An imitation In-N-Out restaurant that opened in Mexico this summer has already given up the California lifestyle and changed its name, likely after facing legal action from the original burger chain.
No one said it would be easy to capture the In-N-Out style, a diner-esque slice of Americana that was cultivated when the burger chain first opened in Baldwin Park in 1948, but the owners of a restaurant in Culiacán, Mexico, tried their best.
In-I-Nout, as the imitation was originally known, not only cribbed In-N-Out's recipes but also furnished its dining room with red diner booths, a faux plant wall and a reversed In-N-Out logo. The restaurant garnered plenty of hype this month when it went viral, its existence first reported by SFGate.
The owners of the knockoff restaurant captured the attention of foodies across the internet as well as the legal team at In-N-Out proper. A spokesperson for In-N-Out declined to comment this month “due to ongoing litigation,” suggesting the owners of the knockoff restaurant were facing a legal dispute. In-N-Out declined to comment about the knockoff restaurant's name change for the same reason.
While the animal-style fries and double cheeseburgers seem to remain, In-I-Nout is dead and in its place is Sofi's Burger, according to a job posting on the restaurant's Facebook page and a rebranded Instagram account. Gone are the images of the In-I-Nout logo and the restaurant's dining room. The owners also removed an Instagram video showing people chomping down on burgers with Spanish text that read, “It’s not in California. It’s in Culiacán.”
The restaurant did not respond to requests for comments. The job posting said the restaurant is looking to hire cooks, servers and other staff. The advertisement says, "Solo personas con muchas ganas de trabajar" or that they want to hire people who really want to work.
Read more: In-N-Out bans employees from wearing masks
But the restaurant owners did leave up one of their earlier photos on their social media feed with a row of burgers next to a row of french fries covered in sauce.
One commenter wrote, "Papitas estilo Animal!" or animal-style French fries.
This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.