A locally owned burger favorite has shuttered one of its two Colorado Springs locations.

Drifter's Hamburgers closed its restaurant this month at 1485 Jamboree Drive, near the Chapel Hills Mall on the city's north side. The location had been open since August 2012.

Owner Rich Beaven declined to comment on the closing. He continues to operate his original Drifter's location at 4455 Mark Dabling Blvd., near Garden of the Gods Road, which opened in 2008.

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Several restaurants and other businesses have been hit hard and closed since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in March, though it's unknown what effect, if any, the pandemic might have had on the north-side Drifter's location.

Drifter's has drawn many comparisons over the years to In-N-Out Burger, the California fast-food chain that has expanded to Colorado and will open its first Colorado Springs restaurant by year's end at InterQuest and Voyager parkways.

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Like In-N-Out, Drifter's menu focuses on burgers, fries and shakes; Beaven even has called his fare  "California-style hamburgers" and topped them with a Thousand Island-type dressing that is a reminder of In-N-Out. The Drifter's menu also features a chicken sandwich, breakfast sandwiches and burritos and a side salad, among other items.

Beaven has tried to make Drifter's a cut above other burger places, bringing in beef from Springs-based Callicrate Beef that's free of hormones and antibiotics and using hamburger buns without preservatives or GMOs, according to the Drifter's website.

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"We had the attention to detail in every step of the process; from the house-made hamburger sauce to the hand-leafed lettuce and the tomatoes that are sliced throughout the day to ensure freshness," the website says. 

Beaven, who once worked for In-N-Out while growing up in Southern California, has been a member of  the local restaurant scene since the early 1990s. He and a partner founded the old Classics Hamburgers in Colorado Springs; after his partner's death in 2002, Beaven sold that business and it closed a few years later.

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