Not only do the CEO and President and come from top posts at Chipotle— from the days when it was owned by McDonald's—but they're both June market brides, with Chipotle walking down the IPO aisle in June 2006.
The operating similarities are so great that San Diego restaurant consultant, John Gordon, wrote a piece on Seeking Alpha headlined, "Is Noodles the Next Chipotle."
Just because they went public the same month and the top executives helped put Chipotle on the map, however, doesn't necessarily mean Noodles and Chipotle are in the same league.
Notably different: Same-store sales. Chipotle's were ramping at 10.2 percent in fiscal 2005. At its IPO, Noodles were just up 5.2 percent in fiscal 2012.
Drilling down into the company's IPO prospectus, and same-store sales story is downright troublesome—growing at a mere 2.2 percent in it most recently reported quarter, or roughly a third of that quarter's year-earlier 6.8 percent. (The good news: At 2.2 percent in the current economy, Noodle's is trending better than Chipotle, whose same-store sales a quarter ago were just 1 percent.)