BurgerFi opened July 10 at 2844 South Main St., next to the Trackside Grill between Watts Drive and Cherokee Street.
It brings a bit of a beach-shack vibe to contrast with the small, Southern town feel provided by the neighboring Southern Museum of Civil War and Locomotive History.
Michael Diamond, the owner/operator of the new franchise, said the three-month construction completely renovated the 2,500-square-foot property, including floor to ceiling windows lining the street front that can slide open to create patio access.
Diamond said he expected the opening to be a slow start, but the "open-arms" reception has been quite the opposite, with lines out the door almost every day.
"I always wanted to own a hamburger joint," Diamond said. But this is no typical burger joint.
The casual-dining restaurant offers all-natural, farm-raised beef, but is still focused on fast service, with an order being filled within eight to 10 minutes, Diamond said.
Quality and variety
With a wide range of fresh, never frozen, healthy options, the only thing missing from BurgerFi's food is the grease.
Still, there are some juicy burgers, such as the B.A.D. (Breakfast All Day) burger with American cheese, hickory bacon drizzled with maple syrup, a fried egg, hash browns, grilled diced onion and ketchup.
Diamond said the all-natural Angus beef patties, made by hand each day, are free of antibiotics and hormones.
BurgerFi also offers a crisp veggie burger, made with quinoa, a grain-like ingredient that is high in protein and fiber, with white cheddar cheese and a multigrain bun.
Charlee Luther, 23, who works at Whole Foods in east Cobb, said as a vegetarian it's great to have the franchise 2 miles from her home.
Besides burgers, the menu lists specialty hot dogs, including chicken or Kobe beef options, as well as pork sausage links.
Fresh-cut French fries are made to order, with a range of toppings including salt and vinegar, parmesan cheese and herbs, or hot Cajun spices.
Once patrons reach the counter, they are greeted by a large display of craft bottled beer available at the location, including local varieties from Burnt Hickory and Red Hare.
Outdoor deck seating
BurgerFi offers a hangout with a mix of rustic and modern fixtures, from the naturally stained wood panels running along the walls to the gray and red metal tables and chairs.
The Kennesaw franchise is different from the other 150 restaurants opened nationwide by the Florida-based company, including the two other metro Atlanta locations in Alpharetta and Emory Point.
The Main Street location can seat more than 90 patrons, with both indoor and outdoor seating, including a one-of-a-kind upstairs deck that Diamond said he is considering renting for events and parties.
Charlee Luther sat with her sister, Angela Luther, 22, on the patio Saturday overlooking Kennesaw's downtown while splitting an order of fries.
Both girls said they were anxious for the new "stand out" burger joint to open, and are even more excited to see what other establishments might spring up in the area.
Diamond declined to say how much of an investment was required to start up the franchise.
According to the BurgerFi.com website, the initial investment can range from $313,750 to $627,083, including the fee paid to BurgerFi, equipment, inventory, grand-opening marketing and three months' advance rent.
Diamond said when deciding to start this venture, he knew Kennesaw was about to revitalize its downtown and is "glad to be a part of it." ]]>