Burger 21 exterior
Burger 21 will be looking to expand and refresh its brand in 2016.

TAMPA, Fla.– Burger 21 opened its 21st restaurant in January, and has more than 20 franchised restaurants in development in 11 states. The company also announced the debut of its first hybrid free-standing restaurant this year. The company plans to open 10 additional restaurants in 2016 during the first quarter. Burger 21 also is developing its first airport locations in the newly renovated Tampa International Airport. The company’s Ocala, Fla. restaurant will be the first to feature a full-service bar.

Mark Johnston, founder and president of Burger 21, said opening the 21st restaurant in Orland Park, Illinois, marked a major milestone for the chain that started in 2010.

“In just five years, we’ve grown from a four-unit concept to a nationally recognized franchise with 21 open locations across eight states — a number that truly shows how far we’ve come,” Johnston said in a statement. “With extensive QSR experience, we’re confident the local franchisees in Orland Park will further position Burger 21 as an innovator in the “beyond the better burger” industry and remind consumers why our brand is different from the rest.”

Customers can select from 11 hand-crafted beef burgers made from fresh ground chuck or one of the 10 beef-alternative burgers made with sushi-grade Ahi tuna, shrimp, turkey, chicken, vegetables or black beans. Many of Burger 21’s craft burgers, shakes, fries and dipping sauces originally were created under the guidance of a classically trained chef.