Hooters, a restaurant/bar franchise more famous for its mandatory uniforms than its food, has announced plans to open a dressed-up version of itself: a fast-casual version of the restaurant, called Hoots.


In an effort to compete with less formal wing joints, Hoots will offer a more limited menu of some of the chain’s most popular items, like chicken wings, fries and crab legs, served at a counter by both male and female staff.


Customers will have the option to take their food to go or relax in one of the 75 seats expected at the inaugural location in Cicero, Illinois. This initial spot will also feature a 12-seat full-service bar for those that want to enjoy a cold one with their wings.

“It’s sort of a flex model,” said Neil Keifer, CEO of HMC, owner of 25 Hooters franchises, according to Nation’s Restaurant News. “But it’ll be predominantly fast casual. We’re anxious to see how that works.” Hooters of America CEO Terry Marks was quoted as saying. “It’s a logical extension of the brand and will provide more people with more opportunities to enjoy our world famous wings.” If the first Hoots goes over well, more could open in the future.

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