I attempted the burger at Mark Wahlberg’s household chain, and now I perceive why followers cannot get sufficient of the restaurant

Mark Wahlberg (proper) and two of his brothers opened up the Wahlburgers chain.Rachel Askinasi/Insider and SOPA Pictures/Contributor/Getty Pictures

  • Actor Mark Wahlberg and two of his brothers opened Wahlburgers in 2011.

  • On a latest highway journey by way of Atlanta, I lastly bought to strive it out for myself.

  • I assumed the meals was spectacular, however the decor felt gimmicky.

Donnie, Paul, and Mark Wahlberg

Donnie (left), Paul (heart), and Mark Wahlberg (proper).Mireya Acierto/Contributor/Getty Pictures


On a latest highway journey ending in Atlanta, I bought to check out the chain for myself.


I visited the Atlanta location on a latest journey.Rachel Askinasi/Insider

On account of the present and documentary, I had been listening to about this household idea for some time, however I had by no means been in a position to strive it earlier than my highway journey by way of Charleston, South Carolina; Savannah, Georgia; and Atlanta.

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Once I arrived in my closing vacation spot metropolis, I noticed that there was a Wahlburgers location only a block from my lodge. It was too shut for me to not give it a strive, so on the finish of a busy day, I walked over to the bright-green signal able to eat.

The very first thing I observed about this restaurant was the in-your-face method to branding.


The emblem was all over the place.Rachel Askinasi/Insider

From household images on the partitions to merchandise arrange on the entrance, I knew I used to be participating in one thing that was greater than only a humble eatery.

The brilliant-green coloration scheme and burger posters have been paying homage to Shake Shack, however the Wahlburgers “W” brand was deliberately plastered on each serviette, on the partitions, and on the menus.

The workforce additionally discovered methods to work “Wahl” into totally different phrases, like “Wahlbrewski” for a beer commercial and “Wahlgear” for the merch.

Along with using their title, the Wahlberg household was, nicely, all over the place.


I observed that the model leaned into its well-known founders fairly closely.Rachel Askinasi/Insider

There have been images of the three males each with and with out their mom, a seemingly random “The Gambler” film poster with simply Mark within the picture, and their names have been used all through the menu to point which meal every brother would select.

Should you needed to, you might eat similar to Mark by ordering the Unattainable burger. Whereas I did need the total movie-star expertise, I am a meat-eater and was there to strive the meat burger. So I went with Paul’s alternative: The Our Burger.

Whereas the restaurant appeared a bit gimmicky, the meals was something however that.


The meals I attempted was scrumptious.Rachel Askinasi/Insider

I ordered the traditional burger on the menu, which price $11.95 and included a beef patty, American cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion, pickles, and Wahl Sauce (the chain’s model of fast-food-classic pink sauce typically referred to as particular sauce).

As quickly as I bit into the burger, I observed how juicy and flavorful the patty was. I am a pickle lover myself, so I appreciated the thick-cut discs that have been heavy on the dill taste. There was a single slice of tomato on my burger, however it was simply thick sufficient to supply each taste and texture.

Whereas I assumed the cheese was properly melted, it did not give a satisfying stringy pull the best way my regular 5 Guys burger does.

I assumed there was room for enchancment when it got here to lettuce — the greens on my burger have been limp and barely soggy.

A standout function for this burger was the bun.


The overly-buttered bun saved it from getting soggy.Rachel Askinasi/Insider

The bread used for this sandwich was fluffy and had a considerably sturdy outer shell that did not break aside underneath the load of my grip.

However equally as spectacular was the within floor, which was soaked in butter.

Once I lower my burger in half, I noticed the almost 1/4-inch thick layer of yellow that had seeped up into the spongy bun. It was a layer of butter that was used to assist grill the bread and create a type of seal to maintain the burger and topping juices between the bun halves fairly than inside them. It labored, and my bun by no means bought soggy.

My burger got here with fries, which have been good however not superb, in my view.


I assumed the french fries have been respectable however not tremendous flavorful.Rachel Askinasi/Insider

Wahlburgers serves up traditional shoestring-style fries that I assumed have been completely fantastic. They’d a slight crunch exterior and have been principally mushy inside. Whereas the feel was good, the flavour was on the tasteless aspect. The potatoes have been paying homage to Wendy’s when it got here to texture and Burger King’s when it comes to taste.

In the end, I wasn’t compelled to eat each final one like I sometimes am.

Along with the nice meals, I appreciated that the restaurant was arrange with two consuming sections providing totally different atmospheres.


I sat on the bar with just a few different diners.Rachel Askinasi/Insider

Half the restaurant regarded like a daily fast-food-meets-casual-dining eatery whereas the opposite half featured a fully-stocked, sq. bar and high-top tables.

I selected to sit down on the bar and order a beer as a result of that is the place the opposite diners have been. It appeared just like the adults’ space whereas the decrease seating regarded like a kid-friendly part.

The outcome was an area that regarded like a mashup of Shake Shack and an airport sports activities bar.

After tasting the meals and absorbing the surroundings, I perceive why somebody would select these burgers over one other strong contender: they’re an enormous Wahlberg fan.


The brothers gave the impression to be the restaurant model’s cornerstone.Rachel Askinasi/Insider

This meal did not depart me feeling greasy. I did not stroll away overly stuffed or nonetheless hungry. I used to be happy and shortly honored my want for a burger and beer.

Would I stroll right into a Wahlburgers as an alternative of McDonald’s? Certain. However would I stroll right into a Wahlburgers as an alternative of a bar? Most likely not except I used to be an enormous fan of Mark.

The meals was good and workers have been useful and pleasant, however biting right into a burger with the three Wahlberg brothers looking at me from their many perches on the wall was a bit unsettling. I assumed it felt extra like an attraction at a celebrity-themed amusement park than a restaurant and bar.

However hey, if eating amongst your on-screen or on-stage heroes is up your alley, have at it!

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