INDIANAPOLIS — Known for their Buffalo-style chicken wings, East Coast-based Atomic Wings is planning to expand into the Indianapolis area with multiple stores offering a fast-casual restaurant experience.
Greenfield native and restauranteur Mike Harmon, who owns eight Firehouse Subs franchises in Indiana, is planning to bring the first Atomic Wings to the state in a yet-to-be-determined location in the Indianapolis area after purchasing a 10-unit development deal with the East Coast-based wing chain.
Harmon told IBJ he’s still in the site-selection process of the first of the planned Atomic Wings around Indianapolis but hopes to open the first restaurant in the second or third quarter of 2023. Harmon said he’s considering a standalone or end-cap space in a retail center because he plans on the first Atomic Wings location he opens to have a drive-thru and serve as a model for other potential franchisees.
Harmon told IBJ that as many as nine more Atomic Wings franchises could sprout up in the Indy area over the next several years.
Atomic Wings first opened in 1989 in New York City offering hot, crispy Buffalo-style chicken wings. Since 2016, under new ownership, Atomic Wings has focused on national growth with 15 locations primarily on the East Coast. Atomic Wings already has expansions besides Indiana on the horizon, however, with deals signed to open Atomic Wings restaurants in California, Nevada, Arizona, Texas and West Virginia.
Atomic Wings offers both bone-in and boneless wings made from antibiotic and hormone free, all-natural chicken with over 14 sauce choices. Outside of wings, Atomic Wings’s menu features sandwiches, salads, waffle fries, hamburgers, tater tots, onion rings, jalapeno poppers, chicken and waffles, and more.
The chicken chain was featured on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallen where Priyanka Chopra and Fallon held a contest to see who could eat the most nuclear sauce-covered Atomic Wings in 20 seconds.
Despite a crowded chicken wing market, Harmon believes Indiana could hold up to 30 locations and bring dozens of jobs to Hoosiers. Harmon said he expects Atomic Wings to thrive due to the quality of its wings and a special preparation process that allows the restaurant to serve freshly cooked wings much faster than its competitors.