Monday, February 12, 2024

[EXCLUSIVE] Popular Peri-Peri Chicken Chain to Make Metro Atlanta Debut

The wait is almost over!  Metro Atlanta is set to get its first Nando's PERi PERi!  After launching in the U.S. in 2008, Nando's will open their first Atlanta area location at the new High Street project in Dunwoody.  The new restaurant is one of several planned for metro area in the years to come.

Nando’s Restaurant Group Inc., the Washington D.C.-based division of the South African flame-grilled peri-peri chicken concept, today includes 45 restaurants across D.C., Virginia, Illinois, Maryland, Texas, and Illinois.  This past December the company opened its first restaurant in Dallas (Addison), last week opened in the Houston suburb of Katy, and will soon open in Austin.    

The company has in recent days established an Atlanta "teaser" page that says "Atlanta, we hear you love spice."  The page provides no location or opening information but invites would-be guests to sign up for "opening updates, behind the scenes content, spicy parties, and more for our new location in Atlanta."  

Nando’s was founded in Johannesburg, South Africa, in 1987.  The chain's first American unit debuted in Washington D.C. in 2008. Today Nando's operates more than 1,200 restaurants across 30 countries.

The central ingredient in many of the restaurant's sauces is the Peri Peri chili, also known as the African bird's eye chili. The sauces are typically a blend of this chili with ingredients like garlic, lemon, oil, and various herbs.  

Peri Peri was also the central flavor at Atlanta-based Boneheads, a failed franchise brand from the creators of Moe's Southwest Grill.  The last remaining Boneheads closed in Ashford Lane (then Perimeter Place) in late 2018.  

The Nando's menu features a rather diverse selection with offerings that include sandwiches, skewers, platters, bowls, salads, wings, wraps, pitas, and more.    A veggie burger is also offered as are other vegetarian-friendly options such as roasted brussels sprouts, PERi honey sweet potatoes, and PERi Mac, among other choices.   The restaurant's website suggests that entree prices start at about ten bucks with some offerings - such as the 12 wing with two sides platter - costing as much as $22.19.  

Nando's has an impressive 4.6 million "followers" on Facebook, more than fellow quick-serve operators Chipotle (3.2 million), Cava (66,000) Shake Shack (459,000) El Pollo Loco (446,000), and Schlotzsky's (143,000), combined! 

Similar to Cava which had a presence in metro Atlanta grocery stores before launching their restaurants locally in 2021, Nando's, too, has a consumer packaged goods (CPG) presence in local Publix and Walmart stores with their sauces, spreads, and dressings.  

The company has in recent days posted job listings [on LinkedIn] seeking a General Manager, Assistant General Manager, and Restaurant Manager for an upcoming "Atlanta" location.  

At High Street, Nando's will join several other previously announced tenants including Puttshack, The Hampton Social, Velvet Taco, Cuddlefish, Agave Bandido, and Ben & Jerry's, among others.  

Have you ever tried Nando's?  Where else in metro Atlanta would you like to see Nando's open?  What upcoming opening at High Street are you most excited about?

Please share your thoughts below. 


Hamburguesa said...

Had Nando's when traveling with the fam to Chicago for spring break, and we ended up going back again before we left. It's just really tasty flame-grilled chicken, and easy to make a healthy meal for yourself. Lots of veggie sides including roasted sweet chili cauliflower, roasted Brussels, and charred sweet potatoes. Can't wait.

Anonymous said...

I've had Nando's in London and Toronto. Very excited to see them coming here.

Anonymous said...

As a South African living in Atlanta know how good Nandos is. can’t wait for opening

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing your experiences. Sounds like a great concept that is definitely with great differentiation versus what’s available today in the marketplace, and it sounds very tasty!

Anonymous said...

Best news ever

Anonymous said...

Love Nando's. Had it first in London. Then in DC. Can't wait to hear about their opening in Atlanta.

Anonymous said...

Very, very excited about this. Am in London several times a year & always hit up a cheeky Nando's while I'm there. Having two coming & one opening this year for sure is great news!

Anonymous said...

Had Nandos numerous times in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Tasty chicken. I especially loved their rotisserie chicken!

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