Slim Chickens, a leader in the “better chicken” segment of fast-casual restaurants, will continue expansion of its 100 percent all-natural, fresh chicken and unrivaled flavor, bringing its first location to Florida on June 25 at 300 West 23rd Street in Panama City.
After cutting his teeth within Sonic’s franchise system—first as a carhop, then a line cook, then as an assistant manager, then as District Supervisor for six locations—Chris McMillan has taken his restaurant experience to the next level. When he asked fellow Sonic franchisees about other opportunities in the quick-service world, the name that came up again and again was Slim Chickens. In spring 2018, McMillan decided to take the plunge and signed a 12-unit contract with the flavorful fried chicken brand in the Florida Panhandle, the first of which will open this month in Panama City.
“As an Arkansas native, where Slim Chickens was founded, I have been a fan of the brand for years. I wanted to venture out from Sonic and I knew some other Sonic franchisees who had gotten involved with Slim’s,” says McMillan. “Since moving to the Panhandle last August, I’ve noticed it is just big enough that there is a variety of things to do, but just small enough that everyone knows everyone. Slim Chickens has that feel—that everyone knows everyone, that local vibe—it will fit in perfectly here.”
Aside from bringing its famous, delicious fried chicken and Southern-inspired sides to the area, the new Slim Chickens location in Panama City will also make a positive economic impact in the community by creating over 75 new jobs.
The Panama City opening is just one part of Slim Chickens’ larger growth story. Since its founding in 2003, the brand has celebrated over 100 openings, with an overall goal of opening 600 restaurants by 2025. In Arkansas alone, the brand has already grown tremendously to 19 locations.
“Our freshly made southern dishes and homemade recipes create loyal guests who feel good about the food they’re eating, and we’re proud to be able to grow our loyal fan base into the Panama City market,” adds Slim Chickens Chief Operating Officer Sam Rothschild.
By focusing on providing only 100% fresh, all-natural chicken tenders that are buttermilk-marinated, hand-breaded and always cooked fresh-to-order, the brand has committed to providing a “better chicken” experience that can’t be found anywhere else. In addition, a choice of 17 housemade sauces adds exceptional flavor and has earned admiration from both guests and industry experts alike. Slim Chickens also offers fresh sandwiches, salads, wraps and its signature chicken and waffles. To complement the savory side of the menu, rotating desserts served in Mason jars are also available.