BurgerIM offers countless customizations of classic burger

Despite the divisive chicken sandwich wars of 2019, you can't deny that Americans' love of burgers hasn't budged: after all, the average American consumes about 30 pounds of hamburgers each year.

Whether you indulge a few time times a week or just every once-in-a-while, you want a top-quality, crusty-on-the outside and juicy on-the-inside disc o' beef topped with classic or trendy ingredients worth your money and the valuable real estate in your belly.

Welcome to BurgerIM in Oak Brook.

Open since July, BurgerIM (the name is a play on the phrase "Burger I Am") is the first of its kind in Illinois, joining over 300 BurgerIM stores nationally. The first store debuted in California several years ago and the chain expanded rapidly. Its growth trajectory went national soon after, opening locations in Texas, Florida and the East Coast.

Co-owners Syed Shah and Amir Mirarefi were keen to introduce the business to Illinoisans, specifically in Oak Brook.

"Oak Brook is a wonderful suburb with hundreds of acres of open space, excellent sports facilities, world-class shopping, and an incredible range of employment opportunities," Shah explained. "We wanted to open our restaurant in a world-class area and Oak Brook was an obvious choice. We are so excited to be here."

What makes BurgerIM different from countless other burger joints? The business is known for its top quality customized gourmet burgers and an array of protein options from beef and chicken to lamb, fish and vegetarian. The choice of toppings is sweeping and there's also a selection of buns, including gluten-free numbers. Are you on the Keto or low carb diet? No problem - order your protein and toppings encased in fresh, crisp lettuce. All of BurgerIM's proteins are HALAL certified as well.

"One mathematician did a calculation and found that we offer over 40 million different combinations," Shah noted, "so there really is something for everyone at BurgerIM."

For classic burger fans, choose Angus or Dry Aged beef burgers. Like dry-aging a fine steak, Burger IM's dry-aged beef patties are aged for several weeks to allow enzymes naturally present in the meat to break down the muscle tissue resulting in a superior texture and flavor.

Some like it hot, so go for the Spanish Beef Burger with habanero aioli, grilled jalapeño, leaf lettuce and Pepper Jack cheese.

Return another day for a grilled or crispy chicken sandwich; a Greek lamb burger crowned with zippy tzatziki sauce, mixed

greens, shaved onions and Roma tomato. Health conscious diners will go for the Hawaiian salmon burger, featuring red cabbage slaw, pineapple, ginger vinaigrette and a veneer of barbecue glaze. Welcome vegetarians: there are also falafel burgers and plant-based patties with rousing toppings from avocado to sautéed mushrooms.

BurgerIM's "flights" of burgers (called the Duo and Trio) are the most fun, allowing hungry diners to taste a variety of juicy burgers.

"Duos and trios are unique to BurgerIM and is how it became famous," Shah said. "It's our mini-burger menu where guests can order a set of two or three mini burgers, each customized to their liking with different proteins and toppings."

There's also a Family Box that comes with eight mini-burgers, chicken wings, and two sides, as well as a Party Box of 16 miniburgers.

There are kids' meals, chicken wings, crispy chicken strips, classic sides, as well as sweet potato fries and "styled" fries with melty cheese and jalapeños. Choose a house or Caesar salad and add grilled or crispy chicken or Angus beef for a nice protein punch.

Quench the thirst with a huge selection of free style soft drinks; thick, creamy milkshakes; smoothies; kombucha; or water.

BurgerIM's process is fast-casual (order and food is brought to your table) but the food is definitely gourmet. Considering the premium product and extensive customization, prices at BurgerIM are extremely competitive. Diners who have tried the new Oak Brook spot are raving about outstanding, friendly service and white-glove level cleanliness.

Shah says the most exciting part of the venture is getting the opportunity to meet his guests.

"There is no better experience than to see our guests enjoy a delicious and hearty meal," he beamed. "We love and strongly believe in our product offerings and are excited to share it with our friends, neighbors, and guests."

Brian Hill/bhill@dailyherald.comHector Laporte, general manager at Burger IM in Oak Brook.
Brian Hill/bhill@dailyherald.comBurger IM in Oak Brook.
Brian Hill/bhill@dailyherald.comBurger IM in Oak Brook.
Brian Hill/bhill@dailyherald.comBurger IM in Oak Brook.
Brian Hill/bhill@dailyherald.comThe Spanish beef burger at Burger IM in Oak Brook.
Brian Hill/bhill@dailyherald.comA burger trio of Chrispy chicken, grilled chicken and angus beef, at Burger IM in Oak Brook.

Burger IM

<b>3041 Butterfield Road, Suite E111</b><b>Oak Brook, IL 60523</b><b>(630) 908-7742</b><b></b>Hours: Seven days a week 11 a.m.-9 p.m.

Burgers and other sandwiches: $8.99-$9.99; add fries and a drink for $3;

The Duo: $8.99; The Trio $11.99; Chicken wings: $7.99-$20.99; sides: $3.49-$4.29; full size salads: $7.99 with an upcharge for a protein addition; beverages: $2.79; milkshakes $5.29

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