Smashburger Explains its Burger-Beer-Pairing Program
December 3, 2012
Smashburger disproved the notion that a brand couldn’t be both local and national when it created special burgers for each of the markets or regions in which it operates. For example, in Costa Rica, where its first store opened in San Jose on Dec. 1, Smashburger devised a burger topped with local favorites chorizo, grilled Turrialba cheese, refried black beans, fried potato sticks and a sauce of mayo, cilantro and Lizano salsa. Now it is pursuing a similar strategy with local craft beers, creating partnerships small brewers and offering burger and beer pairings.
Many small chains and independents already have extensive craft-beer menus, and major fast-casual chains are testing relationships, such as Chipotle with 5 Rabbit and Bertucci’s with Samuel Adams. But Smashburger’s program involves multiple craft brewers nationally. Smashburger Founder and Chief Concept Officer Tom Ryan talked to BurgerBusiness.com about its craft-beer program and offered a quick update on Tom’s Urban 24, the 24-hour “modern comfort food with an urban twist” restaurant he recently opened as a separate venture in Denver.
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