PLAINVILLE - Fans of Frankieâ€™s famous hot dogs wonâ€™t have to wait much longer to chow down on their favorites.
The chainâ€™s new location at 177 East St. is undergoing its final renovations and owner Armand Castico said it is on track to open March 1.
Castico had managed the Bristol location for 34 years, but said it was time to expand to a bigger, newer building. The new building is 1,000 square feet bigger and will include a private dining area that can be reserved for events, a dining patio and a walk-up order window.
â€śI first started working for Frankieâ€™s when I was a teenager and it was franchised around Connecticut with 20 locations,â€ť said Castico. â€śWhen I closed down the Bristol location last October, mine was one of five locations remaining, including the original, which opened in 1933 on Watertown Avenue in Waterbury. We had a lot of loyal customers, especially the seniors, whom I have always given a 10 percent discount. That discount will continue at our new location.â€ť
Castico said he also attributes his success to putting out a consistent, high-quality and affordable product.
â€śWe got a good price for this location, which had sat gutted for eight years,â€ť said Castico. â€śWeâ€™ve spent a lot of time and a lot of money getting it ready, but once we start hanging pictures in here, it will look 10 times better than our old location. It is a major step up, with more space, a higher ceiling and a nicer atmosphere overall.â€ť
Another change that will be coming to the new location is on the menu. While Castico will still be offering favorites from Bristol, he will be introducing daily specials.
As for the future of Frankieâ€™s, Castico said he plans to manage the location for another four to five years and then, ultimately, pass it on to his son, Jake.
â€śI just turned 60, so Iâ€™m getting ready to retire,â€ť he said. â€śMy son has been working for me for the past three years and he will be able to continue to provide the same consistent quality our customers have enjoyed. I am hoping that our loyal customers from Bristol and Forestville donâ€™t mind driving a couple extra minutes over to Plainville to come visit us.â€ť
Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or firstname.lastname@example.org.