Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises
|Founded||1971 in Chicago, Illinois|
|Founder(s)||Rich Melman & Jerry A. Orzoff|
|Headquarters||Chicago, Illinois, USA|
|Key people||Rich Melman, co-founder
Jerry A. Orzoff, co-founder
|Revenue||$300 million (2005)|
|Net income||$50 million (2005)|
The company lists nine original partners: Bill Higgins, Melman, Bill Frost, Bob Wattel, Danny Coval, Charles Haskell, Orzoff, Marvin Magid, and Fred Joast. By 1976 the company had 5 restaurants. The partners continued expanding the company's network of restaurants. By the mid-1980s, the company employed over 2,000 people and had annual revenues of $40 million. Since its founding the company has opened 130 restaurants, with 70 concepts.
The restaurants are unique and vary in price, theme, and cuisine. However, they generally combine theatrical flair and good value. LEYE currently owns, licenses or manages more than 60 establishments in Illinois, Arizona, Maryland, Virginia, Georgia, Minnesota and Nevada, including Wildfire, Petterino's, Di Pescara, Shaw's Crab House, and Everest. Also among its creations are two restaurants in the Paris Casino on the Las Vegas Strip, Eiffel Tower and Mon Ami Gabi (an expansion of the flagship location in Chicago), Big Bowl, and L2O. The newest, opened in fall 2013, is Three Dots and a Dash in Chicago, Illinois.
As of 2000, LEYE had 38 partners, 45 concepts, and 4,000 employees. It owns, operates and licenses 90 restaurant venues, in the United States. It has separate restaurant consulting and restaurant development companies. The food court at Water Tower Place is among its operations. 1999 annual revenue estimates ranged from $145 to over $200 million. 2005 revenue estimates were $300 million, with 5000 employees and approximately $50 million in net earnings.
Lettuce Entertain You restaurants include:
- Antico Posto
- Big Bowl
- Big Bowl Chinese Express
- Bub City
- Cafe Ba-Ba-Reeba!
- Community Canteen
- Di Pescara
- Don & Charlie’s
- Eiffel Tower
- El Segundo Sol
- Frankie's Scaloppine & Fifth Floor Pizzeria
- Hub 51
- Joe's Seafood Prime Steak & Stone Crab - an offshoot of Joe's Stone Crab in Miami
- Krispy Kreme (franchisee)
- L. Woods 
- Maggiano's Little Italy (consultant)
- Magic Pan Crepe Stand
- M Burger
- M Street Kitchen
- Mity Nice Grill
- Mon Ami Gabi
- Nacional 27
- Osteria Via Stato
- Paris Club
- Pizzeria Via Stato
- Reel Club
- R.J. Grunt's
- RPM Italian
- Stella Barra Pizzeria
- Shaw’s Crab House
- Tokio Pub
- Three Dots and a Dash
- Tucci Benucch
- Twin City Grill
- Wow Bao
- Zeldes, Leah A. (2011-06-02). "Happy 40th anniversary, Lettuce Entertain You". Dining Chicago. Retrieved 2011-06-06.
- "The Lettuce Entertain You Story". Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises Inc. Retrieved 2007-02-02.
- Wilson, Mark R. (2005). ""Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises Inc.", Encyclopedia of Chicago". Chicago Historical Society. Retrieved 2007-02-02.
- Carpenter, Dave (2006-07-20). "Restaurateur sees salad days ahead". MSNBC.com (Associated Press story also published on CBSNews.com). Retrieved 2007-02-02.
- Kleiman, Dena (1991-02-13). "Retro Magnate Moves East". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). Retrieved 2008-08-04.
- Cebrzynski, Gregg (January 2000). "Richard Melman - chief executive officer of Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises Inc". Nation's Restaurant News. Retrieved 2007-02-02.
- "Tiki bars offer taste of the tropics". Chicago Tribune. 2013-08-29.
- Sheridan, Margaret (2000). "Richard Melman on Savoring Peace of Mind". Restaurant & Institutions Magazine. Retrieved 2007-02-02.
- Olvera, Jennifer (July 2008). "Block Party:After years of highs and lows — and plenty of wheeling and dealing — the first new building at Block 37 is set to rise this month". Chicago Social. p. 68.