Hurricane BTW, a new fast and casual restaurant concept developed by the national Hurricane Grill & Wings brand, announced plans to open 49 BTW locations in the next 42 months. The first Hurricane BTW prototype location will open in Skokie, Illinois, in late April and eight to 10 more will follow by the end of the year. The brand’s lab store opened in April of 2016 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, where it still resides.
Hurricane BTW offers fast and casual service, high design aesthetic in-store, high-quality food and drinks, all at a competitive price point. Menu offerings include: burgers, tacos, chicken wings, chicken tenders, salads, ice cream shakes, beer (draft, bottle, and local craft), and more.
Brooksy Smith, chief brand officer for Hurricane AMT (Hurricane Grill & Wings, Hurricane BTW and Hurricane Dockside) as well as President of Hurricane BTW, is charged with leading the growth and expansion of BTW. “Fast-casual is the way we will serve our food at Hurricane BTW, but with a broader menu and better value for our customers,” Smith says.
“While the restaurant industry, specifically fast casual, is down as of late, we have seen two trends: single entrée menus have driven brands (i.e. burgers, pizza, wings), and there is an overall drive for higher quality and higher average tickets,” says Smith. “At BTW, we are focusing on the three most popular single entrée items other than pizza and including them on our menu, and we are pricing our average ticket at $10. We feel that now is the right time for a broad menu with a value proposition in a casual market. And that’s why we are confident BTW will excel.”
The Hurricane BTW prototype will feature improved food, service and design elements from the restaurant’s lab location. Features include:
- Approximately 2,000 square feet
- Sophisticated and high-design esthetic in-store with inexpensive yet durable finishes
- New and improved burger, taco, chicken wing and tender recipes
- Ice Cream Shakes with mix-ins
- Expanded sauce bar
- Pepsi Spire digital fountain
- The Crowler: 32 oz sealable can meant for draft beer (in those locations where permitted)
“We’ve learned that our guests expect high quality food at a fair price,” Smith added. “And they want to be able customize everything to their individual needs. We’ve made that possible with every item on the Hurricane BTW menu, from the sauces to the soft drink machine to the ice cream shakes.”
Hurricane BTW is in the process of seeking out experience franchise owners. The estimated expenditures to build a BTW are $225,000—$464,000.