CRESTVIEW — Take-and-bake pizza and sit-and-enjoy sandwiches, pastries and soups are coming to town with Papa Murphy's and Panera Bread's late-summer opening.
The chain eateries' Crestview franchises will be tenants in a shopping center under construction between Starbucks and Golden Asian Buffet on South Ferdon Boulevard.
Papa Murphy's, founded in 1981, is the world's fifth-largest pizza chain, according to its website, but customers don't eat at the store. Instead, patrons order from a menu including several varieties of stuffed braided-crust pizzas or a create-your-own option; then, they take the prepared pizza home and bake it in their oven.
The Crestview location — which joins properties in Gulf Breeze and Niceville under the same regional franchise owner — will tentatively hire 20 employees.
The Panera Bread bakery-café will feature dine-in and take-away options, including a drive-up window. It will be one of the first in the region to offer what company CEO Ron Shaich dubbed "Panera 2.0."
A Rapid Pick-Up advance ordering and payment system will let customers bypass counter clerks by ordering and paying online or from a mobile device, Panera Regional Marketing Manager Amanda Saxon said.
Patrons who dine in the café will avoid what Shaich called "the mosh pit" of trying to place an order and then dodge other customers as they pick up their food.
"We will begin hiring approximately 50 associates, managers and bakers in July," Saxon said, adding interested applicants can apply here.