The former La Salsa building on North Wilmot Road and East Speedway will soon be home to a local purveyor of high-quality hamburgers.

Ben Rine, who co-owned and operated BrushFire BBQ for ten years, plans to launch Divine Bovine Burgers in the 2,000-square-foot space by the end of February.

Rine has been looking for a new opportunity in the food service industry since selling BrushFire's two locations more than a year ago.

“I took a year off because you only get one life and I wanted to spend time with my kids,” Rine said. “But we’ve all got bills to pay. I didn’t sell 25 BrushFires, and I’ve wanted a burger restaurant for a while.”

Rine said Divine Bovine will offer 15 different types of burgers, all made with “ridiculously high-end ingredients.”

Each burger patty will consist of a blend of “brisket, chuck and short rib that’s really, really naughty,” he said.

Rine’s favorite creation so far is the Funny Farm Hand, a burger topped with creamy peanut butter, homemade sweet-hot pickles, jalapeño raspberry jam, aged white cheddar and bacon.

Customers can swap out the restaurant’s burger blend for fresh, natural chicken, or bison from Adam's Natural Meats in Buckeye.

Sides will include homemade hush puppies, fried cheese and three-times-fried French fries.

“It took me a month-and-a-half to perfect the fries,” Rine said. “They have a really nice texture; nice and crispy on the outside and light and delicate on the inside.”

Besides living on the east side, Rine said his decision to open Divine Bovine at the old La Salsa, 1021 N. Wilmot Road, was a no-brainer.

“Everything about it worked,” he said. “The windows face the right way. It is on a nice busy road. When I heard it was available, I nabbed it up fast.”

Rine said the overall goal is to produce a higher quality hamburger for Tucson's increasingly evolving palates.

“Nowadays, most people are foodies,” he said. “We like to try. We like to taste. People are adventurous. I think I am playing into that by serving a slightly better product.”

Divine Bovine joins several restaurants that have already opened in 2019, including: 

Reporter

Gerald received his journalism degree from the University of Maryland. He has been with the Star for 16 years and has covered a variety of beats. Currently, he divides his time between the presentation desk and as a member of the digital team.