Chili's To Spice Up Sawmill Crossing


If you want your "baby-back, baby-back, baby-back ribs," your wish has been granted.

Chili's Restaurant will start building a 4,202-square foot Sawmill Crossing eating-and-drinking establishment in early June. And its first platter of baby-back ribs which inspired the catchy commercial is scheduled to be served some time in November of this year.

"All of our 16 Chili's Restaurants in Arizona are strong performers, and the Payson location met all of our criteria," said Louis Adams, a spokesperson for Chili's Dallas-based parent company, Brinker International.

"Obviously, Payson has grown to meet that criteria, and that's why we think it's ready to support a Chili's," Adams said.

Brinker is one of the largest restaurant operators in the nation, with nine casual-dining concepts and annual revenues approaching $2 billion.

Chili's is a casual dining, sit-down restaurant below the fine-dining league but well above the fast-food experience with offerings such as its famous baby-back ribs, fajitas, salads, margaritas, the half-pound Old-timer Burger, fresh-baked desserts, and the Awesome Blossom a fresh whole onion that's sliced to resemble a "blossom," hand-battered, fried, and served with a special sauce.

Its Sawmill Crossing location will be on the Beeline Highway next to The Stockmen's Bank.

"We're delighted to be able to bring Chili's to Payson," said Paul Peterson, corporate counsel for the Sawmill Crossing's developer and owner, Kaibab Industries, which spent a year ironing out details until a contract was finally inked last Friday.

"It is not only what our development needs, but it's also going to be a tremendous asset for the community."

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