Appetizers

‘Squeeze Inn’ is gone – but the burger remains

The “squeeze with cheese” is an iconic Sacramento burger that’s cooked by smothering it with cheese on the grill. The burger was created at the Sacramento restaurant formerly known as Squeeze Inn. It’s now called Squeeze Burger following a trademark issue.
The “squeeze with cheese” is an iconic Sacramento burger that’s cooked by smothering it with cheese on the grill. The burger was created at the Sacramento restaurant formerly known as Squeeze Inn. It’s now called Squeeze Burger following a trademark issue. rbyer@sacbee.com

Those in search of a classic “squeeze with cheese” burger might’ve noticed something amiss over the last few months. The name “Squeeze Inn” no longer marks the sign at its flagship location on Power Inn Road, and the moniker has also been removed from all but two of its franchised locations in Northern California.

Now, it’s “Squeeze Burger” for the iconic Sacramento eatery and its related restaurants.

The name change resulted from a trademark issue with the “Squeeze In” in Truckee. The Squeeze In had its name trademarked in 2007, and after the Truckee restaurant started a franchising program for other restaurants, the owner of Sacramento’s “Squeeze Inn,” Travis Hausauer, was asked to changed the name to prevent confusion and avoid legal issues.

Since the Sacramento “Squeeze Inn” name was never trademarked, Hausauer complied and “Squeeze Burger” was born.

“I like the (new) name better,” said Hausauer. “It’s self-explanatory. Locals knew what ‘Squeeze Inn’ was, but as we’re growing, some people don’t know what that is.”

Squeeze Burger licenses its name for other restaurants, including locations in Roseville and Stockton. Changing the signage to “Squeeze Burger” has been underway since November, and locations at the Sacramento International Airport and Tracy are in the process of adopting the new name. All other restaurants are now known as Squeeze Burger.

The restaurant’s “squeeze with cheese,” which includes a cheese skirt that overflows from the 1/3 pound burger patty, is considered one of Sacramento’s key exports to the world of comfort food. This mouthful of a burger was once featured on an episode of the Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” with host Guy Fieri dropping into the Power Inn Road location.

Apart from the new name, little else is changing. The menu is mostly remaining the same, and the “squeeze with cheese” will still be the star of the show at Squeeze Burger.

“There’s no way we’d change the ‘squeeze with cheese,’ ” said Hausauer. “We won’t mess with success.”

Squeeze Burgers, the hamburger chain featured on The Food Network has opened a restaurant in Sonora, Calif.

Chris Macias: 916-321-1253, @chris_macias

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