Cult American burger chain Five Guys opens first Melbourne store in Southbank

It’s Melbourne’s turn for Five Guys fever, with the American burger joint planting its first flag in Victoria next week. A 79-seat restaurant will open in Southbank on August 8, where the red and white branding will match the red staircase at Queens Bridge.

Australia’s first two Five Guys stores, both of which have opened in Sydney in the past 12 months, drew long lines of people eager to sample their flavour, with brand manager Robby Andronikos saying some people had to wait up to four hours.

While Melbourne has no shortage of burger shops, not many offer the same level of individualism as Five Guys.

Five Guys’ Penrith store was the first Australian location and was soon followed by another in Sydney’s CBD. Photo: Delivered



A menu of stripped-down burgers and hot dogs is complemented by a huge array of toppings — 15 in all — that allow diners to create their own perfect burger. Or it could just be whatever feels right for them that day.

“We don’t dictate to them how to eat their burgers,” Andronikos says.

From hot sauce to onions (grilled or fresh), pickles (five to be exact) and even tomatoes, everything is optional. All the extras are “free” (read: built into the price of the basic burger) so whichever toppings you choose will cost the same as your partner’s order.

All the extras are “free”, so whatever toppings you choose will cost the same as your partner’s order.

The team calculated that this system means there are 250,000 burger variations on the menu.

The same make-it-yourself philosophy applies to milkshakes, which can be topped with chunks of banana, Oreo, or even bacon. BLTs, grilled cheese, and vegetarian sandwiches with grilled mushrooms and bell peppers make up the rest of the menu.

Five Guys claims the other point of difference is the freshness and old-fashioned attention to detail, whether it’s hand-cut potatoes or patties made fresh every day. They also claim that there are no freezers in their stores.

Founded in 1986, Five Guys began franchising in 2003. Local company Seagrass Hospitality, which also owns The Meat and Wine Co, Ribs & Burgers and The Butcher and the Farmer, is the master franchisee in Australia.

More stores in Melbourne and Sydney are on the way, and the next Melbourne location is likely to open early next year in a central, high-traffic area. Seagrass plans to open 20 Five Guys stores on the east coast before tackling the rest of the country and New Zealand.

Each burger has been deliberately kept simple so that diners can choose which of the 15 toppings to add.

Each burger has been deliberately kept simple so that diners can choose which of the 15 toppings to add. Photo: Delivered



Open from August 8, daily from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

3 Freshwater Place, Southbank, 03 9938 8805, fiveguys.com.au

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