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Sep 1, 2009 09:31 AM

Does Anyone Know If Flippin' Burgers in Newton Has Definitely Closed?

I know there was some talk about it maybe having renovations done or their possibly being on vacation. Anyone been by the place of late?

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  1. Drove past there tonight and saw a family that looked like it had just taken over the space. They were not open and the family looked like they were showing their friends or family the space.

    1. I live nearby and will look into this. I got burgers there about once a month, there always seemed to be a crowd of high schoolers whenever I went (maybe it was the boys as most of the local teenage girls seem to go to Pie Bakery).

      1. Renovations are definitely underway. I've seen people working in there every day.

        3 Replies
        1. re: Velda Mae

          I walked by today, there is a sign by the door saying that they are just renovating and will re-open soon. Good news!

          1. re: steinpilz

            Sign's still up. They've done some cleanup inside -- new trim, a lick of paint -- nothing major that I can see, but definitely a little sprucing up. There's a drawing of a burger on the sign so presumably they're remaining a burger joint, but I wonder if there wasn't a sale? TBD, I suppose.

        2. Definitely.

          At least in its previous incarnation.

          Now Lee's Burgers (Lee's Place Burgers, maybe? The "place" is very, very small), opening soon. Presumably new owners, though I couldn't say for sure. Certainly looks like a family operation. They were all in there tonight (Friday) at 11:00, working on the place. No menu posted, but the painted window mentions burgers, subs and a number of other things I don't recall at the moment. It's obviously going to be a more diverse menu. No opening date posted other than "soon".

          1. Drove by tonight and Lee's appeared to be open. I regretted just having had a not-so-great meal at Johnny's Luncheonette; I would've tried Lee's had I known it was open.

            15 Replies
            1. re: Blumie

              Has anyone been yet? I was just reading about the transferring of the victualler license from Flippin' Burgers to Lee's Place (exciting reading, let me tell you, ZZZZZZ).

              1. re: hiddenboston

                I hope the burgers are still good. I've emailed the owner a few times, and yes, it is the same owner as before, just not sure if it's going to be the same product.

                1. re: rchudy

                  I know from your blog that you were a fan of flippin burgers. Any idea why they would close and remodel/retool so soon after opening?

                  1. re: Blumie

                    Maybe its the lawyer in me but just about every time I see an establishment close and then re-open with the same ownership and concept but a different name I can't help but assume that there were financial issues which resulted in the formation of a new corporate entity that is not responsible for the debts of the former corporate entity.

                    1. re: Gordough

                      Well, even if that's true, I don't view that as something to hold against the place. If they failed financially the first time, there's no reason they shouldn't be given another shot. Sure, some vendors get hurt when a restaurant fails, but that's usually due to a business failing on the owners' part, not a moral failing. There is no shortage of stories about successful entrepreneurs who had failed in earlier attempts.

                      1. re: Blumie

                        I wasn't holding anything against this place. I was merely speculating as to why they closed, made very minor renovations, kept the same exact concept, and then re-opened using a different name.

                  2. re: rchudy

                    It's not the same owner. My kids went there yesterday and the food is not the same and the burgers are not the same. The special sauce is no longer. The man that used to make the burgers now serves soup at the soup factory on Needham street.

                    1. re: macadamianut

                      when I emailed them a couple months ago, they said it was at least one of the same owners. I'll have to check it out again.

                      1. re: rchudy

                        Presumably it doesn't matter as much as the quality of the product they are serving. Anyone have anything to report about that yet?

                        1. re: Blumie

                          Just wrote a little piece on the place. They'll be featuring burgers (of course), but will also have subs and sandwiches, hot dogs, chicken wings, and a few other items. Everything looks pretty reasonably priced, with burgers starting at $4.50.

                          1. re: hiddenboston

                            While I am not a huge fan of Bill's Pizzeria down the block, I think they have the subs/sandwiches etc. thing covered for Newton Centre. I don't think there is enough of a market for sub shop style sandwiches in this neighborhood to support this place. I am keeping my fingers cross but expect this place to reach a similar fate as Flippin' Burgers.

                            1. re: Gordough

                              If their subs are better than Bill's (which, assuming they haven't changed in the last 20 years, are standard insert-name-of-town-house-of-pizza subs), why couldn't it win over some business?

                              1. re: Blumie

                                Here is why:

                                1. cursed location (you really have to be looking for it to find it as opposed to Bill's prominent Beacon St locale)

                                2. Bills has been around forever and most non-chowhound folks gravitated towards establishments they are familiar with.

                                3. Bills has plenty of seating. Lee's is the total opposite which means all they can hope for is some take out business. You would be surprised to see how many people dine it at Bills since the renovation/expansion a few years ago. Lots of soccer/little league type moms feeding their kids dinner.

                                1. re: Gordough

                                  All excellent points. All reasons why Bill's has been around serving just-ok food since the beginning of time.

                                  1. re: Blumie

                                    totally agree with everything you guys are saying.