STACKED Restaurants Turns 5! #FoodWellBuilt



It was five years ago this month that co-founders Paul Motenko and Jerry Hennessy opened the first STACKED: Food Well Built in Torrance, Calif. Now with four additional restaurants in Thousand Oaks, Cerritos, Huntington Beach, and San Diego, STACKED estimates that guests have customized more than 3 million meals including: 764,323 burgers, 658,673 salads, 305,815 pizzas and 352,825 Mac ‘n’ Cheese dishes. That’s a lot of culinary creativity, no?!

I’ve been lucky to get to enjoy STACKED a few times on behalf of my blog, with my love. Funny story? When we headed to Thousand Oaks to enjoy an evening at STACKED, it was just days before Michael proposed, and I knew something fishy was up. After enjoying my wine flight and getting that food coma setting in after my meal, I went so far as to ASK Mike if he was proposing, since we were heading to The Getty Museum that weekend with friends of ours. I fear I marry a great liar, as he had me convinced our Sunday afternoon was simply to enjoy art, and, I believed him! 😉

Well, we all know how that week panned out, and I was thrilled to head back to one of my favorites to enjoy my gluten-free faves. This time, engaged!

Date night.
Date night.

At STACKED, the sky is pretty much the limit. From menu favorites, which is a great choice if you cannot make up your mind or are re-thinking that pizza with every topping possible (which they would gladly do) to customizing a dish yourself, the choice is yours. When you arrive at your table, you will see that along with the traditional menus, there is also a nifty iPad you can also use to scroll through the selections or create your own salad, burger, mac and cheese, pizza, drink, dessert…you get the idea.

Michael and I always spend our sweet time weighing our options, debating what sauces to get, or what milkshake to build. While they have thousands of gluten-free combinations you can make (from pizzas to burgers), I can never resist their mac and cheese with gluten-free pasta. This time, I managed to vary things up a bit and create my OWN dish. Mary’s latest favorite? Cajun shrimp, sun-dried tomatoes, red peppers, mushrooms, garlic and topped with Parmesan. Absolute perfection!


Michael definitely tempted me, he decided on one of their pizzas and it paired fabulously with his wine flight, as did mine with my pasta.

Along with the galore of cuisine to choose from, STACKED also has an unbeatable wine, beer and spirits menu. We both chose a wine flight; select 3 wines from their Wine List and get a tasting of each. I have done this on my last two visits and its an ideal way to see which wine pairs well with your meal, and, simply, try a few of their best.

As you can see below, I really loved my macaroni and cheese. New from last time, they are now serving the pasta favorite in an iron skillet. I was convinced it was also a smaller portion (which was fine with me) but, nope. It is the same amount of food, just in a more secure way to keep it warm. Previously served in a large bowl, I definitely noticed the cheese got colder rather quickly, and, now, warm goodness the entire supper.


Since I decided to pretend I had eaten less, we checked out the DESSERT fare and opted to split their Mocha Almond Fudge milkshake. While the chocolate and almond flavors were there, we surprisingly did not taste much coffee, that didn’t stop us from finishing that glass off, too.


If you find yourself in SoCal, make sure to check out one of the STACKED locations to serve you, and make sure to tell ’em Along Comes Mary sent you! xo