Weekly Dish: It's what Caniacs crave!

Raising Cane's

When Raising Cane’s founder and CEO Todd Graves came up with the idea to open a restaurant that sells only chicken tenders, people were less than supportive. College professors, as well as loan managers, weren’t sold on the idea and were skeptical of a business plan revolving around such a niche market. After several years of back-breaking work with jobs like being a boilermaker in a Louisiana refinery to working a 20-hour day as a commercial sockeye salmon fisherman, Graves finally saved up enough money to open his dream restaurant and show everybody who doubted him how wrong they were — and boy, were they ever. After opening the first Cane’s in 1997 in Baton Rouge, 50 other locations have popped up in 14 states, grossing over $100 million in sales in less than a decade. And a year ago, Beaumont got it’s very own free-standing chicken finger restaurant known as “The Full Beaumonty.”

 

What’s in a name?

The name of the restaurant was going to be “Sockeye’s Chicken Fingers” after the sockeye salmon Graves fished for in Alaska to raise money to start the restaurant. Luckily, a friend convinced him to name the first restaurant after his beloved dog, “Raising Cane.” Graves says during the renovation of the first restaurant, Raising Cane used to hang around the building site and was a friendly, yellow Lab who loved to be around people. Raising Cane I has since passed away; however, another puppy was delivered by Santa and named Cane II to continue the legacy as the pooch’s namesake. Cane II has become a very popular and well-known dog and stays busy with restaurant visits, community activities, and can often be seen wagging his tail at the Restaurant Support Office. As a certified pet therapy dog, Cane II also takes weekly to children’s hospitals.

 

Raising the bar in Beaumont

From the fresh-squeezed lemonade to the special homemade sauce, Raising Cane’s offers a more personal touch when compared to the fast food places many have become accustom to. When walking inside the restaurant on Dowlen across from Barnes and Nobel the delicious smell of savory spices and fried chicken take over your senses. The artwork on the wall includes different movie posters and hometown memorabilia. The place is causal enough to relax and have fun with family, or meet up for a spontaneous luncheon. Windows line the walls and give a perfect view to the hustle and bustle of Beaumont (especially this time of year).

 Rasing Cane’s is about more than just great tasting chicken tenders. The business believes in supporting the community and improving the lives and communities of the people who make the company the success that it is. Cane’s has sponsored several student-driven activities, as well as individual fundraisers for worthy causes.

 

The Menu

Three chicken finger combo, four chicken finger combo, six chicken finger combo and a chicken finger sandwich along with a side of fries, coleslaw and Texas toast are the options at this establishment. After all, Cane’s keeps it simple.

 

What We Ate

 

The Caniac Combo –We decided to go big or go home. Six crispy, hand battered chicken tenders in a basket with soft Texas toast, a handful of crinkle-cut fries, a scoop of coleslaw and a cup of the secret sauce. The chicken fingers were tender, thick and juicy. The batter had a great crunch and held up to double dipping in the sauce. Crinkle fries are a nice touch to the norm tender baskets around town, and the coleslaw was sweet- just the way we like it. The special, secret sauce tasted familiar to us, but of course nobody would spill the beans as to its ingredients. Even the toast was delicious.

 

The Sandwich – Three chicken fingers were piled on a bed of lettuce and secret sauce. The bun was picture perfect and was light and fluffy.

 

Fresh Squeezed Lemonade – Behind the counter was the biggest lemonade pitcher we had ever seen. Each day, employees squeeze lemons for the mouth-watering drink, and you can really taste the quality. Not overly sweet, but extremely refreshing. We recommend this over sweet tea any day!

 

Swing on by

Raising Cane’s is known as the brand for quality chicken finger meals, a great crew, cool culture, and active community involvement. When you’re out and about fighting the dreaded “Dowlen dash” for the perfect gift, stop by Raising Cane’s and relax a bit. The food is fresh, and the service is friendly. Plus, there is also a Raising Cane’s at the food court in Parkdale Mall.

 

We like to know where you like to go! Email suggestions for next week’s adventure to Weeklydish [at] theexaminer [dot] com.

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