Presenting This Year's Crop of New Burger Joints: More Umami, Another The Counter, And BurgerFi

We're still living in a burger Renaissance folks. As you may recall, the past few years saw a surge of new burger joints, some came from highfalutin gourmets chefs (think Joseph Mahon's Burger Parlor, Charlie Palmer's DG Burger, and Marcus Samuellson's MarcBurger), some came from the In-N-Out-level chains, (Five Guys and The Habit, to name a few) and others came from categories of their own (G Burger in La Habra, Crow Burger Kitchen in Newport Beach, and the second outlet of Slater's 50/50 in Huntington Beach ).

This year's crop of patty peddlers is quickly looking like it's coming from somewhere in the comfy middle: gourmet burgers from chains. First there was a press release that LA's Umami Burger wasn't just settling with opening just one in Anaheim, but also one in Laguna Beach and another at The Camp in Costa Mesa. Readers who work at Irvine's Park Place have also have tipped us off that The Counter is opening its third OC location there. And then there's BurgerFi, a gourmet burger chain out of Florida which will take over a vacated KFC on PCH in Laguna Beach.

Those who thought that spot was going to be another burger joint called


didn't get it wrong. We're talking about the same place. According to this


, the owner reportedly had a change of heart and decided to align the restaurant with his father's Florida chain. From the looks of their


, one defining characteristic is that they brand their buns with the BurgerFi logo. Other than customizable burgers and a "secret" menu, the menu is full of such things as beer, cupcakes, frozen custard and "hipster" dogs.

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