Zaxby’s: Real Chicken
February 11, 2023
At Zaxby’s we’re all about family and bringing people together.
Zach McLeroy of Statesboro, Georgia, was an aspiring drummer. That is, he was an aspiring drummer until one day, while playing basketball, he and his friend, Tony Townley, came up with an idea to open a restaurant that specialized in chicken. In fact, Zach sold off his drum kit and, together in 1990, he and Tony pulled together $16,000 to open the first Zaxby’s location in Statesboro, Georgia, near the Southern University campus.
The boys had a simple goal: to serve only the highest quality food in a fun environment. Their concept was successful and, in 1994, they offered the brand for franchise.
They set up their headquarters in Athens, GA, and soon built a franchisee community of entrepreneurs and, the Zaxby’s chain was born.
The company’s first restaurant outside of Georgia was opened in September 1994 in Bowling Green, Kentucky.
What’s so special about Zaxby’s?
Right from Day One, Zaxby’s has offered customers scrumptious hand-breaded chicken, not cooked until it’s ordered. And, second, in two words: Zax Sauce.
Zach wanted to keep his sauce recipe a secret and so, for many years, he made the sauce himself and distributed it to various locations. Eventually, to keep up with the growing number of Zaxby’s restaurants, he had it manufactured, but even then, the recipe was kept strictly secret. So much so that not even the Executive Chef knows exactly how it’s made. All we know is that the customers absolutely love it!
The Zaxby’s Menu
Zaxby’s casual dining restaurant offers a relaxing place to enjoy a mouth-watering meal. The prepared-at-order menu includes chicken fingers, chicken wings, sandwiches, salads, and appetizers. Diners who order chicken fingers can choose from an exciting range of dipping sauces, from mild to the moderate Zax sauce to the outrageously hot Nuclear. If you’re looking for more variety, you can always try Wimpy, Tongue Torch and Insane.
Dining rooms at Zaxby’s restaurants are fun and unique. Some locations in college towns, for example, display decorations related to the local university. In Orlando, Florida, the walls are graced with bright and cheerful citrus-themed decorations.
Since 2007, Zaxby’s has used an advertising campaign that has featured celebrities, such as Wayne Brady, Lee Ann Womack and Little Richard, to name just a few.
In 2022, Zaxby’s introduced a new CEO, Bernard Acoca, the first CEO that was not one of the co-founders. Outgoing CEO Zach McLeroy stayed on as Chairman