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The article includes non-franchised national chains such as In-N-Out Burger and Shake Shack, as well as Five Guys Burgers and Fries, a franchise that has already sold out all markets available for development in the US and Canada. For me, Drew’s work is particularly valuable for introducing three relatively unknown burger chains that are poised be the next big thing: Boardwalk Fresh Burgers and Fries, Elevation Burger, and Mooyah.
Here are some of the article’s key takeways on these up-and-coming burger franchises:
Boardwalk Fresh Burgers and Fries
1. Brothers Dave and Fran DiFerdinando founded Boardwalk Fries in 1981 (at one time, the world’s only french fries franchise), which eventually evolved into Boardwalk Fresh Burgers and Fries in 2007. The franchise currently has 16 units open in the US.
2. The chain serves Boardwalk-style fries and burgers, which customers can top with differnet kinds of cheese, vegetables, and other toppings, on white or wheat bread. Sauces and toppings are free and unlimited. The famous fries, which are covered in vinegar and Old Bay seasoning, are cut fresh every morning and cooked in peanut oil multiple times and at different temperatures to get the trademark consistency and texture. Boardwalk’s menu also includes chicken, veggie burgers, premium shakes, funnel cakes, and salads.
3. Most locations offer a 20% discount to all members of military families. Through their LifeWell program, the company raised enough money for the completion of two fresh water boreholes in remote African villages, which will serve 500-1,000 people.
1. Elevation Burger was founded in 2005 by Hans Hess, out of frustration when he couldn’t find a burger he loved after leaving California in 1999. Consistent with its mission to serve good, organic food that is sustainable and fresh, Elevation Burger only serves free-range, certified organic lean beef, from 100% grass-fed cows. Grass fed beef is much lower in saturated fat, higher in Omega 3 fatty acids, and is far less likely to contain any traces of antibiotics than its grain-fed counterparts.
2. Other items on the menu are veggie burgers, hand scooped ice cream shakes, malts, and fresh baked cookies.
3. Elevation Burger has been franchising since 2008, with about 35 locations open, mostly in the East Coast.
1. Mooyah, obviously inspired by the word “booyah” with a bovine twist, was named Fast Casual’s #1 Moover and Shaker in 2009. Among the three up-and-coming burger chains mentioned in the article, Mooyah is the biggest, with more than 85 locations open.
2. In addition to hamburgers and fries, Mooyah’s menu includes turkey burgers, veggie burgers, grilled cheese, hot dogs, and shakes. Customers have the option to have their burgers wrapped in iceburg lettuce, or on white or whole wheat buns. Customers have a wide array of toppings to choose from, including avocado, bacon, cheddar, swiss, and American cheese, in addition to other sauces and traditional veggie toppings.
3. Customers can pre-order food online, by phone, or by fax. Mooyah gives special offers to members of the Mooyah Text Club (text “mooyah” to 89686 to join).