Derrick Hayes, CEO and founder of Big Dave’s Cheesesteaks, is bringing his award-winning take on West Philadelphia classics to a new location in Forest Park, Georgia this spring. Located at 4495 Jonesboro Road, the latest addition will serve as the brand’s third Atlanta-area location, offering mouth-watering flavors from his hometown of Philly in the form of beef, chicken and salmon cheesesteaks, hand-rolled egg rolls and other melty, larger-than-life flavors for all to enjoy. 

Anchored by the cheesesteaks that started it all, the Jonesboro Road menu will offer a counter-service selection of beef, chicken and salmon cheesesteaks – each masterfully flavor-bombed with an overflow of melt-in-your-mouth toppings and sandwiched between a traditional Amoroso roll – Philly fries smothered with favorite cheesesteak fixings, hand-rolled egg rolls, a selection of Philly-inspired salads and beverages. Ranked as one of the “Top 10 Best Sandwiches” in the world by World Food Champions, the restaurant will be open for lunch and dinner and available for counter-service dine-in and takeout.  

“We’re really excited to expand our brand to the Forest Park and Jonesboro communities,” says Hayes. “To see what Big Dave’s has become since our humble beginnings in a Dunwoody gas station has been a dream come true. Thank you to everyone who has always supported us – we are committed to keep bringing the epic taste of west Philly to your neighborhoods!” 

Regularly generating lines around the block, Big Dave’s is one of the fastest-growing businesses in the Southeast. With current locations in downtown Atlanta and neighboring Doraville, Georgia, Jonesboro Road will feature the brand’s iconic menu alongside an expansive covered patio and walk-up window. The location will mark the brand’s third brick-and-mortar in addition to a food truck and multiple units within the city’s famed Mercedes-Benz Stadium. 

A West Philadelphia native, restaurateur and philanthropist, founder Derrick Hayes understands the value of hard work, dedication and perseverance. After falling into trouble with the law as a young man, Derrick found himself granted with an unexpected second chance and vowed to dedicate his time to giving back to his community while building a business to bring Atlanta a taste of his Philly roots. Soon after, Big Dave’s – a restaurant known for mouth-watering cheesesteaks and other Philly-inspired flavors – was born.  

In 2022, Big Dave’s Cheesesteaks expanded its empire with the launch of the brand’s new product venture, Big Dave’s All Purpose Spice – a smoky seasoning salt with a hint of sweetness. Available exclusively at all Big Dave’s locations and via the company’s online store for nationwide shipping, the recipe is thoughtfully blended to universally enhance dishes like burgers, chicken, ribs, steaks, vegetables, fish and more. 

As an extension of the brand’s community commitment, Derrick established the David & Derrick Hayes Foundation – a foundation honoring his father in support of early detection and cancer research, the David & Derrick Hayes College Fund that provides quarterly funding to deserving students with a 3.0 GPA or higher, and Square 1: The Liife Experience – a program Derrick founded with his fiance Pinky Cole (founder of the wildly successful Slutty Vegan) with an initiative to provide 25,000 Black men across the nation with full access and awareness to life insurance to support their health and generate generational wealth within the black community.

A self-made entrepreneur, restaurateur and philanthropist, Derrick has been nationally recognized by Forbes, Good Morning America, Black Enterprise, RevoltTV, People Magazine, Red Table Talk and many more. In 2021, he was named to the Forbes Next 1000 list, and even graced the cover of Essence Magazine with Pinky Cole.

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