Dave’s Hot Chicken Adds 4 More Orange County Stores

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Dave’s Hot Chicken, the Los Angeles-based street food sensation turned breakthrough fast-casual brand, announced today it has inked a franchise agreement with Bret Crutchfield and Mike DeSanti. Their focus will be on opening restaurants around Lake Forest, Mission Viejo and San Clemente.

“When I first met Bret and Mike, I instantly knew they’d be a perfect fit in the Dave’s Hot Chicken culture. Their excitement to grow the brand is palpable, and the energy they give off is exactly what we want,” said Bill Phelps, CEO of Dave’s Hot Chicken. “We are very eager to see their progress as it unfolds.”

Dave’s Hot Chicken works well in a variety of floor plans. The team is seeking endcaps with drive-thru infrastructure and a footprint of 2,000 to 2,200 square feet.

“Honestly, I’ve never had a fried chicken sandwich that tasted so good. There’s nothing offered in the area that comes close to the flavor and quality found with Dave’s Hot Chicken,” said DeSanti. “Bret and I have always gravitated towards comfort food concepts, plus the simplicity of the operations and everything else the brand offered made them a no-brainer. We love Orange County, and can’t wait to introduce this exciting concept to the people here.”

Crutchfield and DeSanti bring over a decade of restaurant and franchising experience with them to Dave’s Hot Chicken. Plus, they have a strong track record of introducing brands into new markets. In 2010, they brought the sandwich concept Board & Brew from San Diego to Orange County, which gained a cult following and has since exploded in popularity.

“Bret and Mike are exactly the type of operating partners we are looking for to help expand our footprint. They are a perfect fit for our growing brand, and we are confident that they will bring the excitement and experience found in every Dave’s Hot Chicken location,” said Shannon Swenson, Vice President of Franchise Development at Dave’s Hot Chicken. “Their past success with introducing a brand to this region gives us confidence that they are set up to do this well. We are thrilled to continue growing Dave’s Hot Chicken and we are excited for the months ahead.”

Founded by classically-trained chef Dave Kopushyan and three friends in early 2017, Dave’s Hot Chicken initially opened as a parking lot pop-up, with lines quickly wrapping around the block. Since then, the brand has exploded in popularity and now has multiple brick-and-mortar locations open in Southern California. Today, the fast-casual brand has its sights set on growing throughout the United States and currently has more than 200 units committed in less than nine months of announcing the franchise initiative.

Specializing in hot chicken tenders and sliders, with spice levels ranging from “No Spice” to “Reaper,” each restaurant also serves sides of house-made Kale Slaw, creamy Mac & Cheese and crispy Fries or Cheese Fries.

Dave’s Hot Chicken offers a robust business model, including national and local marketing support, proven systems, manuals and operating procedures, as well as assistance with site selection. As the brand expands, it is seeking qualified, experienced and passionate restaurant operators and franchise groups to develop the concept in key markets.

To learn more about Dave’s Hot Chicken and its franchise opportunities, visit https://www.daveshotchicken.com/franchising.

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