Jaggers Wants You to Have It All
Texas Roadhouse brings their newest brand to Louisville on Dec. 9th.
The Jaggers brand is the only chain I’ll ever describe as being near and dear to my heart. I first did work for the brand as an intern at Doe-Anderson and later as a consultant for Texas Roadhouse directly.
A lot of my ideas were spokesperson-based and involved media buys. Both of which the company steers away from in general. Even my least fantastical suggestion—producing videos of the food being prepared in house—proved to be too uncharacteristic for the company. A few months later, Chipotle launched a tv campaign that did just that. They saved themselves from looking like copycats.
In retrospect, it’s clear that my time in the kitchen was to blame for my tendency toward absurdity. A trio of competitive chefs-turned-spokespeople? A logophilic Rod Serling impression? What did I expect a corporation to say?
My one success with the brand was helping develop the Next Jaggers competition. We asked guests to suggest the site for the third location. It should come as no surprise that Louisville was the most popular suggestion; not when Roadhouse HQ employees got in on the voting, at least.
Two years later, I no longer have to crave their milkshakes and strawberry lemonade from a distance.
Below is a business spotlight I wrote for Jaggers. As far as PR writing goes, it was the easiest piece I’ve ever done.
When we arrive at the Greenwood Jaggers, it’s just before 10:00 a.m. The General Manager, Troy, is zipping about the kitchen, preparing a large catering order for a nearby dealership. The order is pretty straightforward—"just 200 chicken tenders,” Troy tells us—but he’s trying to ensure the order goes out with plenty of sauces.
Tending to the catering order is a two-person project, easy. But with more than an hour left before service starts, most of the restaurant’s lunch crew is already here. They’re preparing their stations for the lunch rush: replenishing the stock of dressings and sauces; chopping produce; or tidying up the dining room. Most surprising was the employee we noticed disappearing into the walk-in.
“He’s just going into our meat room,” Troy explains as he ushers us to the cooler. Inside, we see that the inventory is divided between two separate compartments. The first is reserved for produce, sauces, and dressings; the second is reserved for the storage and preparation of raw meats.
It’s a step above what’s required by the health department, but the company believes that the peace of mind is worth it. More importantly, Troy points out, the meat room allows Jaggers to control portions by starting with full chicken breasts rather than buying the tenders pre-portioned.
While most recent fast casuals have a singular specialty with other items seemingly tagging along for the sake of variety, Jaggers chose to produce three staples of equal quality. As the lunch hours roll around and people stroll in, we’re surprised by how balanced the orders are. Specifically, we’re surprised to see a salad at almost every table.
“They’re just so filling,” one customer reports. She’s dining with her daughter and granddaughter (eating a chicken sandwich and salad, respectively), who all consider themselves regulars. The salads’ popularity can be attributed to their treatment as an entrée rather than a large side. All four signature salads come with a portion of protein and an array of toppings, easily filling their bowls. For those who want their meals to feature their protein choices more prominently, there’s an even greater range of choices: eight burgers, six chicken sandwiches, and chicken tenders.
When we ask Troy how this location compares to the Noblesville location, he gives us another glimpse into Jaggers’ company culture, joking, “I like to tell [the General Manager at Noblesville] that they’re Jaggers number one, but we’re the number one Jaggers.”
This sense of sibling rivalry seems to be an important part of Jaggers’ identity. Rather than focus on what other brands do or how to keep up with industry trends, Jaggers seems most concerned with fulfilling its own, higher standard of operation.
The success of this approach is apparent. The drive-thru runs mechanically, the wait times are minimal, and customers are smitten. Ourselves included.