Bun B (left) with Willie D. at Trill Burgers.
Bun B (left) with another Houston hip-hop legend Willie D. of the Geto Boyz at Trill Burgers on June 1 during a friends and family gathering just days before the public soft opening. Credit: Mark Champion

Trill Burgers, Houston’s acclaimed homegrown smashburger concept from legendary rapper Bun B, is now officially open for business.

The brand’s first brick-and-mortar location at 3607 S. Shepherd Drive and Richmond Avenue, made way for customers who filled the place to its 3,296-square-foot capacity on June 7, 2023.

“It’s been a dream for us, and it’s actually coming true,” Bun B said. “It’s been our sole goal to open up an establishment where we can serve you guys Trill Burgers consistently at a high level on a daily basis. And now we’re ready to do it. We are now officially open for business, ready to serve you.”

Unfortunately, the overflow crowd present at the opening and those sure to make their way to Bun B’s spot will eventually have to learn a new address for the rapper’s establishment, as the current location is serving as an extended pop-up location for six months while Trill Burgers searches for a permanent Houston area home.

This “soft opening” will operate from 11 a.m.–9 p.m. seven days a week, with additional hours to be announced for those hard-core Trill Burger-ites.

Trill Burgers became a certified hit immediately in 2021 via pop-ups and blew up in popularity with appearances at the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo and music festivals across the United States, including Coachella.

The June 7 opening featured the same signature items from its pop-ups and events since its inception in 2021 – the OG Burger with two smashed all-beef patties, Trill Sauce, pickles, caramelized onions and American cheese on a potato roll bun; Vegan OG Burger with vegan cheese and vegan mayonnaise; and seasoned fries.

The new storefront also will offer triple and single-patty options: the Triple OG, Triple Vegan OG and Baby G and Vegan Baby G kids meals. Additional menu items are in the works from chef partners Mike Pham and Fernando Valladares, to be introduced at Trill Burgers’ grand opening in the coming weeks.

The brick-and-mortar location is cashless and currently offers dine-in and walk-up ordering only, with seating for 125 guests. Drive-thru service will open soon. No online or phone ordering is available, and Trill Burgers is not affiliated with any third-party delivery services or apps.

But none of that affected those who were in the building on June 7, including Chef Courtney Lindsay and his wife Chasitie, vegan owners of Mo’ Better Brews (Instagram: mobetterbrewshtx).

“We had to come and check out a H-Town legend, and when we found out it had a vegan option, that made it even more of a thing for us to come out and see,” Chef Courtney said.

“It was so good,” Chasitie added.

“The burger was good, the onions were great and sweet. (Chasitie) ordered me the Triple OG which was amazing. The bread was good. All the quality was great,” the chef added.

“When I pulled up, I was a little bit intimidated by the line, but I was surprised to see that it was moving quickly, which I appreciated. They have a pretty decent streamline process. I think they’re going to tighten it up over time. But overall, the customer service, we got checked on multiple times. Even Bun B came over to the table and asked us how everything was. So, I give it five [out of five] stars,” Chasitie said.

Angelica Lugo and Deeo Franklin tried to experience Trill Burgers in February/March at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, but said the lines were too long.

“But it was well worth the wait,” Lugo said. “We’ll definitely be back, for sure.”

“Queenie (Bun B’s wife) and Bun B were there, and they were very welcoming, hospitable, down-to-earth. We got pictures. It was great,” she added.

Zeina Hussein, a Trill Burger veteran, who has had the vegan and regular burgers and proclaims them as “definitely delicious,” was pumped for the opening.

“I am a big fan; an addict, if you will,” she said. “I had it at the rodeo the last two years. The last time I had it was in March, and I cannot wait to try it again.”

Desmond Hamilton said he had to be at the opening to support Bun B.

“I mean, it’s Bun B, man. Everything he does for the city, everything he does for people in general, and me coming from southeast Texas, coming from Beaumont, Port Arthur connection, I’m always going to support Bun at whatever he does,” Hamilton said.

Damion Wiltz was present for that taste.

“It was a lot of people, long line, but well worth the wait. If you ain’t had the Trill Burgers you need to come get that taste. Know what I’m talkin’ ‘bout. And it’s an everlasting taste. Trill for real, man,” Wiltz said.

When asked about the long lines, he responded, “They say patience is a virtue… (my meal) was scrumptious, delicious. It’s a taste that’ll last forever, man.”

Bun B offered an invitation and a caution to future customers.

“Today is the soft opening. We’re still not 100% ready. We’ve still got to finish the drive-thru. But, we’re ready to serve people, so people can come up here, find somewhere to park. Be very careful about parking at other establishments, because you will get towed. If you’re not parked on Trill Burgers’ property, I can’t do anything about what happens…but we’re open for business and ready to serve the city,” Bun B. said.

I'm originally from Cincinnati. I'm a husband and father to six children. I'm an associate pastor for the Shrine of Black Madonna (Houston). I am a lecturer (adjunct professor) in the University of Houston...