Photography by Kathy Tran.

The inside of BrickHouse Burgers & Shakes is filled with murals of the New York skyline, the Statue of Liberty and Notorious B.I.G., tributes to the owners’ home.

Co-owners James Richardson and Dudley Dort are cousins from Brooklyn, but it hasn’t taken long for them to embrace Lake Highlands’ neighborhood feel.

“Lake Highlands is really family-driven, everybody knows you. It’s like a small town in a big city,” Richardson says. “We just got attached to it because everyone that walks in here, they give you a little piece of Lake Highlands. They let you know the history behind it.”

Richardson has seven years of restaurant industry experience, and Dort received his degree in business administration. They wanted to combine their knowledge in a restaurant, but it wasn’t easy in the booming neighborhoods of Brooklyn.

Over the course of 18 months, they were denied leases at three locations. Without the capital and experience, most landlords wouldn’t give them a chance.

Not wanting to give up on their shared dream of owning a restaurant, they turned their sights to Texas.

“When you go into business, you’re not just trying to help yourself and your family, you’re actually trying to help the community, drive the community up,” Richardson says. “We didn’t know that.”

Working with the Lake Highlands Public Improvement District, BrickHouse has been involved with events like Sundays in the Park, teacher appreciation week and spirit nights. They even have a Go Wildcats Burger that’s served with avocado, pepper jack cheese and “happiness.”

DID YOU KNOW?

Owners of BrickHouse Burgers & Shakes have gone to employees’ high school graduations to show support.

Other burger favorites include the Brunch Burger with applewood smoked bacon, cheddar cheese and homemade hash topped with a fried egg. The Sweet Onion Shroom Burger comes with melted swiss cheese, caramelized onion and sautéed mushrooms.

If you’re looking for a snack, the Fry Trio has French fries, onion rings and mozzarella sticks. The Loaded Cheese Fries serve a “whole lotta” shredded cheddar, bacon, jalapeños and ranch.

However, the crème de la crème at BrickHouse are the mega shakes. The Cookies ’n’ cream and Reese’s peanut butter shakes have sweets along the rim and are topped with whipped cream, candy and cookies.

BrickHouse Burgers & Shakes

9090 Skillman St., Suite 174A

Hours:

Monday-Saturday,

11 a.m. to  9 p.m.

Sunday,

Closed

brickhouseburger.com