In Choi’s trademark renegade style, LocoL’s bucking fast-food industry norms. For starters, the restaurant thumbs its nose to the frozen, chemically engineered products that McDonald’s and Burger King have relied on in their quest for world domination. Choi and Patterson insist on cooking everything from scratch, without preservatives. And, instead of bulk-buying discounted ingredients, LocoL sources its meat and veggies identically to Choi’s other upscale eateries. “[The] supply chain will be something we have to deal with later as we grow," he told us on opening day. But for right now, it’s working.
To keep costs down, the restaurant’s burgers and chicken nuggets are mixed with grains like fermented bulgur wheat -- they’re about 70% and 50% meat, respectively. Larger fast-food chains have been doing this for decades, but usually using highly processed fillers. Grain- and vegetable-heavy options include red miso tofu stew and a veggie burger, which was surprisingly popular on opening day.