The Los Angeles equivalent of striking gold for any restaurant operator is creating a brand that celebrities love (and post about on social media). And in that sense, Monty’s Good Burger has struck gold with fans like Joaquin Phoenix, Kim Kardashian and Billie Eilish.
The brand was created four years ago by three partners who work for concert and music festival producer Goldenvoice: Lexie Jiaras, Nic Adler and Bill Fold.
Jiaras said they created Monty’s — named for her rescue “schnoodle” dog — because they missed the classic burger-and-fries experience of In-N-Out Burger. Though Monty’s will soon reach six units, all company owned, it’s still “a thing that we do after hours,” she said.
Originally, the partners did not consider national expansion, she noted. “But we definitely do now.” Current expansion is focused on California and perhaps Las Vegas.
Franchising, however, is not in the plans anytime soon, she said. The company hopes to grow with self-funding, but later may bring in “somebody who will take us to the next level to expand at a more rapid pace.”
Monty’s menu includes Impossible burgers ($15 for a double), Daring chicken-alternative sandwiches ($14) and tenders ($9) and Oatly-based shakes ($8.50), along with fries and tots. Merchandise is also a robust revenue generator, said Jiaras.
“We love people coming here and having the expectation of having a good burger and a good shake — nothing to do with being vegan — and just opening their eyes to what a vegan meal could be,” she said. “There’s definitely a whole undertone of education to this whole project that’s really inspiring to us.”
Listen to Jiaras’ take on the plant-based fast-food boom in LA and vote on LinkedIn or Instagram for which concept you think is going to be the first national plant-based concept.