Buffalo Wings & Rings Hires New Corporate Chef
Buffalo Wings & Rings, the Cincinnati-based elevated sports restaurant franchise with more than 80 locations across the globe, recently brought on restaurant and franchise industry veteran Dan Admire as Corporate Chef. Admire will lead efforts to further build and develop a menu with a focus on crave-worthy, high-quality options in line with the brand’s commitment to providing a club level experience that can be replicated across franchise and corporate-owned restaurants.
“I’ve been cooking in kitchens my entire life with the exception of a three month stint in the late 70’s when I went to work on a shrimp boat in Corpus Christi, only to be interrupted by Hurricane Anita,” says Admire. “I’ve had the pleasure of working under and with a ton of great people in my career and I see incredible opportunity to apply the knowledge I’ve garnered in my career to further innovate and elevate the Buffalo Wings & Rings menu.”
After returning from that short shrimp boat endeavor, Admire rose quickly in the restaurant industry. Admire became executive chef at Fedora Café in Kansas City which was ranked in the top ten by USA Today. There, he earned recognition and acclaim for his cutting edge approach and incorporation of ingredients that he imported from overseas. After Fedora Café, Admire moved into the hotel segment as an executive chef with Marriott, followed by a stint as corporate executive chef at John Q. Hammons Hotels and Resorts and then spent 14 years at Houlihan’s Restaurants, Inc. where he became vice president of culinary and oversaw menu development for Houlihan’s, J. Gilbert’s Wood-Fired Steaks and Devon Seafood Grill. Most recently, Admire became a partner in fine dining seafood restaurant Brendon's Catch 23 in Louisville, Kentucky, before joining Buffalo Wings & Rings at the beginning of 2019.
“People ask how I went from fine dining to Buffalo Wings & Rings and when you're in fine dining, you appreciate what you're doing and the craft but it's not necessarily what you crave,” says Admire. “You see this a lot with chefs who make a name for themselves in fine dining—they end up opening places with food that they crave. Buffalo Wings & Rings is all the food that I love. It's flavor-forward and chef-driven. It’s a really great group of people who run the company too. It’s a really collaborative environment and it feels like a family.”
Since new ownership took over Buffalo Wings & Rings in 2005, the company has been focused on providing a club level, VIP experience for guests which includes an elevated menu not found at typical sports bars. The addition of Admire, and his more than four decades of experience, furthers that commitment from the brand.
“Dan has an incredible resume and has done amazing things within the restaurant industry, but he also has extensive background in cultivating menus for franchise brands which is extremely important to us at Buffalo Wings & Rings,” says Nader Masadeh, CEO of Buffalo Wings & Rings. “Providing support to our franchisees is paramount in our brand’s philosophy and Dan will help create not only an elevated, delicious menu with options for the whole family but will do so in a way that the experience will be excellent whether you’re at one of our locations in Florida, Ohio, North Dakota or anywhere else in the U.S.”
Admire hit the ground running at Buffalo Wings & Rings in just his first few months on the job, focusing early attention towards research and development aimed at elevating all aspects of the menu and to expand on the brand’s established offerings.
“I think that food is moving faster right now than it ever has before. Social media has played the largest role in that. As we look at that and we look at our customer and demand, there is a lot of room for international flavors to be introduced into a lot of different categories. There are things that you might only taste in upscale dining that can be brought into the Buffalo Wings & Rings kitchen,” says Admire. “But since we are a growing franchise, I'm thinking of everything in terms of line level execution. The recipes I create will need to be executed by someone thousands of miles away that I've never met before. So, they have to be easily executed. The greatest recipes aren't great if you can't execute them easily elsewhere.”