Late last summer, every Front Range location of Fatburger -- the California-based burger chain that has expanded nationwide since it first started slinging patties in the early 1950s -- abruptly parted ways with the parent company, becoming Epic Grill.
Montel Williams, Jack Hercher and Chris Dupuis, the franchisees who brought California's Fatburger to Denver and once had plans to build twenty locations in Colorado, had decided to go their own route, albeit without straying far from the burger concept. Cesar Castillo, manager of the Lone Tree location, told us then that not much would change: "We're the same guys, we just changed the name," he said. "We're doing the same stuff but with more: salads, sandwiches and all that stuff."
It didn't last long: All of the Epic Grill locations have now shut down, packing in the signs from the five restaurants that bore them.
In a bit of a twist, though, one of the original Fatburger spots remains standing: the manager at the outlet at 14221 East Cedar Avenue in Aurora tells us his restaurant never officially changed to an Epic Grill, so he's still serving burgers -- and the rest of the Fatburger menu -- under the chain's name, although this location of Fatburger doesn't appear anywhere on the corporate website.
But if you're craving Fatburger's particular brand of beef, that spot is likely your best bet if you're unwilling or unable to cross state lines.
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.