Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc on Thursday said it will open its first "Tasty Made" hamburger restaurant this fall in Lancaster, Ohio.
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The burrito seller's newest chain will serve only hamburgers, french fries and milkshakes, a recipe that has worked well for California's beloved In-N-Out Burger chain that consistently gets high marks from diners.
It will not be the burrito seller's first effort to expand into new cuisines. It debuted ShopHouse Southeast Asian Kitchen in 2001 and invested in Pizzeria Locale in 2013.
Chipotle won a huge following for its "good food, fast" philosophy that includes serving meats from animals raised without antibiotics and organic produce when available. But it is still fighting to win back customers who abandoned the chain after a series of food safety lapses last year.
"Tasty Made" will compete in a crowded and competitive category dominated by "better burger" chains such as Five Guys Burgers and Fries, Shake Shack Inc, The Counter, The Habit and Smashburger. Many of those chains also serve food made from high-quality ingredients.
(Reporting by Lisa Baertlein in Los Angeles; Editing by Dan Grebler)