MOD Pizza’s first Tampa Bay-area location, located at 2227 Sun Vista Dr. on the south side of S.R. 56 west of the Starbucks, is set to open on Tuesday, Oct. 9, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 11 a.m. and free pizza for the first 52 customers.

While the first 52 get a free artisan-style pizza, 100 percent of all pizza sales after that will be donated to The Mike Evans Family Foundation, a non-profit 5-1(c)(3) started by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver, who is expected to be in attendance.

“MOD has established itself as a leader in the fast-casual pizza category while offering customers an authentic, affordable and fast dining experience,” said Jarett Levan, president of BBX Capital, the exclusive MOD Pizza franchisee in Florida, in a statement. “We are thrilled to spearhead the rapid expansion of the brand throughout the state with our first Tampa location.”

MOD pizzas, which we featured in this July story, are hand-cooked in 800-degree ovens in just minutes, and feature fresh-pressed dough and signature sauces, as well as any combination of more than 30 featured non-GMO toppings.

“We were and are the first super fast-casual chain in the United States,” Brick Kerge, VP of Operations for Food for Thought Restaurant Group, which owns the local MOD franchise, told us. “This is not just another pizza place.”

BBX Capital has signed an agreement to develop as many as 60 Florida outposts for MOD over the next five to seven years. Founded in Seattle in 2008, MOD is the country’s No. 1 fastest-growing chain, according to Nation’s Restaurant News’ list of the Top 10 Fastest-Growing Chains.

While MOD is the fastest-growing chain, it will soon have competition across the street from Blaze Pizza, the second-fastest-growing chain and currently under construction on the north side of S.R. 56.


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