Tower Burger – Alpharetta Highway

Every Friday Roots in Alpharetta features an article on food and dining in a series called Foodie Friday. Today we feature an article from Mike Christensen.

Got you, didn’t I?  You thought that that mysterious burger place on Alpharetta Highway was finally open?

tower burger signHere at Roots, when a new restaurant starts a build out, we take notice and update our readers on the progress until the new place opens.  Then we visit a few times and we post a review.  That’s how it normally works but not with Tower Burger.

The old Sonic sat empty and run down for a long time.  Honestly, a lot of that section of Alpharetta/Roswell looked pretty sad.  The building stayed there, neglected until… wait! Signs of life appeared.  Everything was torn down except the main building.  Then, nothing.  Tumble weeds rolled through the parking lot.

Eventually we learned that a burger joint called Tower Burger was coming to that location.  Ok, another burger place, fine.  No big news.  The build out started, and stopped, and started, and stopped.  This continued for the next two years.

I was able to scope out some conceptual drawings online.  The place looked promising, with its second story deck serving beer and wine.  Anyone who drives Highway 9 daily has thrown at least a passing glance at the building as it now sits.  It looks done.  The sign is up, the landscaping done and parking lot paved.  So what’s the deal?

I’ve peeked in the windows and circled the building.  The last time I was there there were still unpacked boxes inside and no chairs and tables to be seen.  I can tell you this, the place is small.  In fact it’s tiny.  The downstairs patio couldn’t hold more than one or two tables comfortably.  It’s a cool looking place, but the function seems to be lacking.  And of course the second story deck will have a stunning view of J. Christopher’s.  If you crane your neck you might catch a glimpse of the Ferrari place up the street.  Granted, all these observations are just from my view in the parking lot.

I will be able to form more fair opinions once Tower Burger opens.  When will that be?  It’s anyone’s guess.  The mystery still remains.  Tower Burger has no social media presence, no website, no nothing.  It took an Indiana Jones-type effort to even get a name of someone who might be related somehow to the project.  Attempts to contact that person have been met with bupkis.  So keep your eyes peeled folks.  If nary a whiff of meat cooking escapes from that place, our readers will be the first to know.  After all, the most asked question from our readers is “Why do you hate Avalon?”.  But the second most asked question is, “What’s up with Tower Burger?”  You guys are in the dark as much as we are.  The one question I have is, when Tower Burger eventually does open, will anyone care?

16 Responses to “Tower Burger – Alpharetta Highway”

  1. A October 31, 2014 at 9:13 am #

    I agree that whole stretch of Highway 9 is very sorry to look at. Basically from about Maxwell Road (could even argue it start at Old Milton) all the way down to Mansell seems to be either one long strip mall or car dealer after car dealer. Besides J. Christopher’s and Tanaka Japanese restaurant, I don’t frequent any business along that long stretch of road.

    It’s a shame since it ties Roswell and Alpharetta (two affluent areas) together but just looks like a mediocre state road.

  2. Cool Papa Bell October 31, 2014 at 9:21 am #

    Let me start the third most asked question, which should always follow the second. Why care when there are so many great burger options? Among the many, Rhea’s is right there.

  3. Travis Allen October 31, 2014 at 9:26 am #

    Burger fixation aside, I think these guys are just too late to the game.

    If I’m heading in that direction, I’ll just drive on by and go to The Counter, Lucky’s Burger and Brew, or the recently opened Moxie Burger.

    Moxie Burger was great by the way. Depending on where you park, it isn’t really all that eye catching, and I wasn’t convinced they were actually open until we entered and found a packed room.

  4. Grimwinder October 31, 2014 at 11:05 am #

    Well, for what it’s worth, I noticed yesterday that they do have signs stuck out front advertising that they are now hiring cooks.

  5. David October 31, 2014 at 11:29 am #

    I saw Tower Burger had a “Opening Soon” sign among the “Now Hiring” signs.
    I don’t think many will care. People now have their favorite burger joints in the area. The Counter, Lucky’s, Scratch Fresh, 5 Guys…I could go on with the number of burger places.
    Tough competition.

  6. DoubleDach October 31, 2014 at 1:01 pm #

    Both Nosh and Peach & the Porkchop opened recently. Let’s all agree to have a go at one of those actually open restaurants rather than circling the lot of a closed burger place.

  7. Cool Papa Bell October 31, 2014 at 2:21 pm #

    DD is correct 100 percent. Peach & the Pork Chop is a gem. It’s right up there with Bite and Foundation Social Eatery as best restaurants of that genre to hit the area. Table & Nosh is a rebranding and rebirth of Phish Phood, which was good, but not in the same class and Peach &.

  8. A November 2, 2014 at 2:48 pm #

    Agree with Cool Papa Bell. No point in giving Tower Burger anymore digital ink when they’re not even open. Save your space for worthy places we can actually go to.

  9. JDart November 7, 2014 at 1:45 pm #

    I work right around the corner, and I’ve been asking the same questions for months. I care to the point of curiosity, but I’ve looked at the prices that the open restaurants are charging, so curiosity may be my only interest.

  10. Austin November 13, 2014 at 12:56 pm #

    Tower Burger opened today. Oddly they are also serving breakfast

  11. bill conklin November 13, 2014 at 3:12 pm #

    I guess today is the first day open. I peeked in. The place was very unorganized and felt totally unprepared for business. People were waiting for their to go food with glazed looks on their faces…..I guess it was a long wait for your food. And the sign out front says “Breakfast Lunch Dinnr” – - spelled just like that. Good luck to them, but they better get it together quickly or Alphretta-ians will slaughter the place.

  12. IPStevieb November 19, 2014 at 2:14 pm #

    Went there with my wife and 2 teenage kids on Saturday the 15th. Yep, just another burger place in Alpharetta/Roswell. Menu was somewhat limited, like the seating.
    Service was timely but un-enthusiastic. The menu was rife with spelling errors, and looking around the dining, um…’room’ while I ate gave me a chance to spot the various goofs that were made during construction. Like Bill said above, it was unorganized and felt half-assed.

    Additionally, the restaurant was not very warm inside, and as a result the sides of curly fries turned cold before I was even halfway done eating my burger.
    Perhaps the HVAC contractor was a fly-by-night operation, because the all the heat was going to the restrooms….they were toasty!

    I estimate the lifespan of this place to be 7 months.

  13. TV November 19, 2014 at 2:46 pm #

    All these comments are so disappointing. I live near this place and was desperately hoping something would take over the ugly abandoned Sonic (hell I wish it was SONIC). So when I saw this place being built (in 2012) I got excited. Now hearing about the poor speed and mediocre atmosphere and food I am sad. I still may try it out as I like to support my local places. I hope things improve once they get a foundation. Oh, and El Porton is great to the person who says there is nothing good on Hwy 9.

  14. S Lee Guy November 19, 2014 at 4:29 pm #

    Probably won’t do a full review of this joint. The burger, bun and frozen fries screamed Sysco food service special. It was not good and not terrible. Would compete on the lower-end of the burger wars along with places like Rheas and Scratch although with a price slightly higher. They are nowhere close to the gourmet burger purveyors we’re seeing these days.

    A for effort on the creative second generation buildout. Decor is alright but almost a bit kitchy at times. Ditch a few silly signs and replace with trendy exposed lightbulbs and the place might fit in at downtown Alpharetta.

    Go to check out the buildout, but don’t make a special trip.

  15. Nick November 22, 2014 at 12:39 pm #

    The place looks great from the outside. Hope they make changes to draw people in. I live close, so I do wish them success

  16. Tracy December 28, 2014 at 2:35 pm #

    We went to Tower Burger today and all 6 of us thought the burgers, club sandwich and cheese steak were delicious! The place was warm and inviting! Staff was very friendly! We would definately go back and might even make it one of our “regular” places!

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