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Cramer’s appetite for Noodles, other savories

Noodles vs. Potbelly battle

(Click for video linked to a searchable transcript of this Mad Money segment)

Up 20% year to date and 104% at the IPO, how does Cramer feel about Noodles?

"If you own , I would take profits in at least half your position here, then put Noodles on your shopping list so you can buy some more at lower levels," Cramer said.

Largely the Mad Money host thinks it will take time for Noodles to settle into its valuation.

"Noodles trades at 81 times next year's earnings estimates with a 28% long-term growth rate," reminded Cramer. "That's an absurdly high multiple--the kind of thing you'd expect to see from a fast growing tech stock, not a restaurant chain."

"My rule of thumb even for high-flying momentum stocks is that you don't want to pay more than twice the growth rate, meaning 56 times earnings in the case of Noodles," Cramer said.

But that doesn't mean the stock is a short. Not for a second.

Cramer said that Noodles is a 'regional to national' story and that bullish long-term.

Echo | Cultura | Getty Images

"That means Noodles has a strong concept that has proven successful in a particular part of the country," Cramer explained.

"Noodles plans to open 38 to 42 new company owned locations for 2013, increasing their store count by 14%, and management has said they believe they can ultimately get to 2,500 stores, meaning they can keep up that same level of growth for the next fifteen years."

Therefore, Cramer believes growth investors will propel this stock higher for quite some time.

Long-term the story is strong with Noodles filling a niche that few other fast food restaurants can rival. "They sell noodles of all varieties, from mac and cheese to pasta to pad thai."

However, "With the consumer just starting to feel the worry of the government shutdown, I have to be concerned about where Noodles could trade in the not so distant future."

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On a related note, Cramer said if you're long Potbelly, another high flying food IPO, he thinks this is a good time to take profits.

Although is also a 'regional to national' story, Cramer worries that as a sandwich shop it's facing much stronger competition.

"If you got in on the like I told you to, it's time to take a victory lap," Cramer said. "Considering Potbelly spiked 120% when it started trading last Friday, and it kept right on going in Monday's session anything other than profit taking else would be pure greed."

Call Cramer: 1-800-743-CNBC

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