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Wild Wings vs. Buffalo Wild Wings - Canadian vs. U.S. chains (split from Ontario board)

TexSquared Jan 11, 2011 09:55 PM

I'd rather Anchor Bar open a location here. They would win :-)

But as for Buffalo WWs vs WW, I want BWW to demolish the local copycat, for one important reason: in order to encourage the other American chains (Fuddrucker's, Five Guys, Chick-Fil-A, Carl's Jr., Famous Dave's, etc) to also expand here.

Last thing we need is another invader crash-and-burn (Krispy Kreme, Wolfgang Puck, and Papa John's come to mind) to scare away the foreign competition we badly need. For the xenophobes, keep in mind that they are employing Canadians while here, to build their restaurants and then run them. More American imports, more jobs for us. So on that note I will support the American. Once BWW opens in Oshawa I'll be there. I will never set foot in Wild Wing (or their stupid Pink Burger), on principle.

If the WW owner wins his lawsuit, then that means every Canadian business that wants to avoid competition can do so in the courtroom. Lick's wants to block Fuddruckers? Easy, register "fuddruckers.ca" and claim they own the trademark. This sets a very dangerous precedent.

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  1. j
    jamesm RE: TexSquared Jan 12, 2011 03:13 AM

    I'm pretty sure that's not how trademark law works.

    3 Replies
    1. re: jamesm
      TexSquared RE: jamesm Jan 14, 2011 08:10 PM

      Seems like this is a popular game in Canada. I know it's slightly off-topic but is another example:


      So, Canadian clothing store chain Fairweather opens a few token stores under the "Target Apparel" name (and using, conveniently, a red and white colour scheme) in order to block Target's entry into the market.

      Also, wasn't there a "Montana" restaurant downtown (which was featured in Restaurant Makeover), at the same time as the "Montana's Cookhouse Saloon" chain (owned by Cara Operations)? I don't recall any court intervention there.

      Again, I say let the market decide who sinks or swims, not the courtroom.

      1. re: TexSquared
        Davwud RE: TexSquared Jan 15, 2011 04:21 AM

        I rarely go to Zeller's but every time I do I'm amazed at how much it's looking more and more like a Target.


        1. re: Davwud
          TexSquared RE: Davwud Jan 15, 2011 09:01 AM

          I don't go into Zellers often but to me it was always a poor clone of Walmart (more cluttered, narrower aisles) but using Target's red and white color scheme. The new American owners (first Jerry Zucker, then HRDC Equity) must have decided to clean it up to make them more attractive for eventual transfer to Target, which is what has happened. I hope the Pickering Zellers (which is a disorganized mess I prefer to avoid) is one that gets converted to Target, as it's not a total sale of the chain but just a transfer of most of the leases.

    2. j
      jmarcroyal RE: TexSquared Jan 12, 2011 03:30 AM

      I for one wouldnt mind some more Chipotle's in places I can actually drive to without paying...

      1. Davwud RE: TexSquared Jan 12, 2011 03:46 AM

        I'd prefer that we have our own home grown brand but that's not always gonna work. I'm not a big "Protectionist" because my firm belief is, I want the best no matter where it comes from. If ours isn't good enough, stop whining (or suing) and make it better.

        All that said, I'll go to WW before BWW since I've been to both and find WW to be better. Neither is anything more than okay but they are what they are. I go to the local WW sometimes because it's convenient, the girl who owns it is nice (and I feel sorry for her), it's usually not busy so I can get whatever I want on TV and the beer is cold.

        I've talked to people who've dealt with the WW corp. and I really don't care for their business practice. To sum it up in one word, "Greedy."


        19 Replies
        1. re: Davwud
          TexSquared RE: Davwud Jan 12, 2011 08:09 AM

          "I want the best no matter where it comes from. If ours isn't good enough, stop whining (or suing) and make it better."

          Exactly. Put simply, "Let the market decide".

          Tim Horton's donuts are garbage to me, but the market supported them over Krispy Kreme. Olive Garden failed against locally-owned East Side Mario and Alice Fazooli's*. Outback Steakhouse got beat by locally-owned The Keg (not sure which failed first, Outback or Biftheque). Starbucks came in and didn't finish the job they set out to do - Second Cup is alive and well. And I certainly don't see a rapid Canadian expansion of Tony Roma's, Applebee's and Chili's which to me means they're not doing too well against incumbents Jack Astor's, Kelsey's and Montana's.

          In all these cases, the locals didn't sue the foreigners to try to keep them out. The invader got beat fair and square.

          For a guy who is a retired pro boxer, Wild Wing's owner should be ashamed of himself. He's ducking a fight like Floyd Mayweather ducking Manny Pacquiao! :-) He should look around -- given the pattern above, he's not the underdog at all. It's the Americans that are getting beat on our soil.

          * I do smell a rat here; I suspect SIR Corp named their Italian chain that so they can employ a similar strategy to keep the American "Fazoli" chain out of Canada....

          1. re: TexSquared
            Davwud RE: TexSquared Jan 12, 2011 08:41 AM

            I had read an article some time back about the two trying to come to some sort of deal on naming rights. In the US I believe. Now it seems like that either deal has fallen through or it didn't go well for WW. Perhaps this is a little retribution??

            As you said, let the market decide. He could hang the "Proudly Canadain" label on it and send BWW back to the states.


            1. re: Davwud
              TexSquared RE: Davwud Jan 12, 2011 08:59 AM

              What's also worth noting is, WW is a fast-food/take-out type of place (the one near my house is next door to a Little Caesar's in a strip plaza) while BWW is a full-service sit-down restaurant, more along the lines of Boston Pizza or Kelsey's.

              Entirely different restaurant types. This isn't like Starbucks vs Second Cup where they're essentially clones of each other.

              I don't support "proudly Canadian" alone. I support quality and service, at a fair price. No matter who owns the business. And I find just how much the Americans "get it" and the Canadians don't, every time I'm across the border.

              1. re: TexSquared
                Davwud RE: TexSquared Jan 12, 2011 09:07 AM

                I know plenty of people who won't support and American company and think I'm anti Canadian for doing so. Even though they were at TH 5 times a day when Wendy's owned them.


                1. re: Davwud
                  TexSquared RE: Davwud Jan 12, 2011 09:39 AM

                  Don't get me started on the brainwashing of Canadians by Tim Horton's....

                  1. re: TexSquared
                    PoppiYYZ RE: TexSquared Jan 12, 2011 04:12 PM

                    Please don't hit me, but I've had great hot big crispy breaded chicken wings at Kelseys. It can be hit and miss from store to store. In fact, one young cook put so much cinnamon in the wing sauce (he said it enhanced the heat), we had to ask for a replacement "regular" order. But they were good.

                    PS Coffee Time make a much better richer tasting brew than Timmy's.

                    1. re: PoppiYYZ
                      TexSquared RE: PoppiYYZ Jan 12, 2011 08:30 PM

                      I won't hit you, but to me, breaded = crap. A proper Buffalo wing is NOT breaded (Duff's, Anchor Bar, Barbill, etc -- none of them bread the wings as it's wrong) If I want breaded wings I'd buy them frozen at M&M or Costco and fry/bake them myself.

                      No surprise Coffee Time makes better coffee. Timmy's has brainwashed enough people, they could serve hot tap water in place of the coffee and people would still line up at the drive thru for it.

                      1. re: TexSquared
                        Davwud RE: TexSquared Jan 13, 2011 04:29 AM

                        The old chocolate and vanilla argument.

                        I like 'em both ways so it's all good to me.


                        1. re: Davwud
                          TexSquared RE: Davwud Jan 13, 2011 04:57 AM

                          So you're saying hot tap water in a Timmie's cup is the equal of Coffee Time's coffee? :-)

                          Joking of course, but my point was, if it's breaded it's not Buffalo. It's still a wing obviously, but not authentic Buffalo style. Like calling California rolls "traditional Japanese sushi" or the junk from Bourbon St. Grill as "authentic Cajun food".

                          1. re: TexSquared
                            jmarcroyal RE: TexSquared Jan 13, 2011 05:39 AM

                            Coffee Time coffee is pretty good but I never go there unless someone drags me to one. I always call it Crack Time based on the unsavoury customers and locations that 90% of CT seems to be have. Tims I dont really mind, I guess my mind has been warped sufficiently enough into buying them but they are just too hit or miss when it comes to quality.

                            I gotta admit, last November when McDonalds had their free coffee I was having a ton of it and its really good, very consistant too. If you have been avoiding that coffee just because its from McDs you should atleast give it a try...

                2. re: TexSquared
                  fryerlover RE: TexSquared Jan 12, 2011 09:10 AM

                  I wonder if WW locations differ as the one near me Winston Churchill and QEW is full service sitdown with TV's, although no bar sit down area. Have you been to ther locations to compare? I have not.

                  1. re: fryerlover
                    Midknight RE: fryerlover Jan 12, 2011 10:50 AM

                    I completely agree with the statement above "I want the best no matter where it comes from" and let the market decide (one of the main reason I want more than simply hotdogs sold form the stands around the city but that's a different debate), BUT, and it's a big but, if WW has already established its name in the Canada, and the GTA specifically, then he SHOULD be allow to protect his name. If BWW snoozed and didn't trademark the name in Canada, too bad for them. But by the same token, WW shouldn't be allowed to open in the US under the same name either.
                    It's his brand name and his intellectual property. *YOU* may know the difference between WW/BWW, and *I* may know the difference, but we're foodies. The average person may not, and so he has a right, and a responsibility to his franchisees who have bought into the name, to protect the brand name and logo.

                    1. re: Midknight
                      Davwud RE: Midknight Jan 12, 2011 10:54 AM

                      There in lies my belief. I think he can't use the WW in the US but BWW wants to use their's up here. I believe they were supposed to come to an agreement and they're trying to bully him.


                      1. re: Midknight
                        TexSquared RE: Midknight Jan 12, 2011 02:50 PM

                        "*YOU* may know the difference between WW/BWW, and *I* may know the difference, but we're foodies. The average person may not, and so he has a right, and a responsibility to his franchisees who have bought into the name, to protect the brand name and logo."

                        Oh come on, are you insulting the general public's intelligence? Let's take a good look at the logos separately:

                        Black/white/yellow scheme, silhouette of a buffalo with wings in front of a sunset.

                        Red, white, and teal with a palm tree in the center.

                        Unless you're visually impaired, those logos are so different you couldn't possibly go into the wrong place. They're as different as Tim Hortons vs Jack Astor's. Unless BWW comes in here and starts using red-white-teal with palm trees and takes "Buffalo" out of their name, this case should be tossed by the judge.

                  2. re: Davwud
                    TexSquared RE: Davwud Jan 13, 2011 05:24 AM

                    "He could hang the "Proudly Canadain" label on it and send BWW back to the states."

                    Walmart talks about how many Canadians they employ. Like them or not, if Wally closed up shop in Canada tomorrow there would be thousands more unemployed.

                    Which goes back to what I'm saying -- support American businesses who invest here, or at the very least, support businesses that sell quality products, give good service, and charge a fair price for it. We need more foreign investment, not less. If the other companies thinking of coming north see yet another failure (Krispy Kreme, Olive Garden, Outback. Sam's Club) they'll rightfully say "bad place to invest" and take their money elsewhere, like China. Someone else mentioned Chipotle -- they must be having a tough go of it here to not be expanding.

                    At least in the restaurant and retail businesses there are no government-supported cartels like in communications/media (CRTC), banking, and agriculture (marketing boards). So the market can truly decide who sinks and who swims, not the government.

                    1. re: TexSquared
                      jamesm RE: TexSquared Jan 13, 2011 05:38 AM

                      In that case isn't the failure of those franchises just the market speaking? It's not like there are a deficit of succesful American franchises in Canada.

                      1. re: jamesm
                        TexSquared RE: jamesm Jan 13, 2011 07:38 AM

                        They all make the same error. They all think they can do like McDonald's, Wendy's, and the other established American chains, and charge 30-70% higher prices than they do at home. The $1 menu items in America go for $1.29 to $1.69 here.

                        If you're the new kid on the block you had better undercut the incumbents or you won't be around long. Starbucks came in and if they didn't undercut Second Cup they at least price-matched (while opening as close to every SC they could). Needless to say they're still here.

                      2. re: TexSquared
                        Davwud RE: TexSquared Jan 13, 2011 07:48 AM

                        It's possible that Chipotle is taking things slowly. Moe's too. This is not a big market for Tex/Mex that I know of.
                        It's also possible they're just waiting for the next person to write them a cheque.


                        1. re: Davwud
                          TexSquared RE: Davwud Jan 13, 2011 12:19 PM

                          I think this is a large untapped market for Tex-Mex -- think of all the discussions we used to have in the Toronto board about "authentic burritos" and "authentic Mexican" and "authentic Tex-Mex". There must be a demand for it, otherwise local clones Burrito Boyz and Z-teca (and to a lesser extent, Lone Star Texas Grill) would have already failed....

                          Chipotle needs to expand into the suburbs. I know they're different products but Chipotle should be in every plaza/shopping mall where there's a South St. Burger. That's the same price range. Those willing to pay SSB's burger prices will be willing to pay Chipotle's burrito prices.

                3. TheDewster RE: TexSquared Jan 13, 2011 06:41 AM

                  I pray for Anchor bar to franchise, Papa John's are in Barrie I live by it, its good but Panago is better. In and Out Burger would be a great addition as well. A great coffee place would be good since Stabucks tastes burnt and Tim's is now a bad joke. I buy McDonalds coffee at the moment.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: TheDewster
                    TexSquared RE: TheDewster Jan 13, 2011 07:34 AM

                    I doubt In-N-Out will ever expand here. Remember, they only serve fresh beef, prepared in their California headquarters -- so they can't open more than a day's truck drive away from home office. I think their furthest location is Salt Lake City, Utah.

                    if they wanted to expand here they'd have to fly beef in from L.A. every day. Imagine the cost of the "FedEx Express" burgers :-(

                    1. re: TexSquared
                      TheDewster RE: TexSquared Jan 13, 2011 08:35 AM

                      Stockyards Smokehouse and Larder does "Animal Style" burgers and kick ass fried chicken. 699 St.Clair Avenue West
                      Toronto, Ontario, Canada
                      M6C 1B2 check out www.thestockyards.ca, if you go have the beignets incredible!

                      1. re: TexSquared
                        jmarcroyal RE: TexSquared Jan 13, 2011 03:45 PM

                        Or they could open a series of franchises all over the east coast including NY State and Ontario and other major locales, and they could open a new meat processing facility for this coast...

                        1. re: jmarcroyal
                          TexSquared RE: jmarcroyal Jan 13, 2011 04:02 PM

                          If they did that they'd probably only serve the northeastern states (densely populated area) and not bother with Canada (sparsely populated plus the border hassles). As long as they open one in Buffalo or Niagara Falls, perfect!

                    2. ParsleySage RE: TexSquared Jan 13, 2011 07:38 AM

                      I've tried both WW and BWW and not a fan of either. WW doesn't give you the choice of breaded or unbreaded and BWW chicken tastes very bland to me..no seasonings. There is a wing place called Wing Stop that operates mostly in the Southwest region of the US I would prefer to see them open here instead of BWW.

                      1. a
                        Attknee RE: TexSquared Jan 13, 2011 12:02 PM

                        As I recall, Fuddrucker's was here many moons ago, at Dufferin and Steeles or thereabouts if I recall correctly, or maybe it was on Keele south of York U. Regardless, they went the way of Olive Garden in Ontario.

                        BTW, speaking of wings, heading to the Anchor Bar this weekend. First time in many years. We shall see.....

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: Attknee
                          Davwud RE: Attknee Jan 13, 2011 04:42 PM

                          Keele south of Finch

                          Same cursed place that saw demise of Pat and Marios, Hooters and a bunch of others


                          1. re: Attknee
                            TexSquared RE: Attknee Jan 13, 2011 06:06 PM

                            I still can't believe that lame-ass clone East Side Mario was able to beat Olive Garden to the curb. That would be like Fish House beating out Red Lobster or Lick's beating out Burger's Priest.

                          2. l
                            LiviaLunch RE: TexSquared Jan 13, 2011 04:07 PM

                            I haven't agreed with a single word that TexSquared has typed in this thread. The copyright/cybersquatting thought is a complete red herring that a rudimentary knowledge of case law in Canada would dismiss quickly. It's hardly a conspiracy that has kept all these unremarkable U.S. chains from aggressively expanding in Canada, and it's a good thing for those of chowish bent that they simply haven't caught on here. I'm no fan of many of the incumbent chains, but Jeez Louise...

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: LiviaLunch
                              TexSquared RE: LiviaLunch Jan 13, 2011 06:19 PM

                              So you don't agree with letting the market decide which restaurant survives (instead of the courts), you don't agree that foreign investment should be encouraged rather than scared off, you don't agree that Canada is an untapped market for Tex-Mex, and you don't agree that Anchor Bar makes great Buffalo wings? Surely you can't disagree with EVERYTHING I said in this thread.....

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