Entrepreneur Brings Fast-Casual “Better Chicken” Brand to the Pelican State; Opens First of Three Locations
Slim Chickens, a leader in the “better chicken” segment of fast-casual restaurants, will be expanding its fresh chicken concept with unrivaled flavor to Louisiana for the first time with an opening in West Monroe. The restaurant, which is located at 5081 Cypress Street, will open on January 18th and is being brought to the region by experienced entrepreneur Alan Smith.
Focusing on life-changing chicken, the brand has developed a niche in its sector of the restaurant industry for product quality that is second to none. With fresh ingredients and minimal freezer space in every restaurant, Slim Chickens honors a commitment to homemade recipes and strong supplier partnerships, ensuring guests can feel good about the food they eat. The down-home Southern brand offers diners hand-breaded or grilled chicken tenders paired with a choice of eight handmade dipping sauces or seven wing sauces for exceptional flavor that has earned admiration from both customers and critics. If guests want to switch it up, Slim Chickens also offers salads, wraps and chicken and waffles. To offset the savory side of the menu, rotating desserts served in Mason jars are also available.
Smith has nearly 40 years of restaurant experience under his belt. While attending the University of Arkansas, he began his career in the industry working at Mazzio’s Italian Eatery in Fayetteville. Upon graduating with a bachelor’s degree in business, he spent the next 15 years growing with the company and helping develop restaurants in numerous states. Smith then joined the Applebee’s family, where over the course of 22 years has taken over ownership of 13 locations throughout Texas, Louisiana and Arkansas.
“My passion for the industry sparked at such a young age, and my ability to grow and succeed with such successful brands is going to be a major benefit when looking at expansion opportunities for Slim Chickens in Louisiana,” said Smith. “I understand what it takes to run a successful business, and I am excited to start this new adventure with Slim Chickens.”
The West Monroe location is a jumping off point for a larger growth strategy throughout Louisiana. Smith is spearheading the expansion of Slim Chickens throughout the Northern region of the state focusing on adding locations in Shreveport, Ruston and Minden to begin.
“Our plan is to track the success of our first location and then analyze the best markets for expansion after we can assess our client base,” Smith said. “We’re the first Slim Chickens in the area and we’re excited to bring a reputable brand that we know people are going to enjoy to Louisiana.”
The brand has seen great success in the last several years expanding from its home state of Arkansas into Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska and Illinois, emerging as a national player to establish fast-casual dining’s “better chicken” segment.
“Our top-of-the-line product offerings have propelled us into a league of our own with no competitors doing quite what we are doing,” said Sam Rothschild, COO of Slim Chickens. “Our freshly made Southern dishes and homemade recipes make loyal customers feel good about the food they are eating, and we’re really proud to be able to share the brand experience with a new community.”
Slim Chickens opened in 2003 in Fayetteville, Arkansas, with a focus on culinary excellence in a fast-casual setting. Guests can always expect fresh chicken tenders and wings cooked to order and served with handmade dipping sauces made from scratch. With more than 25 locations today and a fanatical following in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, and Illinois, the eternally cool brand is an emerging national franchise leading the “better chicken” segment and intends to grow nationwide to a footprint of 600 restaurants over the next decade. Southern hospitality is not just for the South; everyone, everywhere can appreciate honest food and socializing with friends and neighbors. To learn more about the brand, visit slimchickens.com.