August 11, 2016

Our Story

Start At The Beginning

August 14


Gregg Harris and John Pepper meet in their hometown, Cincinnati. Gregg was a neighbor of Pepper’s girlfriend and liked to walk her dog. They didn’t see each other again for a long time.
August 15


Adam Liebman and Gregg Harris met while students at Boston University. Gregg was a friend of Adam’s brother, but not Adam.
August 17


Gregg Harris and John Pepper met again while living in San Francisco. They were both fans of the Mission District taqueria scene and the early wrap concept restaurants popping up throughout the city. They talked about how the rest of the country needed wraps as well. Gregg gave John the..Read More
August 20


Gregg, Adam, and Jason moved back to Boston, determined to open an inspired burrito (aka wrap) shop. However, landlords didn’t take them seriously. The search was endless for a first location. John worked on Wall Street for the summer, hated it, and couldn’t figure out what “it” was. John and..Read More
August 23


On February 24, the first Under Wraps opened at 137 Massachusetts Avenue (#1), across from Berklee College of Music. The idea was simple: make the best traditional Mexican burrito possible and then go beyond it, adding other unexpected, bold, and addictive flavors. We also brought in the frozen beverage fad..Read More
August 23


Under Wraps and Wrap Culture are all converted to The Wrap. Harvard Square (#2) and Cleveland Circle (#3)locations were opened. Ever expanding waistlines were being blamed on fast food portions. So, despite the potentially negative effect on the profitability of our business, we introduced the Regular Size burrito, in addition..Read More
August 23


We introduced a matching simple IRA plan for all full-time and most part-time team members. The Buffalo Chicken was first introduced as a special, eventually to become a cult favorite and permanent menu item. A group of customers lobbied for the name “Tatanka,” but when they imitated Kevin Costner with..Read More
August 23


The Wrap and Jera’s Juice joined forces. Each with four locations, the idea was to convert the four Jera’s locations that only served juices and smoothies to “The Wrap featuring Jera’s Juice.” Unfortunately, three of the four Jera’s Juice locations were closed by the end of the year because of..Read More
August 23


Lucky for us, sales grew in our restaurants in 2001 and all restaurants were profitable.  Berlitz was hired to teach English and Spanish to all team members to improve internal communications and to help team members for whom English was a second language take on greater responsibility. The Summer burrito..Read More
August 23


Children’s Hospital (#7) location opened and Pearl Street (#8) location opened in Boston’s Financial District. The Wrap invested in B.good, a start-up healthier burger concept, of which John was a co-founder. All team members became eligible for performance-based bonus plans. The last Jera’s Juice was closed when its lease ran..Read More
August 23


Dartmouth College (#9) location opened in Hanover, NH. Federal Street (#10) location opened in Boston’s Financial District. The Cajun wrap was renamed the Cajun burrito. No changes were made except for the name and sales doubled nearly immediately. The founders continued to question the name “The Wrap.” The Wrap location..Read More
August 23


Mike Harder joined boloco as President and COO. With over 25 years in the business, he made drastic improvements to operations immediately. Referring to these improvements as “low hanging fruit,” he “insulted” the founders who never even knew such “fruit” existed. Customer lines accelerated (from 150 transactions/hour to over 250..Read More
August 23


Dental insurance was offered for the first time. The proclaimed “This CEO Sucks Less,” based on boloco’s long-standing commitment to listen to all feedback and John’s own commitment to respond to customers personally. The Tufts University (#11) location opened. We won “Boston’s Best” award from the Improper Bostonian for..Read More
August 23


We donated $15,000 to a local non-profit, Community Servings. boloco team members also volunteered in Community Servings kitchens and we donated portions of Late November burrito sales and Presidents’ Day sales to CS. We also donated $5,000 to the Prouty event, supporting the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Norris Cotton Cancer Center in Hanover,..Read More
August 23


We became the first fast-casual chain in New England to be Certified Green by the Green Restaurant Association, which, at the time, included things like: **All-natural meats **Comprehensive recycling program (with the goal to be composting by the end of 2008) **Replacing all styrofoam cups with corn-based cups Our chicken..Read More
August 23


The boloco Airstream was launched in front of a crowd of 50,000 at the Mardi Gras parade in Burlington, VT. 400 boloco branded ping pong balls were lost during the parade, which led to a reward offer of 2 burritos for every ping pong ball returned. The boloco Airstream did..Read More
August 23


boloco’s original restaurant on Mass Ave was relocated to 1080 Boylston Street. Surrounded by musical talent, local Berklee College of Music students created The boloco Song. Changes were made based on guest feedback, thanks to a group of boloco lovers (and haters) gathered by the venerable Tom O’Keefe (better known..Read More
August 23


iPhone app? Yeah, we got one (finally). And it was pretty dang cool, too. But nobody used it. That’s ok, it was a start. Nothing was built in a day. Copley Square (#17) finally opened. Its Free Burrito Day in early February drew lines down to Clarendon Street, and, in..Read More
August 23


In February, we celebrated our 15th birthday. And we had to do something big… Go big or go home, right? We set the ambitious goal to raise $25,000 for our friends at Life is Good Playmakers and hosted a Free Burrito Day at every single one of our restaurants. After..Read More
August 23


To kick off 2013, we decided to set out on an important mission: Project Globally Inspired. We started with a trip to Buffalo, to learn more about the origins of one of our most famous items… The Buffalo burrito, of course! Throughout the year, we planned trips from Bangkok to..Read More
August 23


And new options did we bring! First, we changed our tortillas to a newer, lower calorie option and got new, 100% compostable bowls. Those bowls also came in different sizes, the Little Bowl (the size of an Original burrito) and the Big Bowl (even bigger at 40 ounces). To go..Read More
August 23


In honor of the 80th anniversary of Elvis’ birthday, we re-introduced our good friend, the Memphis BBQ. We put on our blue suede shoes and danced our way out of January into a glorious Patriots Super Bowl win, which brought $4 original-sized burritos in honor of their fourth championship win...Read More
July 7