New Milton restaurant to fill former Burger King space

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Jim Dayton
Thursday, September 28, 2017

MILTON—A new family-style restaurant serving traditional American fare could open in Milton as soon as next week.

Tasty Bites is moving into the building at 740 E. St. Mary St. left vacant since a Burger King closed last summer.

When the Burger King shut its doors, some residents blamed it on the new Highway 26 bypass that reduced traffic outside the restaurant. Lower revenue could have been a factor, but it wasn't the only reason, City Administrator Al Hulick said.

Burger King's corporate team wanted the building owner to upgrade the facility. The owner was unwilling, so the franchise left, Hulick said.

Tasty Bites is not a chain restaurant. It will have a large menu and will focus on serving fresh, homemade food, operator Jesse Zekiri said.

Zekiri plans to offer daily specials, fish fries, freshly squeezed orange juice and a salad bar. The restaurant will be open throughout the day and employ six to eight workers, he said.

Zekiri believes Milton is a great place to run a restaurant. Learning about Burger King's fate raised concerns, but he plans to advertise and expects to gain support from residents, he said.

Hulick said locals will be more willing to support an independent business such as Tasty Bites than a chain restaurant.

“There's a large part of the population that that's the appeal, those are the types they seek out,” he said. “Hopefully, Tasty Bites is a continuation of that unique dining experience in Milton.”

Subway is the only national fast-food franchise in the city.

Zekiri said he was excited to open his restaurant, maybe as soon as next week.

“We'll hope for the best and hope to get the support from the town and provide the best service and food,” he said. “We'll try our best to make everyone happy.”

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