2 new steakhouses to hire up to 200

Firebirds Wood Fired Grill, a North Carolina-based chain of steakhouses, will open two restaurants in southwest Ohio this fall, employing a combined 170 to 200 people, company officials announced Wednesday.

A 230-seat, 6,800-square-foot Firebirds grill is slated to open in Austin Landing in Miami Twp. in Montgomery County, and a 250-seat, 7,992-square-foot restaurant will open in the Deerfield Town Center in Deerfield Twp. in Warren County, according to Stephen Loftis, vice president of marketing for Firebirds. Each restaurant will employ 85 to 100, Loftis said.

The Charlotte, N.C. company currently operates one Ohio restaurant in Niles in northeast Ohio and will open a Columbus-area location this summer, Loftis said.

Firebirds Wood Fired Grill currently operates 29 restaurants in 12 states and was founded in 2000 by Dennis L. Thompson, who was the co-founder of Lone Star Steakhouse and Saloon and served as its vice president of real estate from 1992-97. Thompson also was the original owner of the Fox & Hound Bar and Grill chain.

Randy Gunlock — president of RG Properties, developer of the Austin Landing multi-use project — said in a news release that Firebirds “will be a great addition to the already successful lineup we are featuring … . Firebirds is exactly the kind of restaurant this area is looking for, and I cannot wait to see it flourish in this market.”

It is not clear whether Firebirds Wood Fired Grill may be a replacement of sorts for Rue Dumaine, whose owners are re-thinking their commitment to relocate their restaurant and to launch a companion restaurant called Alligator Annie’s in Austin Landing, in part because of an 18-month delay in the construction of a retail section of the development. RG Properties officials declined comment beyond their news release Wednesday.

Three restaurants are already open in Austin Landing: Five Guys Burgers and Fries, Panera Bakery & Cafe and BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse.

For more information about Firebirds Wood Fired Grill, go to www.firebirdsrestaurants.com.

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