Foodtastic Inc.(www.foodtastic.ca ) just announced its expansion into the Toronto restaurant market with the opening of its newest Big Rig Kitchen and Brewery (www.bigrigbrew.com) in the Heartland of Mississauga on August 20. They are also opening a second Big Rig Brewery and Kitchen in Richmond Hill.
As part of an aggressive expansion by Big Rig throughout the GTA and Vancouver area, the Ottawa brewery that brought us beer faves like Alpha Bomb IPA and Midnight Kissed Me Cow Double Chocolate Milk Stout is now cropping up outside of the nation’s capital.
The newly opened Heartland location at 5860 Mavis Road is where French brewpub The 3 Brewers vacated its taprooms for good, while Big Rig’s second GTA location is on York Boulevard in another former 3 Brewers location in Richmond Hill.
These mark the popular Canadian brewer’s first locations outside Ottawa.Big Rig offers a casual dining atmosphere, homestyle food, and of course craft beer. They produce an extensive array of craft beer including IPAs, stouts, ales, and even radlers.
The brewery was founded in 2012 and its name was inspired by the nickname for former Sens star Chris Phillips.
Quebec-based franchisor, Foodtastic Inc., acquired the Big Rig Brewery and Big Rig Restaurants brand in June 2019 and but as part of the deal Big Rig’s award-winning brew master Lon Ladell stayed on board and continues to oversee the beermaking.
“Foodtastic is an amazing company and I’m thrilled to continue being a part of Big Rig brewery’s exciting future,” Ladell said at the time. “With the financial support from Foodtastic we can now expand our operations throughout Canada.”
Big Rig is also an award-winning brewer that recently received two gold medals and one silver at the Canadian Brewer awards.
In June 2019, the Big Rig in Ottawa welcomed Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and former U.S. President Barack Obama to the Kanata location to exchange ideas and sample some of their award-winning beers. Obama ordered a Canadian Amber and Trudeau got the Alpha Bomb IPA, Sophie Prescott, Big Rig’s events and social media manager, told CBC.
Acquisitions a major part of the Foodtastic growth plan
“Foodtastic has acquired prominent brands over the last 20 months. We will continue to pursue our strategy by investing in acquiring new brands in the next couple years, as well as supporting our existing network,” said Peter Mammas, President and Chief Executive Officer of Foodtastic.
Foodtastic is the franchisor of multiple restaurant concepts including, Au Coq, La Belle et La Boeuf, Monza, Carlos & Pepe’s, Souvlaki Bar, Nickels, Rotisseries Benny, Chocolato, Big Rig and Bacaro. Foodtastic is a leader in the restaurant franchising business with over 95 restaurants and $180 million in annualized sales.
Foodtastic continues with its expansion strategy
Although the restaurant industry is facing a very uncertain future, Foodtastic is continuing its pursuit to expand its current restaurant system. In fat the franchisor has opened 6 new restaurants in the last few weeks creating over 200 jobs in Quebec City, Montréal, Gatineau and Toronto.
- Au Coq, 7070 Sherbrooke, Montreal
- Big Rig, 5860 Mavis, Mississauga
- Chocolato, 2 Petit Champlain, Québec
- Monza, 5660 Sherbrooke, Montreal
- Monza Promenades Gatineau
- Souvlaki Bar, 105 Ave Guindon, Saint-Sauveur
“We are very pleased with the work our entire team has done which has allowed us to continue with the opening of new locations…We realise that the next several months will be challenged for our dining room concepts but believe with the continued help from the government, landlords, and suppliers we will be able to support our franchisees through these difficult times,” said Mammas.
Foodtastic will be opening four more locations in September including Big Rig Richmond Hill.
- Au Coq Gare Centrale
- Big Rig Richmond Hill
- La Chambre Blainville
- Chocolato – Delray Beach USA
Big Rig Heartland is open 7 days a week, from 11:00 AM on weekdays and 8:00 AM on weekends.
story by Terry Lankstead