Umami Burger to open first location in Chicago

Cheeseburger Bureau Chief

Umami Burger, the popular California-based hamburger chain, will open its first Chicago location later this year.

The restaurant will be a 90-seater at 1480 N. Milwaukee Ave., next to the now-shuttered Covo Gyro Market in Wicker Park. The chain said this will be the first of several locations to open in the Chicago market.

As its name suggests, Umami Burger's modus operandi is overloading their burgers with umami, the Japanese-discovered taste sensation that roughly translates to "savory." If you've ever consumed hard cheeses, mushrooms or a beefy steak, you'll recognize that rich, full-palate, meaty mouth feel.

Umami Burger's flagship sandwich is a bombardment of glutamates: grilled shiitake mushrooms, roasted tomatoes, parmesan cheese crisp and ketchup loaded with more umami. Even the beef patties are splashed with a soy sauce-like marinade called Umami Master Sauce, which the chain sells in bottles.

If you can't wait to figure out what this umami burger business is all about, I'd suggest visiting BopNGrill in Rogers Park, which does a fine interpretation.
Twitter @pang

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