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This Struggling Burger-Sports Bar Chain Is Making a Huge Comeback

This chain was down but not out.

During the pandemic, most restaurants had a tough time keeping their heads above water. In particular, sports bars had it hard. Not only did lockdown protocols wipe out dining rooms, but the sports gameswhich were their main traffic driversuddenly stopped as well. 

But this burger-sports chain is seeing a big comeback from the dark days of the pandemic with both tremendous sales and store growth.

Casual sports bar brand Beef 'O' Brady's saw sales plummet over 40% from 2021 to 2019, according to Technomic's Top 500 Chain Restaurant Report. Just last quarter, however, the company was able to right the course so much that it reported record-breaking sales.

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Beef 'O' Brady's same-store sales rose about 13% in the first quarter of 2022 over the same time last year, boosting it to a record-breaking $1.5 million in average sales for all its stores, according to FSR Magazine. The company also has big plans for expansion, with six stores slated for this year and another 15 locations scheduled in the future. 

Positive sales numbers combined with growth have also intrigued investors who've secured franchise deals for 15 more locations, with six of them slated to open by the end of the year.  Outside of sports returning to the big screen to bring in customers, Beef 'O' Brady's is doing some leg work to keep them. One of those initiatives includes a new and improved menu.

The new menu rolls out on June 27 and will feature both new and upgraded products, including enhanced nachos and tacos, chopped steak and gravy, cheeseburger fries, buffalo ranch fries, an open-faced steak, and gravy sandwich, and it will be reintroducing of an old favorite, the Dubliner. The chain will also be working on debuting catering options, according to FSR

Currently, Beef 'O' Brady's is at 133 locations, although at its peak it had 270. The casual sports and Irish-themed restaurant first opened in 1985 in Brandon, Fla. It is headquartered in Tampa, Fla., and is known for its award-winning chicken wings, which are available in 12 signature sauces.

Amber Lake
Amber Lake is a staff writer at Eat This, Not That! and has a degree in journalism from UNF in Jacksonville, Florida. Read more