Hundreds swarmed Utah’s newest Raising Cane’s restaurant in Midvale on Thursday, and it wasn’t just for the chicken.
They were there to see Grammy-nominated rapper Post Malone (real name Austin Richard Post) a resident of Midvale who helped design the restaurant after personally reaching out to the chain’s CEO and founder Todd Graves.
Both Malone and Graves were on hand early Thursday morning for its opening amid frigid temperatures, according to the Salt Lake Tribune.
“I appreciate everybody waiting around in the cold and the snow,” Malone told fans, according to the Tribune.
Outside the restaurant, the “Circles” performer signed body parts, posted for selfies and gave high fives, the Tribune reported. He returned to interact more with fans after a tour of the new business.
Graves told the Tribune that the restaurant’s location at 850 E. Fort Union Blvd. was largely chosen because of its proximity to Post’s Cottonwood Heights, Utah, mansion, where the rapper has lived since 2019.
“‘Can you put a Raising Cane’s close to my house in Utah?’” Graves recalled from a conversation with Post, speaking with a bullhorn to the crowd. “I said, ‘Hell, yeah.’”
The Midvale restaurant “has been renovated from the inside out to reflect Post’s bold style and enthusiastic personality,” according to a company statement. Its walls are pink, unlike the other shops that tout a more neutral look.
The restaurant’s outer walls feature prints inspired by the rapper’s signature tattoos, including a close-up of Post’s tatooed face. As if the paint job wasn’t “Posty” enough, several of the rapper’s outfits — including two from the 2019 Grammy Awards — are displayed inside the restaurant. His personal guitars will also be framed.
Customers can order Post’s go-to meal: four chicken tenders with fries, sauce, two slices of Texas toast and unsweetened tea mixed with lemonade.
Midvale Mayor Marcus Stevenson said he hoped the new addition to the community would “bring in new people who maybe wouldn’t otherwise think of Midvale.”
“Unique is the optimum word for what this is,” Stevenson told the Tribune.
Graves, who opened the first Raising Cane’s in his native Baton Rouge, La., in 1996, described Malone as a friend, with their relationship built on mutual admiration.
“I was a fan of his music, and he was a fan of my chicken fingers,” Graves told the Tribune. “We talked about life, we shotgunned some beers, and a friendship was born.”
There are more than 600 Cane’s locations across the United States, including 78 in California and four in Utah, according to the ScrapeHero database. Texas leads all states with 191 restaurants.
Malone, who was born in New York, has referenced the Beehive state in several of his songs. In 2019, he told Variety that he considered Utah an “oasis” away from Hollywood.