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Iconic Fondue Franchise, The Melting Pot, Targets Tennessee as the Next Development Market in Its Aggressive Growth Plan

The franchise has identified capacity for six new locations in Tennessee and is currently focusing development efforts on Memphis.

By Erica InmanStaff Writer
SPONSOREDUpdated 4:16PM 11/22/23

MEMPHIS, TN – After an impressive year of unit-level sales growth and system-wide remodeling efforts, The Melting Pot, the 94-unit experiential dining fondue franchise, is eyeing Tennessee for expansion. With capacity for six new locations in the state, the development team is focused intently on establishing a new restaurant in Memphis to support continued growth in the state.

“We’ve seen incredible demand for The Melting Pot in Memphis for decades,” said Bob Johnston, CEO. “It’s clear that the market is amenable to our expansion, and we’re confident that we can establish six successful new locations across Tennessee in the next decade with the right franchise partners.”

With two existing restaurants in the state, the franchise has made a name for itself in the area, and franchisees will enjoy the benefits of existing brand awareness and strong demand as they work to launch.

Further, The Melting Pot has a rich history in Memphis given its strong connection to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. The franchise has partnered with the hospital for two decades now to raise funds and support the development of research and treatments for children with major illnesses.

“We have a very emotional attachment to the city of Memphis,” added Johnston. “Our goal is to find a franchise partner who shares that passion for St. Jude and wants to be the torch-bearer for this worthy organization and continue to build on the 20 years of commitment Melting Pot has already shown.”

The Melting Pot team visits Memphis each year to tour the hospital and personally meet affected families at St. Jude. Organized by Johnston and his wife, Katina, the trip includes members of the leadership team and top charitable earners from restaurants across the country and offers an opportunity for team members to have a closer look at the impact of their fundraising efforts, deepening the system’s connection to Memphis even further each year.

As a legacy brand with over four decades of history, The Melting Pot has established itself as the go-to fondue restaurant for “eatertainment,” connection, celebration and experiential dining in communities nationwide. For franchisees who choose to open a location, the franchise opportunity also presents an opportunity to become a local hero of sorts.

“It is the mission of the brand to provide guests with their perfect night out, whatever that looks like — especially today with what's gone on in the world over the last few years,” Johnston said. “Guests choose us over other options because we carefully craft an environment that encourages gathering with people they care about and spending quality time with them. The Melting Pot provides the perfect environment for that. What happens in a Melting Pot is as much about what's going on around that fondue pot as what's in that pot.”

With robust training and long-term support from a team of experts, Melting Pot owners are prepared to deliver a truly one-of-a-kind dining experience to their communities as they work toward achieving their own entrepreneurial dreams. A streamlined kitchen build-out and increased real estate flexibility also empowers owners to launch more quickly than what would be possible with other, more traditional hospitality concepts, meaning they can become profitable even sooner.

With nearly 75% of restaurants achieving all-time sales records in 2022, it is clear that The Melting Pot is in high demand. A major driver of this traffic has been its push to remodel restaurants’ interiors, refreshing the experience and demonstrating its flexibility and longevity.

The Melting Pot has had a hot start to the year with over 30 restaurants reopening after a push to remodel, and they don’t plan to stop there; the brand is on track to see a total of 60 remodeled reopenings this year alone. As the franchisor continues to work alongside passionate entrepreneurs to drive system growth, it is also targeting expansion in Memphis, Houston, Charleston, Chattanooga and Montgomery.

About Melting Pot

Founded in 1975, Melting Pot has offered a unique fondue dining experience for more than 45 years. As the premier fondue restaurant franchise, Melting Pot has 94 restaurants in 31 U.S. states and Canada. Known for offering a variety of fondue cooking styles and unique entrées, Melting Pot’s menu also features cheese fondues, salads, fine wines, spirits and chocolate fondue desserts. Fondue fans can join Melting Pot’s Club Fondue for exclusive promotions, special events and advance holiday reservation privileges. Melting Pot is an affiliate of Front Burner Brands, a restaurant management company headquartered in Tampa, Florida. For more information, visit To learn more about franchise opportunities with Melting Pot, please visit

About Front Burner

Headquartered in Tampa, Front Burner is the restaurant management company for Melting Pot Restaurants, Inc., the new casual whimsical dining concept Melting Pot Social and fast-casual concept  Oronzo Honest Italian! Melting Pot currently has more than 96 restaurants in 31 U.S. states and Canada. Melting Pot Social opened its first location in July 2021 in Asheville, NC. Oronzo opened its first location in Tampa, FL. in June 2020 and will open a second location in the area in October of 2021. For more information, visit