas. Moe’s Southwest Grill’s menu includes burritos, tacos and salads that offer smaller portions and light menu options. The atmosphere features classic tunes from artists of past, among them the Grateful Dead and Jimi Hendrix. Mama Fu’ s Noodle House’s offers Vietnamese, Korean, Thai, Chinese and Japanese cuisine in what Raving Brands describes as a “high-energy atmosphere.” California represents a crucial market for the restaurant chain, says Martin Sprock, founder of Raving Brands, which operates as a franchise. Besides Moe’s Southwest Grill and Mama Fu’s Noodle House, its brands include Planet Smoothie, PJ’s Coffee and Doc Green’s Gourmet Salads. The company was founded in 2000 and operates in 14 states with 700 franchises signed in 38 states.

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