Bethany Clough

Who remembers this once-empty Burger King?

Flame It Burgers has taken over a Burger King that was empty for years on the Chestnut Diagonal.
Flame It Burgers has taken over a Burger King that was empty for years on the Chestnut Diagonal.

Does this Fresno building look familiar?

It used to be a Burger King at 4145 Chestnut Diagonal next to Blackbeards.

It has been empty for years, apart from a few Mexican restaurants that tried to make a go of it here, but they did not last. The first time I spotted it, it was an eyesore surrounded by trash.

Now it’s a head-turner that looks practically brand new. The restaurant has a new owner and a new life. Locally owned fast food restaurant Flame It Burgers has opened in the building.

We just did everything brand new.

Mohamed Fara, Flame It Burgers

If the name sounds familiar, it’s because there are a couple of restaurants with “Flame” in the name around, but this one isn’t related to any of them.

Mohamed Fara and his family own the restaurant, along with some apartment buildings. Fara’s family bought the building as an investment.

“It was vacant for a long time, and when I came in here to check it out, it was pretty bad,” he says.

The family did a ton of work on the building: New plumbing, new electrical, new bathrooms, etc.

As they were pumping money into it, they figured why not rebuild it exactly as they wanted and open their own restaurant there instead of renting it out?

So they did. Now Flame It welcomes customers with bright red and white checked floors and walls inside, as well as an indoor kids’ play area and a drive-thru.

As for the food, burgers are the star of the show here. They are charbroiled over a gas grill. The menu also includes a grilled chicken sandwich, a pastrami sandwich and veggie burgers. All the usual fried things are available, too, including fried zucchini. Ice cream, shakes and a couple of salads round out the menu.

Bethany Clough: 559-441-6431, @BethanyClough