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Gastropub Wannabe TGI Friday’s is Putting Buffalo Wings on Top of Burgers

Because of course they are because that makes sense.

While “causal dining” pioneers TGI Friday’s struggles to find footing in today’s creative restaurant scene, the chain’s proposed solution isn’t to become a better causal dining restaurant; it’s to abandon the category altogether. Via Business Insider:

“We want to withdraw from the casual dining category,” TGI Fridays CEO John Antioco told Business Insider. “When you look at the alternatives out there in the marketplace today and who’s creating buzz and creating excitement, it’s gone away from chain casual dining and gone into gastropubs.”

Rather than focusing on higher quality food, the chain instead is pushing forth an effort to re-categorize themselves in the minds of consumers, thanks to the permanent rollout of their successful “$10 Endless Apps” promotion, featuring endless orders of classic appetizers such as mozzarella sticks and buffalo wings, or new apps, like fried pickles and meatballs.

The burger is topped off with a skewer of Buffalo wings, because of course it is.

The company is also rolling out a few new interesting burgers, under their new “Burger Bar” designation. The new burger options include seven premium, all-natural burgers with Fridays’ custom blend of chuck and brisket, served on a buttery golden challah bun.

The standout here is the “Buffalo Wingman Burger,” which features a blackened beef patty, Buffalo pimento cheese spread, spicy mayo with Tabasco Chipotle Pepper Sauce, spicy pickles, lettuce, tomatoes, and red onions. And if that’s not enough to convince you that you’re now dining in a fancy, trendy gastropub, maybe this will: The burger is topped off with a skewer of Buffalo wings, because of course it is.

New burger offerings also include “The Bacon CheesesBurger,” a kind of reimagining of the chain’s original bacon cheeseburger, this time with additional cheddar cheese spread teaming up with white cheddar, lettuce, tomatoes, red onion, pickles, bacon, and Friday’s sauce.

Finally, the new “BBQn Burger” features both classic Memphis-style and new white barbeque sauces, pepperjack cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, red onion, bacon, and crispy onion straws.

The new “Burger Bar” menu is available now at all participating TGI Friday’s locations, across the United States. Just remember, you aren’t going to a mid-range casual dining restaurant, YOU’RE GOING TO A HIP NEW GASTROPUB OKAY THANKS.

Written by Malcolm Bedell

Malcolm is the author of “Eating in Maine: At Home, On the Town, and On the Road,” as well as a frequent contributor to Serious Eats, Down East Magazine, The L.A. Weekly, The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and more. When not poisoning his body with garbage and then posting sardonic commentary about it on the Internet, he also owns and operates the ‘Wich, Please food truck, named Eater.com’s “Hottest Restaurant in Maine” for 2015.

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