Like most innovative concepts, the McAlister's Deli chain began as the simple idea of a restaurant novice. Our founder was a dentist who happened to have a passion for restaurants with fast, personal service and great food. He spent years tracking winners and losers, learning from both, watching for his chance to enter the game with something different.
Joined by his sons, our founder developed McAlister's unique combination of hearty-sized deli fare, served quickly with a side of Southern charm. So, in 1989, he opened the original McAlister's Deli restaurant in a converted gas station in Oxford, Mississippi. The response from customers was overwhelming and, as one might expect. There were many requests for franchises.
By 1995, McAlister's Corporation was recognized by INC. Magazine as one of America's fastest-growing privately held companies. Its strength as a leading concept in "quick casual" category was noted by industry-leading publications. In 2009 McAlister's was recognized by Parents Magazine as one of the top 10 Best Fast Casual Restaurants. Attracted by McAlister's potential, McAlister's is currently owned by Roark Capital, who is continuing the growth and leadership necessary to complement the founder's product expertise and vision, and fueling the growth of the McAlister's chain as one of the nation's top franchise opportunities. It's still about pride. It's still about persistence. And more than ever, it's about potential.