wingstop toronto

American restaurant chain Wingstop is opening its first Canadian location in Toronto

A popular U.S. chain best known for fuelling Rick Ross' obsession with lemon pepper chicken wings is officially expanding into Canada next year, starting with the country's first ever Wingstop location in Toronto.

Wingstop, which already boasts more than 1,500 locations worldwide, announced on Tuesday that it is planning to open more than 100 restaurants across Canada over the next 10 years in partnership with JPK Capital.

"Wingstop targeted Canada for its global expansion because of Canada's proximity to the brand's home market in the U.S. as well as similarities in consumer behaviors regarding digital engagement and off-premise dining," reads a release announcing the news. 

"The 100-location agreement starts in Ontario, with the Toronto location anticipated to open in 2022 pending any unexpected or additional Canadian border regulations and closures stemming from COVID-19."

Founded as a small buffalo-style chicken wing restaurant in Garland, Texas, Wingstop has grown explosively since its inception in 1994 to become one of the fastest growing brands in the restaurant industry (or so says Wingstop.)

In 2020 alone, the company experienced a 28.8 per cent year-over-year system wide sales increase, pulling in around $2 billion total and positioning itself for a more-aggressive global expansion plan.

Billing themselves as "The Wing Experts," the Wingstop team credits  their success to "an unparalleled guest experience and offering of classic wings, boneless wings and tenders, always cooked to order and hand-sauced-and-tossed in fans' choice of 11 bold, distinctive flavours."

People seem to love their product, sure, but the fact that superstar recording artist Rick Ross owns at least 25 franchise locations (of which he raps about regularly) has surely helped boost Wingstop's visibility and appeal over the years.

Rozay may not be able to eat like he used to after a health scare that prompted him to lose more than 100 pounds, but we all know the man still appreciates food — especially lemon pepper wings.

Lead photo by

Wikimedia Commons/Leahdi

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