Chi’Lantro Shark Tank Update: From Food Truck to Flavor Empire

When Chi’Lantro BBQ rolled into the Shark Tank, they brought with them the tantalizing aroma of Korean BBQ fused with Mexican flavors. It’s a combination that caught the Sharks’ attention and had viewers drooling at their screens. But what’s happened since that memorable pitch? It’s time for a Chi’Lantro Shark Tank update, and trust us, it’s as flavorful as their signature kimchi fries.

Since appearing on the show, Chi’Lantro has gone through a whirlwind of growth and changes. They’ve expanded their footprint, diversified their menu, and continued to capture the hearts (and stomachs) of foodies everywhere. Let’s dive into the juicy details of their journey post-Shark Tank.

Key Takeaways

  • Chi’Lantro BBQ successfully pitched on Shark Tank, highlighting their unique Korean-Mexican fusion cuisine, especially their signature Kimchi Fries, and secured a $600,000 investment for a 15% equity, showcasing the potential the Sharks saw in their business model and expansion plans.
  • Post-Shark Tank, Chi’Lantro experienced remarkable growth, moving from a single food truck to over five brick-and-mortar locations in Austin, Texas, driven by their appearance on the show and the strategic investments that followed.
  • The fusion between Korean BBQ and Mexican flavors, dubbed “KoMex,” positioned Chi’Lantro at the forefront of culinary innovation, with a menu that resonates with a wide audience by blending spicy, savory, and tangy tastes, encapsulated in their famous Kimchi Fries.
  • Chi’Lantro has diversified its menu to include vegetarian and gluten-free options, responding to broader dietary preferences and trends, which has helped capture a more significant market share and build a loyal customer base.
  • Their continuous innovation, seen in seasonal specials and limited-time offerings, along with maintaining high-quality ingredients, has not only captivated foodies’ hearts but has also set a benchmark for creativity and excellence in the fast-casual dining industry.

The Memorable Pitch on Shark Tank

When Chi’Lantro BBQ stepped onto the Shark Tank stage, they brought with them not just the aroma of Korean BBQ but also a slice of entrepreneurial spirit that captured the hearts and taste buds of the Sharks and audience alike. Founded by Jae Kim, a visionary who turned his food truck dream into a reality, Chi’Lantro aimed to revolutionize the fast-casual dining experience with its Korean-Mexican fusion cuisine.

Kim’s pitch was not just about numbers; it was a narrative of passion, hard work, and the pursuit of the American dream. With a compelling backstory of starting with a single food truck in Austin, Texas, and growing it into a thriving business, he was there to seek an investment to further expand his burgeoning empire.

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The tension in the room was palpable as Kim delivered his pitch with confidence. He asked for $600,000 in exchange for a 15% stake in his company, a valuation that prompted the Sharks to sit up and take notice. His pitch was interspersed with tastings of Chi’Lantro’s signature offering, the Kimchi Fries — a dish that won over the Sharks with its bold flavors and innovative approach to fusion cuisine.

The negotiation phase was intense, with several Sharks showing interest. The back-and-forth dialogue, the calculations, and the strategic maneuvers showcased the intricate dance of making a deal on Shark Tank. Kim’s business acumen shone through as he fielded questions, defended his valuation, and painted a vivid picture of Chi’Lantro’s future.

Asking Investment Equity Offered Notable Offering
$600,000 15% Kimchi Fries

In what was a testament to the strength of Kim’s pitch and the potential seen in Chi’Lantro, a deal was struck. This moment marked the beginning of a new chapter for Chi’Lantro BBQ, one that would see them leverage the Shark Tank effect to fuel their expansion and innovate their menu further. Their appearance on Shark Tank wasn’t just memorable for the flavors they introduced; it was a showcase of entrepreneurial grit and the power of a well-crafted pitch.

The Flavorful Combination of Korean BBQ and Mexican Flavors

Chi’Lantro BBQ, a standout on Shark Tank for its innovative fusion, masterfully combines flavors from Korean BBQ and Mexican cuisine, creating a culinary experience that’s both unique and delicious. This bold blend, which they’ve dubbed the magic of “KoMex,” offers food enthusiasts a taste of two cultures in a single bite.

At the heart of their menu lies the famous Kimchi Fries – a dish that deftly demonstrates their culinary philosophy. Piled high with caramelized kimchi, bulgogi, topped with fresh cilantro, onions, and their signature “Magic Sauce,” this dish exemplifies how seamlessly Korean flavors can meld with Mexican staples to produce something extraordinary.

Chi’Lantro’s success lies not only in their food’s flavor but also in the versatility of their menu. From the spicy and fermentative undertones of Korean cuisine to the robust and hearty textures of Mexican dishes, they’ve curated a menu that appeals to a broad audience. Customers can enjoy everything from tacos filled with marinated Korean BBQ to burritos that encase flavors distinct to Seoul.

Their commitment to quality ingredients plays a crucial role in their flavor profile. By selecting only the freshest produce and premium meats, Chi’Lantro ensures that each menu item not only meets but exceeds customer expectations.

The enthusiastic embrace by fans and foodies alike highlights the growing popularity of fusion cuisine. Chi’Lantro BBQ has not only managed to carve out a niche for itself post-Shark Tank but has also set a high bar for creativity in the food industry.

Chi’Lantro’s Growth and Expansion

Since their unforgettable pitch on Shark Tank, Chi’Lantro BBQ has been on an impressive growth trajectory. They’ve not only increased their number of locations but have also diversified their menu, making their mark on the culinary world with their unique KoMex fusion.

Initially a single food truck roaming the streets of Austin, Texas, Chi’Lantro has expanded to multiple brick-and-mortar locations. This expansion is a testament to their popularity and the demand for their innovative dishes. Their journey from a mobile eatery to a beloved restaurant chain is a bold reminder of the Shark Tank effect and its ability to propel businesses to new heights.

Year Number of Locations
Pre-Shark Tank 1
Post-Shark Tank 5+

Menu innovation has been at the heart of Chi’Lantro’s growth. They’ve taken their famous Kimchi Fries and built an entire menu that pushes the boundaries of traditional Korean and Mexican cuisine. Their ability to blend flavors and ingredients has set them apart in a crowded food scene, offering a culinary experience that is both familiar and novel.

The success of Chi’Lantro BBQ serves as inspiration for entrepreneurs everywhere. It highlights the potential rewards of stepping into the Shark Tank and the importance of passion, creativity, and perseverance in the entrepreneurial journey. Their expansion and innovation continue to captivate foodies and inspire fellow entrepreneurs, showing what’s possible with a great idea and the courage to pursue it relentlessly.

Chi’Lantro’s story underscores the transformative impact that Shark Tank can have on emerging businesses. Their growth and expansion serve as a beacon to other restaurateurs and food innovators, confirming that with the right mix of flavor, hard work, and a little bit of television magic, the sky’s the limit.

Diversifying the Menu and Capturing Foodies’ Hearts

Since their memorable appearance on Shark Tank, Chi’Lantro BBQ has continually adapted and flourished, much to the delight of food enthusiasts everywhere. Beyond the fame of their signature Kimchi Fries, the team has poured heart and soul into crafting a menu that marries the bold flavors of Korean and Mexican cuisine, creating an unforgettable dining experience.

Chi’Lantro’s success lies not only in the uniqueness of their offerings but also in their commitment to quality and innovation. The menu now boasts a variety of dishes, each telling a story of culinary fusion that resonates with a diverse audience. From the spicy and savory BBQ bowls to the refreshing and tangy Korean fried chicken wings, there’s something for every palate.

The expansion of their menu has also allowed Chi’Lantro to cater to a broader range of dietary preferences. Vegetarian and gluten-free options are available, ensuring that everyone can find something to love. This inclusivity has been key in building a loyal following and establishing Chi’Lantro as a staple in the fast-casual dining scene.

Foodies have taken particular notice of Chi’Lantro’s seasonal specials and limited-time offerings, eagerly anticipating what delightful combination they might serve up next. The excitement surrounding these unique dishes generates buzz on social media, further elevating the brand’s profile among culinary enthusiasts.

Chi’Lantro BBQ’s journey since Shark Tank highlights the power of passion and perseverance in the entrepreneurial world. By continuously diversifying their menu and staying true to their innovative roots, they’ve not only captured foodies’ hearts but have also set a high bar for culinary innovation in the fast-casual industry.

The Juicy Details of Chi’Lantro’s Journey Post-Shark Tank

After their memorable appearance on Shark Tank, Chi’Lantro BBQ took the feedback and investment from the Sharks and literally turned up the heat on their expansion. They went from being a favorite local food truck to a fast-casual dining powerhouse. Let’s dive into how Chi’Lantro leveraged their Shark Tank success to elevate their brand and menu.

Initially known for their innovative and delicious Kimchi Fries, Chi’Lantro has since expanded their menu to introduce a plethora of dishes that cleverly blend Korean and Mexican flavors. The creativity didn’t stop there; they’ve catered to various dietary preferences by adding vegetarian and gluten-free options, ensuring everyone can find something to savor.

One of the most exciting developments has been their brick-and-mortar expansion. Prior to Shark Tank, Chi’Lantro operated out of a single food truck cruising through Austin, Texas. Now, they boast several locations across the city, each with the same casual vibe but an expanded seating capacity. This growth has allowed them to reach more foodies and casual diners alike.

Key Achievements Details
Expansion Post-Shark Tank Multiple brick-and-mortar locations in Austin
Menu Diversification Introduction of vegetarian and gluten-free options
Innovation Seasonal specials and limited-time offerings

Chi’Lantro’s journey post-Shark Tank is a testament to what’s possible with the right mix of passion, innovation, and strategic investment. Their ability to pivot and adapt to the market’s needs while staying true to their unique flavor profile has been key to their continued success. As they’ve expanded, they’ve managed to maintain the quality and creativity that first won the Sharks and their loyal customers over.

Their tale is far from over, and there’s a palpable sense of anticipation to see where Chi’Lantro’s culinary adventures will take them next.


Chi’Lantro BBQ’s journey from a single food truck to a beloved chain is a testament to the power of innovation and adaptability. Their story isn’t just about the fusion of Korean and Mexican cuisines but also about understanding and catering to the evolving tastes of their customers. By continuously introducing new dishes and embracing dietary preferences, they’ve not only expanded their menu but their customer base as well. Chi’Lantro’s success post-Shark Tank serves as an inspiring example for aspiring entrepreneurs everywhere, proving that with enough passion and perseverance, it’s possible to turn a dream into a thriving reality. Their growth and the excitement they’ve generated among food lovers are clear indicators that Chi’Lantro BBQ is here to stay and will continue to spice up the fast-casual dining scene for years to come.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Chi’Lantro BBQ?

Chi’Lantro BBQ is a restaurant that blends Korean and Mexican cuisine, famous for their signature dish, the Kimchi Fries. Originating as a single food truck in Austin, Texas, they have expanded into multiple brick-and-mortar locations since their appearance on Shark Tank.

How has Chi’Lantro BBQ expanded since Shark Tank?

Since appearing on Shark Tank, Chi’Lantro BBQ has opened multiple brick-and-mortar locations in Austin, Texas. They’ve diversified their menu, introducing new dishes that blend Korean and Mexican flavors, and catered to various dietary preferences including vegetarian and gluten-free options.

What makes Chi’Lantro BBQ’s menu unique?

Chi’Lantro BBQ’s menu is unique for its innovative blend of Korean and Mexican flavors. Their famous Kimchi Fries are a prime example, and they continue to introduce new dishes that maintain this unique culinary fusion while also offering seasonal specials and limited-time offerings.

Does Chi’Lantro BBQ offer options for different dietary preferences?

Yes, Chi’Lantro BBQ caters to a broad range of dietary preferences by offering vegetarian and gluten-free options, ensuring that there’s something for everyone to enjoy at their restaurants.

How has Chi’Lantro BBQ’s journey on Shark Tank impacted their business?

Chi’Lantro BBQ’s success on Shark Tank has significantly boosted their business, enabling them to expand their reach, open multiple locations, and enrich their menu with innovative dishes that continue to attract a wide customer base. Their journey underscores the importance of passion and perseverance in the entrepreneurial world.