Joining the sizzling, patty-filled meat sea of burger chains in the Valley (see: In-N-Out Burger, Habit Burger, Smashburger, Culver's, etc.), a new contender, Burger 21, has announced plans to throw its hamburger hat into the western U.S. ring with its first Arizona restaurant in Chandler.
The fast-casual franchise, founded in Tampa Bay in 2010 by the folks who own The Melting Pot fondue restaurant chain, bills itself as "a chef-inspired brand" with a menu that includes 21 unique burger creations, made-to-order salads, all-beef hot dogs, and a shake bar. Gluten-free items are offered as well.
A press release from the company states that Dan Lenhauser, a Subway franchisee in Phoenix, will open the Chandler location of Burger 21 in 2014. Following that opening, Lenhauser plans to pursue a second Burger 21 in the Phoenix market "over the next several years."
"It's exciting to be the first franchisee to bring Burger 21 out west," says Lenhauser, "and I know that Chandler residents will appreciate the brand's diverse menu and 'beyond the better burger' experience that is truly unlike any other in town."
Burger 21 has nine locations open in Tampa Bay and Orlando; Voorhees, New Jersey; Atlanta, and Charlotte, with 17 in development in six states.