Twin Peaks' Sales Increased In Florida Despite Hurricane Ian

When your television flashes with weather alerts or scenes from a natural disaster in your area, the first thing that comes to mind probably isn't "I should go to a restaurant tonight." But, for a Twin Peaks location in Florida, Hurricane Ian hasn't halted sales – in fact, business has been up lately. On September 29, WPTV reported that Category 4 Hurricane Ian was causing waves as tall as 12 feet. Per The New York Times, houses were swept away, cars were drowned, and the general fallout was gnarly, to say the least. As of three days ago, due to the hurricane, there were still three missing persons in Fort Myers, says People magazine. But, per Restaurant Business, Twin Peaks' highest-performing location right now is in Fort Myers, Florida somehow.

The fast-casual dining chain came under new ownership last year after being bought by Fat Brands for a reported $300 million. As of right now, Fat Brands owns 17 restaurant brands, including Johnny Rocket's, Fazoli's, Round Table Pizza, and more, with Twin Peaks leading the pack in sales. This year, Twin Peaks demonstrated 13% growth in same-store sales, compared to the 7% other Fat Brands stores are exhibiting. It $400 million in sales last year, marking a three-year growth of 22%. (And that period includes the coronavirus pandemic, too.) So, what's the secret to its success? And how can the Fort Myers restaurant seemingly flourish in the aftermath of a hurricane?

A sense of normalcy

Perhaps the first and most obvious reason for the restaurant's recent success is logistics. Luckily for Twin Peaks, Hurricane Ian only took a few shingles off the roof, per Restaurant Business. The second reason, however, is that Twin Peaks is serving hurricane relief workers and neighborhood residents in a time of huge distress. According to Fat Brands CEO Andy Wiederhorn, the sense of normalcy Twin Peaks offers is what's keeping Florida sales so high. 'Tis the season for sports bars, says Wiederhorn, and what better time to catch the game and have a massive pint of 29-degree beer than when so many other constants are suddenly unsure?

This shift might seem a little surprising given the chain's reputation. The truth about Twin Peaks restaurant is that it's a "breastaurant." (Think Hooters, but with a more rustic vibe. Twin Peaks' slogan is literally, "Experience the Lodge MANtality," so.) In 2014, Bloomberg reported that Twin Peaks was the country's "fastest-growing restaurant chain." In the same article, Twin Peaks co-founder Randy DeWitt revealed his inspiration for the concept: "Hooters just wasn't racy enough." DeWitt cited children coloring at the tables in Hooters as an unattractive fixture for "attentive service" restaurants. But, judging by the community-centered attitude the chain seems to be adopting, along with the new ownership, it looks like Twin Peaks could be becoming more accessible as it moves forward and continues serving the Florida community.