After months of anticipation for hot dog and Italian beef fans, Portillo's has set the official opening date of June 13 for its new restaurant in Davenport.
Jeff Deppe, director of new restaurant operations, said the Chicago-based chain will host a grand opening at 10:30 a.m. on June 13, at its first Iowa location, at 2741 E. 53rd St., across the street from Costco Wholesale.
He said the restaurant has been holding unofficial events leading up to the grand opening, allowing some customers the chance to sample the Chicago staples.
Portillo's was founded as a hot dog stand in Villa Park, Illinois, by Dick Portillo in 1963. The new restaurant will be the company's 60th location.
Deppe said the company hired about 150 people ahead of the opening, with pay ranging from $10 to $14 per hour.
"Hiring went great," he said. "We went through well over 1,500 applications, which is a great number to say. We feel like we're ahead of the game right now."
Construction is nearly wrapped up at the Portillo's site, Deppe said, but just beginning at neighboring plots.
Developer William Torchia, who also brought Portillo's to Peoria, said work will continue on the land surrounding the restaurant, where nine homes were demolished last year. Plans include the opening of the fast-food chain Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers, plus a First Midwest Bank branch location.
Torchia is still seeking two other tenants to complete the five-lot development.