In-N-Out, a staunchly West Coast fast-food burger chain with a fervent cult following, is finally expanding east of the Mississippi River.
The California chain is opening its first territory office for the Eastern U.S. in Franklin, Tennessee, just outside of Nashville. The 100,000-square-foot building will house support staff like human resources and information technology needed to run its restaurants. It's the first time the 385-location chain has planned locations outside of California, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, Texas, Oregon, Colorado, and soon, Idaho.
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But to anyone who's drooling over the thought of finally getting your hands on a double-double animal style, don't get too excited just yet. Restaurants won't open in Tennessee until 2026, which makes for three long years.
First opened in 1948, In-N-Out has long vowed to only open in areas where it can control the quality of its food and that means tightly controlling its distribution channels. In-N-Out opens locations only within 300 miles of a meat distribution center because the beef in its burgers is never frozen. Nevertheless, when its Tennessee restaurants open in a few years, plans call for them to be served by an existing meat production facility in Lancaster, Texas, for the foreseeable future.
Lynsi Snyder, In-N-Out's owner and granddaughter of the founders, previously said that the chain would not expand eastward to the keep its corporate-owned restaurants' unique, destination-worthy spots that aren't on every corner. But she's since changed her tune.
"We are very excited to provide Tennesseans with our quality burgers, fries and shakes,” she said in a news release announcing the expansion. "I have no doubt that my grandparents, dad and uncle would be proud of this decision to grow our Associate family and serve even more amazing customers beginning in Nashville and the surrounding areas."