Dave's Hot Chicken

Popular U.S. hot chicken chain launches its first Toronto location

Dave's Hot Chicken's Parkdale location is the first of 30 planned Canadian outposts

Dave’s Hot Chicken has officially arrived in Toronto to warm up our winter with its spicy Nashville chicken. The new Parkdale outpost, which takes over the former home of Pete’s Corner Grill, is the L.A. fast-casual concept’s first location outside of California.

Blair Bitove, director of business development, first discovered Dave’s Hot Chicken while studying in Los Angeles. She worked with her father, John Bitove, founder of the NBA’s Toronto Raptors, to bring the popular franchise to Canada.

“I think what sets us apart is we use the tender meat from the chicken, which is the best part of the chicken,” says Blair. “Our flavouring is very different from what people are used to. It’s a mix between a dry rub and a sauce.”

 

 

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Dave Hot Chicken’s simple menu features chicken tenders and sliders, which come in seven heat levels ranging from “no spice” to “reaper.” Sides include crinkle fries, cheese fries, kale slaw, and mac ‘n’ cheese. Blair says the restaurant will soon also launch a secret menu with only-in-Canada items, such as chicken poutine. A craft beer lineup focused on neighbourhood brewers is also in the works.

The Bitoves have plans to open more than 30 Canadian Dave’s Hot Chicken outposts over the next year. Blair says the next two locations, found just south of Yonge and Eglinton and in the Leslieville area, will hopefully open their doors before the summer. Each location will also feature a mural by a Toronto artist that pays homage to its unique surrounding neighbourhood.

Dave’s Hot Chicken’s Parkdale location is currently open for takeout and delivery. A dine-in area will launch when lockdown restrictions are lifted.

Article exclusive to TRNTO