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Chipotle Hires Richard Blais to Spiff Up Its Burger Concept

The burrito chain is bringing in the big guns for Tasty Made

Chef Richard Blais Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

Chipotle’s bringing in the big guns for its budding burger concept, Tasty Made: Today the company announced it’s hiring chef and Top Chef alum Richard Blais to improve Tasty Made’s food and develop new menu items.

Blais has plenty of burger experience on his resume: He launched the Atlanta-based chain Flip Burger Boutique back in 2008, and since expanded it to Nashville and Birmingham. The chain has recently hit some rough patches though, closing multiple locations including the Nashville expansion.

Tasty Made currently has just one location, which opened in Lancaster, Ohio last fall serving a simple menu of burgers, fries, and shakes. It’s no wonder Chipotle CEO Steve Ells is bringing in some high-profile chef talent: The food hasn’t been particularly well-received by diners, who have declared it resoundingly “meh.”

Though Tasty Made started off touting its “responsibly raised” beef, it soon abandoned that promise and switched to cheaper, conventionally-raised meat after customers complained that menu prices were too high. Chipotle did say that it planned to revisit the idea of using higher quality ingredients once it had established the Tasty Made brand, though, and hiring Blais is likely a step in that direction.

Chef Richard Blais to Lead Tasty Made Burger Concept for Chipotle [Press Release]
Chipotle’s New Burger Concept, Tasty Made, Is Getting ‘Meh’ Reviews [E]