Locals wishing to sink their teeth into the Culver’s signature butter burger no longer have to wait. The restaurant in Denison opened Monday morning becoming the newest location of the chain’s more than 700 stores.

The restaurant is at the entrance way of the budding Gateway Village development. This marks the 13th location of the chain in Texas that is known for its butter burger, cheese curds and frozen custard.

Owner Brad Bishop said he is excited to be in the Texoma region, and he chose to open his restaurant in Gateway Village because of its growth potential.

“It feels great,” Bishop said. “It’s been a journey getting here. To finally get open and get going feels great. We looked around several locations. We can see it’s going to be a growing, busy area that will be good for us.”

Bishop ‘s business had slight delays due to weather but nothing major, he said.

Bishop is fairly new to the restaurant business himself. While his family has been in the business since the 60s, he took a different career path and at first went into engineering.

Born in Wisconsin, he moved to Texas to find a career path different from his family’s restaurants. He returned to Wisconsin during his battle with leukemia before finding his way back to Texas to open the newest fast-food establishment in Denison.

Co-founder Craig Culver said he discovered butter burgers when his family owned a drive-in restaurant before starting the familiar Culver’s they have today. Culver had a friend that told him about a drive-in in Milwaukee, Wisconsin that had a place called the Milky Way. That restaurant sold a burger called the butter burger. Living in Wisconsin, the idea of a butter burger appealed to Culver.

When the first Culver’s opened in 1984, it opened with frozen custards and the butter burger as the main menu items.

“Our first year in business we almost didn’t survive,” Culver said. “We worked early in the morning and late at night seven days a week. Somehow we survived. Overtime, the butter burger has become iconic. The frozen custard has become iconic. The cheese curds have become iconic. If there are three things that are really iconic about Culvers. It’s our burgers, our frozen custard and the cheese curds.”

Culver’s philosophy for success deals with having the right people. He said that’s the key. He also said he is thankful for the location he has.

“I believe our butter burger, our frozen custard. Our food is terrific, but if it’s not served with a ‘please,’ a ‘thank you’ and a genuine smile, it’s just another place. It’s our people that make the difference,” Culver said.

Reporter Richard A. Todd can be reached by sending email to rtodd@heralddemocrat.com. He can also be reached on Facebook and Twitter @RichardAToddHD.