Debuted in 2014 in East Texas, Fast-Casual Concept Offers Modern Dining Experience Around Familiar American Fare with a Culinary Twist
Plano, Tex.-based Homestyle Dining LLC has launched a national franchising program aimed at bringing its highly successful, well-received, new fast-casual concept, Cole’s Backyard Grill, to neighborhoods, towns, and cities across the United States. Cole’s Backyard Grill is a modern dining experience built around familiar American fare with a culinary twist offered at reasonable prices in a welcoming, comfortable and eclectic environment reminiscent of backyard gatherings with friends and family.
The concept, originally introduced in May 2014 as Bo’s Steak & Grill as an incubator test concept, recently underwent a name change to better reflect the ambiance, menu and personality of the fast casual restaurant that has become a favorite dining spot among guests of all ages in its hometown of Lindale, Tex. With the introduction of the new name, and several exciting enhancements to the menu and kitchen operations, the brand is now in an optimal position to expand nationally.
The franchise program debuts with special incentives including reductions in franchise and royalty fees for the first 10 deals. The “Pioneering Program” significantly reduces the initial franchise fee from $29,500 to $19,500, and royalty fees from 5 percent to 3 percent with the cumulative 15-year royalty savings potentially covering a majority, if not all of, the entire FF&E and build-out conversion expenses. According to Tom Sacco, CEO, Homestyle Dining, which owns, operates and franchises Cole’s Backyard Grill, the early-entry discount can translate into hundreds of thousands of real dollar savings.
“During the past year, we’ve worked diligently to refine every detail, every menu item, our speed of cooking along with our service model to make Cole’s Backyard Grill a favorite gathering spot in cities and towns across the country,” said Sacco. “Based on guest input during the past year and additional consumer research, Cole’s Backyard Grill is now in an enviable position, offering an entirely fresh, fast-casual dining experience built around creatively redefined but refreshingly familiar American food at reasonable prices in a comfortable and welcoming environment. We are looking for qualified restaurant operators, single or multi-unit, who want to grow with us and introduce this new and exciting brand of hospitality to America and beyond.”
Expansion plans include recruiting qualified franchisees to open a dozen locations in 2016 with a goal of approximately 100 restaurants during the next five years in the U.S. and internationally and breaking the 250 restaurant threshold beyond 2020.
The first franchise location is under development in The Dells, Wis., and is expected to open in late 2015. Franchisees Wayne and Jill Manternach are successful owners and operators of a Ponderosa Steakhouse restaurant in The Dells that opened in August 1995. Homestyle Dining also owns and operates the Ponderosa Steakhouse and Bonanza Steak & BBQ restaurant brands.
The typical Cole’s building will be approximately 2,500 to 3,000 square feet, not including the patio, and will seat around 100 guests. The company expects the concept to perform well in smaller towns and cities, but should do exceptionally well in larger suburban and urban areas as well.
Cole’s franchisees will be able to leverage a corporate training program, site selection assistance, food distribution and national procurement relationships, grand opening support, marketing support, franchisee field support, as well as many other proven programs from a well-established and seasoned management team. For more information about franchising opportunities, visit http://www.colesbackyardgrill.com/franchise.
Cole’s Backyard Grill offers its guests a truly unique experience around a rich, flavorful and creative menu at fast casual pricing in a warm and comfortable environment. At the heart of the creatively redefined American menu is a selection of mouthwatering steaks grilled to perfection, and American classic entrees, such as the best-selling Chicken Fried Steak, a Beer Can Chicken marinated in Shiner Bock, a flavorful, healthy Cilantro Lime Salmon, Black Angus Burgers and a new Chicken Fried Chicken.
Uniquely prepared sides include Cole’s Baked Sweet Potato rolled in maple syrup and coated in crushed rock candy served with cinnamon honey butter, a four-cheese Mac’ N’ Cheese, Sweet Potato Fries and freshly prepared twice daily, homemade potato chips. Cole’s Candied Bacon appetizer has become a fast favorite along with Cole’s unique brand of Brisket Nachos and Cole’s Deviled Eggs with flavors that rotate each month.
Cole’s Backyard Grill also features a build-your-own, fresh-tossed Farm-to-Market fresh salad bar where an attendant builds each guest their own customized salad with locally sourced fresh produce, quinoa, kale, black beans and other vegetables. Guests can also enjoy a selection of premium wines, craft and domestic beer, specialty cocktails, and a housemade, fresh Lemonade.
Founded by Homestyle Dining of Plano, Tex., owners of the Ponderosa Steakhouse and Bonanza Steak & BBQ restaurants, Cole’s first location in Lindale, Tex., will be followed by up to 100 restaurants in the next five years. For more information, visit www.colesbackyardgrill.com.