Burger King: Have It Your Way… With a BeerBy Todd • Jan 25th, 2010 • Category: Burger Blog
All of Burgerworld is abuzz these days about the King’s latest Whopper of a proclamation. Late last week, Burger King announced that you’ll soon be able to get an ice-cold beer with your cheeseburger at its new location, opening in Miami’s South Beach district in February.
But before you freak out (as many have already) about pimply-faced teens working a keg tap right next to the fryolator at your neighborhood BK, understand this key component to the story. You won’t be able to just walk into your regular Burger King and order up a brewski. We’re talking about a whole new location, a separate storefront altogether called the Whopper Bar.
At these smaller outlets with open-style kitchens, you’ll reportedly be able to get select variations on the traditional Whopper, like the Angry Whopper, the Rodeo Whopper, the Texas Double Whopper, the Bourbon Whopper, and the bar-exclusive Black & Bleu Steakhouse XT. Over 20 sauces will reportedly be available for build-your-own burgers and displayed in something the chain calls a “visible toppings theater.”
According to the New York Times, the idea first came from Russ Klein, the company’s president of global marketing, strategy, and innovation, during a trip to Germany (natch), where some franchise owners had set up a bar in the backroom. Back in March ’08, though, when the idea was first floated for Whopper Bars in the US, beer was not on the menu. (It’s still not at the first trial Whopper Bar, opened at Universal Orlando.) But then Anheuser-Busch stepped in and made the King an offer even he couldn’t refuse. “You can have America’s favorite beers with America’s favorite burger,” said Chuck Fallon, the chain’s North America president. Whopper Bars will sell only A-B beers as well as MillerCoors beers at first, with more to be added if all goes well, says the chain.
Served in aluminum bottles to keep them cold, a BK beer will set you back $4.25. With a Whopper combo, the price will be $7.99. (That’s 2 bucks more than a Whopper combo with a Coke.)
The Whopper Bar will also offer unique twists like outdoor dining, 24/7 hours, a walk-up window, and local delivery of all items except beer. If the concept takes off in South Beach, expect to see more Whopper Bars open in tourist destinations like Las Vegas, L.A., and Times Square in New York City.
So what do you think, Burger Nation? Is burgers ‘n’ beer at BK a great idea? Or has the King finally gone out of his big plastic head? Let’s hear your thoughts…