Prezzo, the TPG Capital backed restaurant chain, has passed the 300-site mark after a flurry of new openings this year, MCA has learnt.

Jon Hendry-Pickup, who was appointed as chief executive last August, told MCA that there were still significant opportunities for the core Prezzo brand as well ambitions to grow the 37-strong Chimichanga and fledgling MexiCo brands.

The group has introduced a new menu for Prezzo this week, with its first sharing pasta range, as well as a piadina menu, which Hendry-Pickup said had proved particularly successful in shopping centres.

After making some changes to the Chmichanga model in the existing Peterborough store, the first new-look Chimichanga will open in Bracknell in September.

Meanwhile, Hendry-Pickup told MCA that future openings for MexiCo were likely to focus on urban locations rather than shopping centres.

The next openings for Prezzo will be in Livingston, West Lothian, later this month and Thornbury, Gloucestershire, in July. It follows a flurry of recent openings, including Mere Green and Telford in the West Midlands, the West Quay development in Bournemouth and Belfast.

Hendry-Pickup said: “It’s great to have got to that 300 milestone. We know where we need to be and there are plenty of opportunities left for us. We have three brands at different stages of their development – with MexiCo coming through and Chimichanga evolving into something really exciting and of course a really strong core brand in Prezzo.”

Hendry-Pickup said the focus in recent months had been aligning the design and operational models of the restaurants to ensure that they were fit for purpose for all dayparts.

The new menu for Prezzo includes a La Famiglia option – a sharing plate of pasta for four people.

Hendry-Pickup said: “It’s all come from feedback from customers. We wanted to harness that idea of sharing a meal in a traditional Italian family home.

“The new menu has a very different look. I think we have been guilty of taking ourselves quite seriously before. I want us to be lighter.”

On future growth, Hendry-pIckup said: “We’re open to all sorts of locations. We’re looking at where are we not based yet and how do we put our best foot forward for those locations. Then it’s about flexing the offer to each location.”