Buffalo Wild Wings

The Evolution of a Sports Bar

Transparent Triangle
Transparent Triangle

Background

Looking to keep their restaurant appearance fresh, Buffalo Wild Wings began a complete redesign of their interior in 2011. While they wanted their customers to experience the energy of being at a sporting event, they saw more families visiting their restaurants and didn’t want to be thought of as a sports bar. Having worked with BWW for a number of years, we were brought in to make their new design concept possible.

 

Challenges

Design matters, but functionality is essential. The primary challenge was to provide a furniture option that met the design intent while being mindful of the financial impact. After gaining a thorough understanding of their design, we reviewed their budget targets to identify areas for improvement. Our initial design review with the BWW team presented an opportunity to suggest ways to increase durability, lower price and enhance product design.

 

How Plymold Helped

The BWW Design Team had a vision for a custom table complete with brand graphics printed directly onto the table top. Our Supply Chain Team reached out to our network of reliable vendors and was able to source a digitally printed, custom laminate capable of withstanding abuse. The final product has become an important part of the branding in all BWW stores.

 

A black metal table edge raised 1/8” over the table surface was specified in the original design. Taking into account our knowledge of BWW’s standard practice of putting chairs and stools on top of the tables each night for easier cleaning, we raised the concern that the edge would not withstand the abuse and would damage the chairs. It also presented a safety concern with potentially sharp metal edges and corners. We suggested our exclusive Dur-A-Edge® table top as an alternative. It provided the look of the black edge while being extremely resilient at a lower price point.

 

We build furniture every day and applied our knowledge to help reduce the booth costs. BWW originally conceived their booths on a non-standard base. After discussing their needs, we altered our standard booth base slightly to allow for more efficient manufacturing while meeting their design needs. We were also able to recommend an alternate upholstery vinyl that was durable and more cost effective than the specified option. The final product resulted in significant savings without compromising their design.

This project also required four fully custom products: a rectangular tube metal barstool, a locker style waiting bench, a “concrete” booth divider, and a matching chair and barstool with a “zebra wood” seat/back. All were engineered and brought to life by our Engineering and Supply Chain Teams. These items are all an integral part of the Stadia furniture package.

 

inside-wings

 

The Results

The roll-out of the new furniture package has been a success. To ensure smooth openings, we worked with BWW to establish a coordinated process to ensure the right products are shipped to the right locations at the right times. They had an aggressive new store/remodel plan and discussing this in advance allowed us to maximize our capacity and scheduling to ensure their orders always ship on-time.

 

Since launching this project we’ve embraced store feedback to continue to enhance our products. We developed a new product that mimics the concrete booth dividers that is durable, lightweight, and easy to work with. The “zebra wood” chair has evolved to a metal frame that is robust enough to withstand the demands of even the busiest store.

 

This project presented some challenges that we worked closely to BWW to determine the optimal solution that would allow their transition to a restaurant where you can watch the big game and take your family. Their continued growth speaks for itself.