Food & Wine

The last Qdoba in the Tri-Cities is closing

A trio of tacos from Qdoba Mexican Eats.
A trio of tacos from Qdoba Mexican Eats.

Tri-Citians will have to travel to Spokane for a Qdoba fix after the company closes its last Mid-Columbia restaurant.

The Richland Qdoba will close by 4 p.m. Friday, earlier if food runs out, employees confirmed Wednesday.

The fast-casual Mexican franchise opened nearly four years ago at 2673 Queensgate Drive. It is operated by San Diego-based QDOBA Mexican Eats, the second-largest Mexican fast-casual chain after Chipotle.

Officials were not immediately available to discuss the decision to leave the market.

The brand includes more than 750 locations in the U.S. and Canada. Spokane is the next-closest location in Washington.

Qudoba is owned by Apollo Global Management, a $69 billion New York-based private equity firm that also owns the parent of Chuck E. Cheese’s. Apollo purchased Qdoba from Jack in the Box for $305 million a little more than a year ago, according to Nation’s Restaurant News.

Bloomberg characterized Qdoba as “slumping” at the time.

Wendy Culverwell writes about local government and politics, focusing on how those decisions affect your life. She also covers key business and economic development changes that shape our community. Her restaurant column and health inspection reports are reader favorites. She’s been a news reporter in Washington and Oregon for 25 years.