Foodservice Equipment & Supplies


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50 Burger Chain Increases Production in Smaller Space B urger 21, based in Tampa, Fla., is not your run-of-the-mill burger chain. For example, while beef occupies the center of its menu, the company offers a unique interpretation of the ubiquitous burger. "We look at a burger as any protein that can be chopped, ground and made into a patty," says Mike Remes, corporate executive chef for Burger 21. "We don't limit burgers to our high- quality certified Angus beef that comes in fresh and is hand-pattied in house; we will use sushi- grade ahi tuna, shrimp, turkey, chicken and a range of vegetarian options as well." Burger 21 was established under the um- brella of Tampa-based Front Burner Brands, owner of The Melting Pot restaurant chain. Front Burner was owned by three brothers: Mark, Mike and Bob Johnston. Mark and his wife, Arlene, opened Burger 21's first location in Tampa in November 2010. However, five years ago, Burger 21 branched off as part of a new restaurant group, Scratch Concepts, with Mark and Arlene still at the helm. This com- pany also owns and runs Grillsmith, which has five locations and a sixth planned for 2019. Burger 21 has 25 locations, including five corporate restaurants and two licensed loca- tions in Tampa International Airport. The company's network of 18 franchised sites includes new locations in Alpharetta, Ga., and Albuquerque, N.M. Although the majority of its restaurants fea- ture a fast-casual format, Burger 21 continues to test a QSR model in its St. Petersburg, Fla., and Albuquerque, N.M., locations. SUCCESS STORIES

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