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Celebrity favorite Dave’s Hot Chicken to open Tysons restaurant next week

The fastest growing restaurant in the U.S. will open its doors in Tysons next week.

Dave’s Hot Chicken, a California-based chain that counts celebrities like rapper Drake and actor Samuel L. Jackson among its investors, will hold a grand opening for its new location at 8397 Leesburg Pike in Pike 7 Plaza on Friday, Aug. 25, according to its website.

This will be the company’s first Virginia location but far from its last. About 19 franchises are planned in Northern Virginia alone, the Tysons manager told FFXnow.

“This is a great area,” he said.

Adjacent to China Wok at the northern end of the shopping center, the 2,445-square-foot restaurant will be open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Sunday through Thursday and 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.

Started as a food stand in a Los Angeles parking lot in 2017, Dave’s Hot Chicken has expanded rapidly over the past few years to more than 118 locations — with another 700 in development, Restaurant Dive reported in March.

The company attributed its success so far to positive buzz and careful recruiting of experienced franchisees both for its leadership team and as operators.

Specializing in Nashville-style hot chicken, the restaurant’s menu consists of chicken tenders, sliders and fries served in different pairings with pickles, the signature “Dave’s sauce,” and sides, including kale slaw and mac and cheese.

There are seven spice levels ranging from no spice to “Reaper,” which reportedly uses the hottest pepper in the world and requires customers to sign a waiver.

The Tysons location won’t be open for long before facing some competition on the spiciness front: Richmond-based Hangry Joe’s Hot Chicken, which has a similar waiver requirement for its top heat level, is working on a restaurant at Tysons Square (8359-A Leesburg Pike).

After debuting an Annandale location this past Tuesday (Aug. 15), Hangry Joe’s anticipates opening in Tysons in two to three weeks, the company told FFXnow.

Meanwhile, Dave’s Hot Chicken hasn’t publicly announced any additional Virginia franchises yet, but Franconia appears to be on the list. The business has applied for a commercial alteration permit from Fairfax County for 7015E Manchester Blvd in the Festival at Manchester Lakes shopping center.