Openings and Closings

Hot Chicks and Texas Republic Bar Opens Near SMU Monday

More hot chicken has arrived.
More hot chicken has arrived. Lauren Drewes Daniels
Another hot chicken sandwich spot is entering the competitive spicy bird market. Hot Chicks Chicken is a locally born concept that started in Plano and has another store at Willow Park in Weatherford. This third installment is at 5609 SMU Blvd, which was previously a Twisted Root.

The restaurant is connected to Texas Republic Bar, which has a highly popular location in Fort Worth in the West 7th area. These two spaces are distinct but connected in that you can order hot chicken while lounging at the bar.

Dylan Lotz with Hot Chicks says everything is made fresh in-house including the spices, coleslaw, fries and pickles. Halal chicken is dry brined for 48 hours before being dipped in peppery oil, dredged and fried up. There are four levels of heat the chicken tenders are rolled in after cooked: mild, medium, hot and hot AF, which has ghost and habanero powder along with Carolina reaper. Chicken can also be ordered without any heat. Lotz says there’s a big jump from medium to hot. We tried the mild and it was tasty with a strong flavor and nice bite but no face sweat.

The menu is pretty simple, offering six ways to take your tenders; just three jumbo tenders ($9.50), a sandwich ($11), tacos ($11), rice bowl ($11), loaded fries ($11) or a big salad ($10). They also have grilled chicken and a handful of sides like fries, coleslaw, rice and mac and cheese.
click to enlarge Loaded hot chicken fries with slaw and pickles. - LAUREN DREWES DANIELS
Loaded hot chicken fries with slaw and pickles.
Lauren Drewes Daniels

Frozen boozy drinks come in little plastic hot pink containers that resemble fire extinguishers. Lot z says that at the Weatherford location, their Mambo Margarita is one of their biggest sellers, often sold in half-gallon containers. It's a margarita with a splash of sangria. The Big Red is a slushie made with coconut rum, "magic potion" and Big Red soda. The Red Margarita is the twist of their margarita and Big Red.


Hot Chicks will also have a space for takeout and delivery, which Lotz says has been a thriving part of their other two locations. There are tables out front on the patio and a few inside. It’s a fast-casual setup.

Be on the lookout for an announcement for a hot chicken eating contest for which the grand prize is a year of free chicken. Contestants have to eat three of their Hot AF strips in 15 minutes then have nothing to drink for 15 minutes.

As for the bar portion, Texas Republic Bar and Kitchen in Fort Worth is sort of known for their trashcan nachos. These are nachos that are built in a small trash can, then dumped on your table in a dramatic display. (Also because we should just eat out of pail sometimes.) On a trip there Thursday, they said they’re working on a unique hot chicken version of this item.

The bar is flanked by a huge patio out front with couches and tables to kick back at, a perfect environment to soak up sports and booze. Inside there is a 136-foot LED display — a small movie screen — so you can watch all of the game.

click to enlarge The turfed patio at Texas Republic. - LAUREN DREWES DANIELS
The turfed patio at Texas Republic.
Lauren Drewes Daniels
Neither spot has hours listed yet. Check their website for more information on that. 
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Lauren Drewes Daniels is the Dallas Observer's food editor. She started writing about local restaurants, chefs, beer and kouign-amanns in 2011. She's driven through two dirt devils and is certain they were both some type of cosmic force.