What is in this article?:
- Smashburger adjusts for Los Angeles market
- Burgers for the next generation
Smashburger's new décor package will define the concept’s next generation of restaurants.
Burgers for the next generation
Ryan said burger lovers are tired of 50-year-old brands that have long defined the quick-service segment. “We’re defining burger occasions for the next generation,” he added.
Like all Smashburger locations, the new unit has a regionally specific burger. The L.A. Burger, which debuted at the Thousand Oaks location last year, is topped with a fried egg, a crispy wonton square, a generous amount of fresh cilantro and cucumber slices, and lettuce and tomato. A Japanese-style ginger dressing completes the Asian-fusion flavors. The burger is served on a bun sprinkled with black and white sesame seeds.
The Culver City location features an edited menu while the company studies what will work best in the Los Angeles market. There are no hot dogs or crispy, and the menu has only two salads. An item from the Los Angeles menu, a mushroom burger with Swiss cheese and truffle oil, is scheduled to roll out nationwide this week.
The new décor package includes digital menu boards, which allow for easier rotation of seasonal specials. Seating includes a mix of high and low tables and chairs, with standing tables for those waiting on to-go orders and bar seating in front of a window for solo diners. Glass panels etched with the chain’s logo separate tables. Photos featuring California imagery line the walls, and posters throughout the restaurant remind guests about the brand’s points of differentiation.
Two more Smashburger locations are expected to open within the next six months, in Hollywood and Redondo Beach.
Ryan said the Los Angeles area will be a hub for company-owned restaurants, though it’s possible franchisees will also join into the mix there. Smashburger is roughly 50-percent franchise operated.