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Chipotle enters the burger scene

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Lucy Nicholson/Reuters/File

(Read caption) A Chipotle Mexican Grill sign is outside the restaurant in Los Angeles.

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Chipotle Mexican Grill will enter the burger market this fall with a limited-menu concept called Tasty Made, a name it had trademarked earlier this year. The company has made no secret of its interest in expanding its model beyond Mexican and pizza into burgers. The question was whether Chipotle’s food-safety problems that have depressed its sales would delay its burger venture. They will not, apparently.

In announcing its plans, Chipotle CEO Steve Ells said Tasty Made would feature “Responsibly Raised brand beef” free from antibiotics or added hormones, plus “shakes made with real ingredients” and “fresh made buns that are free of preservatives, dough conditioners and other  artificial ingredients.”

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Ells said of the limited menu that he believes “there’s great strength in that original fast-food model and wanted to create a restaurant built around that.” Ells worked with fine-dining Chef Nate Appleman, who has worked with Chipotle for several years, and David Chrisman, who serves as the chain’s training director.

The inaugural Tasty Made will open in Lancaster, Ohio, near Columbus.

This article first appeared at BurgerBusiness.