After announcing that they expect to be open by fall of this year, the operators behind the 11-acre retail complex at the southeast corner of Pacific Coast Highway and Second Street have confirmed that East Coast staple Shake Shack will be opening its first Long Beach location at their development.
Starting off as a self-proclaimed “roadside burger stand” in Madison Square Park in New York City—it’s easy to forgive them for Columbus-ing In-N-Out’s long-standing tradition and attempting to appropriate In-N-Out some 60 years after it first opened Baldwin Park—it wasn’t until 2004 that Shake Shack moved from a summertime-only stand to full-fledged restaurant chain.
It opened its first California location in West Hollywood to much anticipation: Much like the arrival of Five Guys, Shake Shack blew up quickly but is now just another option should people not want to wait in the car line at In-N-Out or hang out in Boystown on foot, where both Five Guys and Shake Shack are within walking distance from the bars.
Since then it has expanded to multiple locations, including two in San Diego. Even Costco attempted to mimic the burger, testing it in SoCal markets before finally abandoning it after a lack of interest from its patrons.
For their first Long Beach location, they’ll be directly kitty-corner to—yup, you called it—In-N-Out.
That being said, there are a few reasons Shake Shack is worth a visit: Not only are the burgers decent and have a variety that distinguishes it from In-N-Out (including bacon-cheese fries and hot dogs) but it offers beer, which is an offering that the John 3:16-on-the-bottom-of-their-cups In-N-Out will likely never, ever remotely offer—on top of the fact that its menu hasn’t changed in any major way since it opened in 1948.
CenterCal Properties, the owner of the Alamitos Bay retail complex, will have around 60 tenants when complete but for now has confirmed, outside its anchor Whole Foods store and the aforementioned In-N-Out, a few more tenants, including two restaurants, two women’s clothing stores, two salon/spa spaces, and a fitness studio.