SAN FRANCISCO, March 29, 2018 – Mendocino Farms, the popular sandwich market that has recently expanded north from Southern California, has chosen the landmark Merchants Exchange for its San Francisco flagship location. The eatery will occupy the premium California Street storefront vacated by La Boulange following the bakery’s purchase by Starbucks.
Co-founded by husband-and-wife team Mario Del Pero and Ellen Chen in 2005, the thriving restaurant group has since attracted the attention of thousands of hungry sandwich aficionados, as well as a minority stake investment from Whole Foods Market.
Mendocino Farms offers a gourmet fast-casual dining option with affordable prices, and the chef-driven menu emphasizes premium, locally-sourced ingredients. Each stylish restaurant location is thoughtfully custom-designed to serve its community, providing welcoming neighborhood gathering places with fine dining-level hospitality. After cementing its reputation as one of the most popular destinations and catering companies in downtown Los Angeles, “Mendo” (as loyal fans call it) promises to become a favorite for foodies in the heart of the busy and densely-populated Financial District.
“Ellen and I are NorCal natives and this city inspired our restaurant concept, so being able to share what we’ve built with this community is incredibly special for us,” said Co-Founder Mario Del Pero. “Opening in such an iconic location at the Merchants Exchange building, which is only a few blocks from my great grandfather’s butcher shop on Pearl Street that he operated at the turn of the century, feels like a homecoming.”
“We got much of our early food inspiration from some great local places like Tartine in the city, Bake Sale Betty at the Temescal and the original Oakville Grocery as you enter Napa Valley,” Co-Founder Ellen Chen reminisces. “When we created Mendocino Farms, our goal was to serve high quality, made-from-scratch ingredients in an unpretentious, loving environment—a very ‘Bay Area’ ethos. These values have really resonated with the Southern California market, but we are finally bringing our restaurant home!”
“We’re thrilled to have Mendocino Farms join our family at the Merchants Exchange,” said Clint Reilly, the building’s longtime owner. “After meeting extensively with Mario to negotiate this deal, it quickly became obvious that he and Ellen have placed Mendocino Farms at the vanguard of the sandwich and salad market. They are an exceptional fit for the Financial District and a true amenity to the building.”
The location at the Merchants Exchange will be Mendocino Farms’ largest at 5,882 square feet, and will be the first to offer breakfast items in addition to signature fan favorites such as the “Not So Fried” Mary’s Chicken Sandwich, the Kurobuta Pork Belly Banh Mi, and the Peruvian Steak Sandwich. Though the popular eatery is renowned for its innovative, chef-driven sandwich creations, its flavorful and unique entrée salads have also garnered a substantial following..
Mendocino Farms opened its first NorCal location at The Pruneyard in Campbell in December of 2017, quickly followed by Santana Row in San Jose in February and San Mateo in March this year.
About Mendocino Farms
Mendocino Farms started as—and still is—a family business. Co-founders (and husband-and-wife team) Mario Del Pero and Ellen Chen envisioned the Mendocino Farms concept as an elevated dining experience inspired by wine country food and hospitality. Each new location is designed to be a gathering place where friends, families, and coworkers can come together over a good meal, and hopefully even learn something new about a local farm, purveyor, or special seasonal ingredient.
As the business has grown, so has the family. Mendocino Farms’ talented and devoted team of culinary and hospitality professionals continues driving the mission forward every day, serving the community in many ways and developing partnerships with some of the best farmers and food artisans in the region in order to provide delicious and sustainably-sourced food while actively supporting the local food economy.
About the Merchants Exchange
Designed by legendary architects Willis Polk, Daniel Burnham and Julia Morgan, the Merchants Exchange is one of San Francisco’s most important office and hospitality properties. The 241,708 square-foot building located at the heart of the City’s vibrant Financial District has served as the epicenter of San Francisco’s business, civic and social activity for more than a century. Boasting breathtaking neoclassical design and unparalleled natural light throughout all tenant spaces, the building has been fully modernized—including a state-of-the-art, on-demand elevator system—for today’s tenants.
In addition to exceptional tenant spaces, the building also boasts two of San Francisco’s most celebrated special event venues, the Julia Morgan Ballroom and the Merchants Exchange Club. Combined, the venues host nearly 300 of the City’s most important corporate, social and philanthropic events each year, from U.S. presidential visits to Fortune 500 product launches.
About Clint Reilly Landmark Properties
Clint Reilly Landmark Properties is a privately held, full-service real estate firm based in San Francisco. Owned and operated by Chairman Clint Reilly, the company acquires and manages a carefully curated portfolio of office, hospitality and mixed-use properties. Key San Francisco assets include the Merchants Exchange (465 California St.), the Little Fox Theater (535 Pacific Ave.), Leidesdorff Place (340 Pine St.) and the Credo Building (360 Pine St.).