Burger restaurateur Mark Wahlberg and brothers Donnie and Paul Wahlberg have been busily expanding their chain of Wahlburgers fast-food restaurants, founded in Massachusetts in 2011. Their latest location is now open in Palo Alto (185 University Avenue) in what was formerly an outpost of Sam’s Chowder House from Half Moon Bay. And it could be just the beginning: As of last spring, seven more Wahlburgers were on their way to the Bay Area.
Wahlburgers positions itself a cut above mega fast-food chains in quality and pricing, and serves burgers (with “Paul’s signature wahl sauce") for around $10 each. Paul is the chef of the bunch, while Donnie will be known to most as a founding member of the band New Kids on the Block. Mark “Marky Mark” Wahlberg, meanwhile, is a well-known polymath: Actor/model/rapper and felon with a troubling past. At one point, he sought pardon for his teenage crimes in order to receive a concessionaire's license for Wahlburgers. What a guy.
Besides food, Wahlburgers also serves wine and beer — Wahlbrewskis, to be exact, a pale ale brewed for the business by Harpoon Brewing. And for a double treat, Wahlburgers serves boozy adult milkshakes. But since the Wahlberg clan hails from Dorchester, the restaurants refer to these as “frappes,” a provincial Massachusetts term meaning “we can’t pronounce the word milkshake.”
The new burger spot is now open sporadically while it trains employees, with regular hours coming soon.