With more than 80 years in business, Lankford’s Grocery and Market has been a Houston institution, serving up some of the city’s beefiest burgers. Now, the iconic burger joint is opening a second location, and it’s getting innovative.
Lankford’s has incorporated a new self-serve tap wall system that will allow diners to serve and guide themselves through their drinking experience, with the option to sample beer, ciders, and wines from 20 taps. Each diner will be given a wristband, which uses wireless radio frequency identification technology to track their pours by the ounce, adding each to their tab.
Though the new tap system is a for-sure upgrade, the newest Lankford’s will still serve its full lineup of more than a dozen juicy burgers, including its decadent Grim burger, which is topped with macaroni and cheese, jalapeño, bacon, and a sunny side up egg. Hearty breakfast items, sandwiches, and a variety of sides, including its tater tots, onion rings, and fries will also be on order.
The burger joint’s legacy began in 1937, with its owners Aubrey and Nona Prior opening Lanford’s first as a mom-and-pop grocery store. The Priors’ daughter Eydie Lankford Prior later transformed the store into a full-service, burger-slinging restaurant, which has since been lauded by local publications and TV shows like Food Network’s Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives.
Now, couple Jessica and Paul Prior, the grandchildren and third generation of Priors, are pushing forward the Lankford legacy once again, bringing some additional technology and draft beer into the mix for the first time in its history.
Paul Prior said in a statement that he and his wife were inspired to incorporate the self-pour system after seeing a similar model in Florida. “(I) hadn’t seen anything like it in Houston. I liked the concept because it reduces keg waste and gives us the opportunity to highlight and collaborate with local breweries, and it just has a cool factor that people will love,” he said.
Darren Nicholson, the vice president of sales at iPourit, said in a statement that the self-pour model used in Lankford’s has helped around 300 businesses around the country, increasing alcohol sales by an average of nearly 40 percent while also minimizing waste and freeing up staff to focus on serving food.
Lankford’s Bellaire will open to the public on Monday, May 15, 2023. 5208 Bissonnet Street, Bellaire, 77401. The restaurant will be open on weekdays from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. on weekends.