Interview with Richard Warner
Owner of Bingo Burger
132 N. Tejon Street, Colorado Springs, CO 80903
Nothing beats a good burger. Mix that with our locally famous Pueblo Green Chiles and a boozy shake on the side, and culinary bliss is on its way! For the past couple of years, we’ve been bringing groups on our Original Colorado Springs Food Tour to Bingo Burger to experience their juicy patties, crisp sweet potato fries, and array of homemade sauces (our favorites are the Thai Chile Ketchup and Lemon Rosemary Aoili). Their first home is in Pueblo, but we visit their location catty-corner to Acacia Park in downtown Colorado Springs. Check them out, if only to see the cool vintage bingo sign hanging on the wall!
Read our interview with Richard Warner below to discover more juicy details!
What are your favorite menu items?
Naturally, we’re all pretty fond of our original Bingo Burger… the Pueblo chiles mixed in with the beef provide a flavor we’ve never experienced elsewhere!
Where did the name ‘Bingo Burger’ come from?
We always lean towards the fun and quirky in our businesses, so Bingo sounded good to us!
Are there any fun facts or secrets about the menu and/or how it was created?
The Bingo Burger was launched during Pueblo’s Annual Chile and Frijole Festival in 2007. I set up a grill in front of my wife’s Hopscotch Bakery and grilled hundreds of burgers for folks hungry for something different. I capitalized on the unique flavor of the locally-grown and roasted Pueblo chile and mixed them right into the beef before grilling. BINGO! The Bingo Burger was born. These burgers proved to be so popular that a brick and mortar shop opened its doors in 2010 in the heart of Pueblo’s Downtown District!
Tell us about some of your core values as a business owner?
Being an independent business in Colorado, we’re deeply invested in sourcing locally… from our burgers and buns to our Colorado craft beers. Additionally, our restaurants should provide a terrific and delicious experience for our guests. We want Bingo to be a place we’d like to eat at even if we didn’t own it!
How did you get started in the restaurant industry?
Bingo Burger is the culmination of both a lifelong dream and extremely hard work! My wife, Mary, and I (both 1995 Culinary Institute of America New York graduates) returned to Mary’s hometown of Pueblo, Colorado with a vision. Mary wanted a shop of her own that not only served handcrafted food, but also gracious service in a warm and fun atmosphere. Hopscotch Bakery was launched in 2005. Several years later, I then branched out with Bingo Burger as mentioned above!
If you were stranded on a desert island and could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what food would that be?
That’s too easy! A Bingo Burger contains all of the necessary ingredients and nutrition to sustain a marooned individual for several lifetimes!
We love that you put Pueblo green chiles in your burgers! Tell us a little more about this Southern Colorado favorite food.
Pueblo, Colorado sits smack-dab in the middle of Colorado’s high desert. Its climate is perfect for growing the namesake Pueblo Chile. Long hot days and an abundance of sunshine and cool nights result in a spicy, sweet and robust chile pepper. Pueblo Chiles, beloved by locals and gaining popularity nationwide, are what give the signature Bingo Burger its special quality… they’re mixed right in with choice Colorado ground beef!
We go to your downtown location on our food tours, but where are your other locations?
Right now we have the original Bingo Burger in downtown Pueblo, as well as our Tejon Street location in Springs.
What’s your plan for the future?
We’re not content with only two locations… as we continue to manage our growth, there will be more Bingos in the future as the appropriate venues present themselves!
Thanks Richard! If you’d like to check out Bingo Burger, take our Original Colorado Springs Food Tour on Friday afternoons!
Cheers, Your Rocky Mountain Food Tours Team