Elevation Burger Opens in Bangor

Elevation Burger now open in Bangor Maine On the metal tray, atop a brown paper liner, sat the towering, juicy burger. A soft bun, lettuce and 10 patties comprised the ultimate Katahdin Burger, the first ordered at the newly opened Elevation Burger at 461 Stillwater Ave. in Bangor. The smiling, bearded customer Tim Theriault surveyed his order, eliciting a single syllable from while contemplating how best to bite into it: “Wow.”

Nearby employees of the restaurant snapped photos of the creation before he dug in. The largest of burgers available at the fast-casual restaurant that prides itself on using good ingredients like organic grass-fed beef and organic cage-free chicken, it was an enormous novelty.

Theriault’s verdict? Just eat it patty by patty.

Elevation Burger served customers at a new Bangor location on Stillwater Avenue for its second day open on Monday. Micky Bedell | BDN

Elevation Burger served customers at a new Bangor location on Stillwater Avenue for its second day open on Monday. Micky Bedell | BDN

Just opened on Sunday, April 10, Elevation Burger’s recently renovated space near Hobby Lobby and Buffalo Wild Wings has a modern-industrial look that’s both sleek and inviting. With a bright blue word wall on one side and large windows, it’s an airy space. And it’s one that’s seen a steady stream of patrons over the last two days since opening, said assistant manager Ronald Spencer, a Chicago native who went to school in Presque Isle before moving to the Bangor area.

He estimated about 300 to 400 people dropped in for lunch on Sunday — an impressive number since Elevation Burger’s Bangor location isn’t on social media yet and relied on word-of-mouth (and seeing the sign from the highway) to draw people in.

“Most people say they saw the sign off the highway,” Spencer said, adding that for many it was their first time eating at any Elevation Burger.

Elevation Burger served customers at a new Bangor location on Stillwater Avenue for its second day open on Monday. Micky Bedell | BDN

Elevation Burger served customers at a new Bangor location on Stillwater Avenue for its second day open on Monday. Micky Bedell | BDN

With tables mostly filled at lunchtime Monday, and a small line, it seems the quiet opening strategy suits the burger joint just fine.

Nonetheless, Spencer said that the restaurant will have social media channels to follow soon.

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An Elevation Burger employee pins up the next order at the new Bangor location on Stillwater Avenue for its second day open on Monday. Micky Bedell | BDN

But what about the food? Don’t worry: It’s not all gigantic burgers. Most sandwich offerings at Elevation Burger come with a more manageable one to two patties. There are both vegetarian and vegan burger options as well, in addition to chicken, grilled cheese, BLTs, salads, fries and super-thick milkshakes.

A BBQ Bacon Burger awaits its top bun at Elevation Burger's new Bangor location on Stillwater Avenue for during its second day open on Monday. Micky Bedell | BDN

A BBQ Bacon Burger awaits its top bun at Elevation Burger’s new Bangor location on Stillwater Avenue for during its second day open on Monday. Micky Bedell | BDN

There’s at least 15 options for toppings, ranging from cheeses like cheddar and Swiss, to sauces like Elevation sauce, creamy sriracha and (my personal favorite) hot pepper relish. Raw onions, caramelized onions, lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, bacon … there’s so many different ways to top your burger.

And if you go, try the fries. The thinner fries have a delightfully crispy outside with a soft inside. They aren’t too salty, but are nicely seasoned nonetheless.

Have you tried Elevation Burger yet? What did you think?

Sarah Walker Caron

About Sarah Walker Caron

Sarah Walker Caron is senior features editor for the Bangor Daily News, and resident cook. She writes a cooking column, Maine Course, and is also author of "Grains as Mains: Modern Recipes Using Ancient Grains." Her recipes have appeared in the BDN, Betty Crocker publications, Glamour.com and more.