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Chicago’s DMK Burger Bar Eyes Detroit Expansion

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Between seven and ten locations could hit metro Detroit and Ann Arbor over the next decade

burger with egg and bacon
A DMK burger with roasted Hatch green chile, a fried egg, Sonoma Jack cheese, and smoked bacon.
Neil Burger
Brenna Houck is a Cities Manager for the Eater network. She previously edited Eater Detroit and reported for Eater. You can follow her on the internet at @brennahouck.

Chicago-born DMK Burger Bar is making a big expansion push in the Midwest and California and eying opportunities in Southeast Michigan. The mini-chain, home to one of the Windy City’s essential burgers, announce today that it’s looking for local franchise partners in metro Detroit and Ann Arbor.

DMK was founded in in 2009 by five-times James Beard nominated chef Michael Kornick and David Morton of the Morton’s Steakhouse legacy. The restaurant quickly gained a following for using grass-fed beef and potato buns made specially for DMK by Highland Baking in Chicago. DMK’s menu also features items like hand-cut fries loaded with toppings such as parmesan and truffle cream or Wisconsin cheddar and scallions.

The company currently operates five burger bars in Illinois smaller outposts at Navy Pier and Soldier Field. Last month, the owner’s revealed to Eater Chicago an aggressive franchising plan in partnership with David Grossman, an entrepreneur who helped scale Freshii and Subway. The group is aiming to open roughly 400 locations over the next 10 years. On Tuesday, the company confirmed plans to expand to San Diego.

“We are hoping to have our franchise partner(s) secured within the next few months and open at least one location in 2018,” Grossman tells Eater in a statement. “We are aiming to open seven to ten DMK Burger Bars in the Detroit metro area, including Ann Arbor.”

Hand-cut fries from DMK Burger Bar.
Neil Burger

The franchise fee for the first unit is $30,000 with a 20 percent discount on subsequent DMK units, according to Eater Chicago. The overall startup costs will also vary, with smaller locations starting around $400,000 and larger ones costing around $750,000. Anyone looking for more franchise information can find it on the company’s website.

Chicago’s DMK Burger Bar Wants to Open 400 Locations in 10 Years [ECHI]
Chicago’s DMK Burger Bar Looking to Open in San Diego [ESD]
All Expansions Coverage [ED]
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