The Story of Blake Chanslor & His LOTA Burger
The LOTA Burger was born on July 9th, 1952 on a simple grill in a small hamburger stand in Albuquerque, New Mexico. It was an immediate hit & the locals couldn't get enough. Blake Chanslor, the Founder & WWII Navy Veteran from Borger, Texas, knew he had something special so he opened another Blake's Lotaburger nearby (& then another & then another & then a few more). Now, over 60 years later (ugh, am i really THAT old?! don't remind me!), LOTA Burgers (& it's smaller twin, the ITSA Burger) are cooked-to-order using ONLY Premium Angus Beef at 80 Blake's locations across New Mexico, Texas & Arizona.
But what's a LOTA Burger without New Mexico Cuisine's defining ingredient - GREEN CHILE? When Blake noticed that some customers were bringing in their own Green Chiles to add to their (otherwise perfect) LOTA Burgers he knew what he had to do... steal their idea & serve the world's first Green Chile Cheeseburger (no assembly required)! In 2006, National Geographic named the Green Chile Cheese LOTA Burger, "The World's Best Green Chile Cheeseburger" (that makes it 'award-winning'!).
Being the capital B, 'Best', doesn't come easy but it does come with heat (i mean - like - REAL HEAT. not 'i'm calling it hot but it's really medium, but seriously it's barely mild'. more like, 'somebody get me some water ASAP, make that 2 waters... ice waters. scratch that get me a shake!'). First-timers might want to try theirs on the side, because these are 100% New Mexico Hatch Valley Grown Green Chiles, registered by the New Mexico Department of Agriculture & packed exclusively for Blake's Lotaburger (so it's kinda the real deal).
Blake's has become a crucial stop on the New Mexico Tourism Department's "Green Chile Cheeseburger Trail" & become so synonymous with New Mexico Culture that you can see wrappers, cups & locations filling the frames in AMC's mega-hit, 'Breaking Bad' (i think it goes without saying that the show doesn't accurately portray the warm, inviting beauty of the Land of Enchantment, but still, great show).