Simply serving better food

BurgerFi taps into consumer desire for quality ingredients

Photo by Suzanne Pacey/staff
Burger Fi owners Terrie and Ron Altman with Pamela Burton, right, GM of the Alpharetta location.
Photo provided by BurgerFi
Photo provided by BurgerFi
Veggie green style
Photo provided by BurgerFi
Cry & Fry
Photo provided by BurgerFi
Photo provided by BurgerFi
Conflicted Burger
Photo provided by BurgerFi

With the abundance of burger options available in the area—from fast food to fancy — BurgerFi in Alpharetta has quickly established a fan base drawn to its “never ever” concept of fresh food options.

This concept, notes owner Ron Altman, ensures no steroids, antibiotics, growth hormones, chemicals or additives are ever used in any of their menu choices—a big differentiator from other restaurants, he adds.

“Our goal from the beginning has been to delight our customers and deliver best in class service,” said Altman, who opened the Windward Parkway location in 2013 along with wife, Terrie.

“We don’t strive merely to serve our guests burgers and fries, we aim to deliver an experience which is as good as our food.  We want our guests to come back and enjoy our food and atmosphere over and over.”

The menu includes six versions of natural, open-range Angus beef burgers, a veggie burger with crispy quinoa, Vienna beef hot dogs, fresh cut fries – all prepared from scratch each day. BurgerFi also offers a variety of frozen custards, along with craft beer – something you won’t find at the average fast casual restaurant, notes Altman.

Since opening the doors three years ago, BurgerFi has been well received by the community, said Altman. He credits the success to matching what many people are looking for when they choose to dine out.

“People want natural wholesome food and are very smart about what they eat.  Guests appreciate that we prepare our food fresh from scratch every day. Here, you won’t find any fast food shortcuts,” said Altman.

Along the way, BurgerFi has picked up numerous local awards, including “Best of North Fulton” numerous times from readers of Appen Media publications, “Best Fast Casual Restaurant” at Taste of Alpharetta, and “Grand Champion” from Budweiser in their Atlanta burger competition.

Ron Altman has a long connection to the food service industry, retiring in 2012 after a 30-year career as a top executive in several Fortune 100 companies including Kraft Foods, H.J. Heinz, The Dannon Company, and ConAgra Foods. After much soul searching, he and wife Terrie, a former real estate broker, decided to re-enter the industry as owners and began searching for the right fit.

Living in Tampa at the time, they had come across the original BurgerFi restaurant in South Florida and found it superior to similar concepts in the industry. By then, the Altmans had spent considerable time researching all the “hot restaurants” and “best burgers” and knew BurgerFi was special.

“The food quality and the guest experience were head and shoulders above anything else,” said Ron Altman. “The burgers reminded us of the old fashioned hamburger stands we loved as kids… delicious, juicy burgers with lots of topping choices on toasted buns.”

But the decision to open their own BurgerFi included a major life change.

“This new life calling had such appeal, we were even willing to move from our great life on the Gulf of Mexico in Tampa, and move up to Atlanta to start the new business,” said Ron Altman, noting the rights to develop BurgerFi in Tampa were not available.

There were only two BurgerFi locations operating in the country when the Altman’s took on the opportunity, but their instincts said it was a winner.

“We became pioneers of the BurgerFi brand,” said Ron Altman. Today there are more than 85 locations across the country. Both Terrie and Ron Altman serve on the board of directors of BurgerFi International’s Franchise Advisory Council.

Although they are relative newcomers to North Fulton, the Altman’s are fully invested in the community, and earmark a minimum 10 percent of their profits to organizations including The Drake House, charities that work with special-needs children, veterans and military, as well as ongoing fundraising for schools and churches.  Altman said BurgerFi recently gave free meals to over 300 police, fire and rescue officers in the community.

With one successful restaurant now operating smoothly, the Altman’s have set their sights on additional BurgerFi locations, and are currently considering promising new locations.

Ron Altman said the catering side of the business also continues to grow, as they look to bring BurgerFi into the community to reach even more people.  But at the end of the day, Altman said it comes down to the experience of each individual customer that steps through the doors.

“Every day we strive to get it right, and focus on choosing to do the right thing,” said Altman. ■


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