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The bus is in the building as famed food truck preps first permanent location

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Bernie's Burger Bus bus being installed at Bellaire restaurant March 2014
Workers used a crane to install a bus inside the new Bernie's brick and mortar. Bernie's Burger Bus/Instagram
Bernie's Burger Bus bus for restaurant March 2014
Then they used a dolly to wheel it into position.  Bernie's Burger Bus/Instagram
Bernie's Burger Bus old bus moved into new restaurant place March 2014
Now the final work will be done to connect it to a vent.  Bernie's Burger Bus/Instagram
Justin of Bernie's Burger Bus handing out a burger from food truck
In the meantime, owner Justin Turner is testing recipes.  Bernie's Burger Bus/Facebook
Bernie's Burger Bus bus being installed at Bellaire restaurant March 2014
Bernie's Burger Bus bus for restaurant March 2014
Bernie's Burger Bus old bus moved into new restaurant place March 2014
Justin of Bernie's Burger Bus handing out a burger from food truck
Bernie's Burger Bus Bellaire
Get Directions - 5407 Bellaire Blvd Bellaire

Bernie's Burger Bus made an important step towards opening its brick-and-mortar location in Bellaire when a crew of workmen delivered the cut-up bus that will house the restaurant's kitchen. 

"It's definitely inside the building," owner Justin Turner tells CultureMap. "Now we're trying to figure out what to do," he adds with a laugh. Turner reports that when he visited the restaurant on Wednesday, the crew had begun to cut the floor out of the bus. Then they'll position it in the dining room and secure it in place. 

The final construction tasks of finishing the store front, bar front and replacing the wall that was knocked down to make way for the bus will finish this week. Equipment arrives next week. The space already has data lines, its POS system and the lines for the Maine Root sodas installed. 

"Things are going to move very fast. You're going to see a dramatic change," Turner says. 

If things stay on course, Turner hopes to begin a very quiet soft opening around April 21 ahead of a grand opening May 1. He's hoping to book dinners at his chef's table, a large butcher block that will be set inside the kitchen, starting in June.

In addition to the permanent restaurant, Bernies will continue to operate three food trucks around the Houston area.

Diners are already anticipating the opportunity to see what Turner does when he's freed from having to serve dishes on a bun. "I already have a party booked for September. They want seven courses," he says. 

In the meantime, Turner is testing recipes for the house-spun ice cream and new cocktail menu. "I've got a green Bloody Mary made with tomatillos and house-smoked vodka that might be our signature cocktail," he reports. 

How will that pair with the new lamb patty Turner will also introduce at the new location? The proof will be in the eating. 

Watch the videos of the bus's installation below:

 

 

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