It started as a burger and beer place in Alberta, Canada. A restaurant made by a family, for families. A place made for people to celebrate or just come in for a nice meal. Earl’s Kitchen & Bar, they imagined. The place with birds and pigs as mascots. The place with a father and son greeting every customer.
The company eventually sprawled to 67 locations across Canada and the U.S. A team from the head office travels to different cultures to find more food, curating a globally-inspired menu.
“We have everything,” says Regional Director of Operations Chelsea Burns. “We pride ourselves in being able to bring a big group of people here so you can come to watch the game or come in to celebrate. We wanted a variety that would allow everyone to find something.”
When they say they have everything, Earl’s means it. Asian cuisine-inspired bowls. Pizza. Pasta. Salads. Soups. Plant-based concoctions. Steak. Earl’s amalgamation of cuisine also extends to beverages like the Miami Vice, Tokyo Cosmo, Yuzu Colada or Iced Irish Coffee.
Their “classy-casual” restaurant greets guests with an array of bronze, blue and gold, along with a mix of beat-heavy pop songs. After customers began to share feedback on the dishes they ate, Earl’s Legacy West became the test location for new foods in the U.S.
“The food scene in Texas is thriving,” Burns says. “Why not tailor and get advice from our customers here?”
Though co-founder Leroy Fuller has since passed away, his son and co-founder Stan Fuller, remains active as CEO.
“He’ll check in on us and make decisions with his board,” Burns says. “He wants to make sure his vision is still there. It’s for sure changed over the years into a more sophisticated brand for everyone to enjoy.”
Earl’s first came to Plano because they said they felt the Legacy West fit their sophisticated, yet casual brand.
“People want to have a place they can go where it’s almost fine dining, but they can go in wearing Lululemon or a T-shirt and feel comfortable,” Burns says. “The customers have really enjoyed that.”
Earl’s also offers their employees the chance to move through the ranks during their time on staff. Burns, like many others, began working as a server 19 years ago before eventually becoming promoted.
“People are a part of our staff at the beginning of their career and stay through the end,” Burns says. “We’re really proud of that internal culture that we create.”
From their new seafood tower to their barbacoa pizza, Earl’s menu has an array of shareable options.
“I really wanted it to be where if you wanted to order a family-style meal, you could,” Burns says. “We want our food to be fun and easy.”
Though Earl’s has changed over the years, Burns says they try paying tribute to the Fullers’ original vision by keeping the same mascot — a pig — on their menu, and by being as communicative with their customers as they can.
“We try to capture moments,” Burns says. “We want people to celebrate here and we tailor to that. We want to fit ourselves to them, not the other way around.”