Nothing but raves, indeed. Well, go into any Five Guys* and the walls are covered with oil resistant laminated accolades from Zagat**. Yup Zagat. The Zagat survey, created in 1979 by the Zagats (Tim and Nina), polls diners themselves. In 2010, Five Guys nipped In-N-Out Burger for the best fast food burger. It was a contentious win inasmuch as the West Coast loser was disputatious. Sour pickles perhaps? http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/08/17/five-guys-best-burger-zagat-fast-food-survey-2010_n_684302.html#s127401&title=Best_FastFood_Burger
The chain has exploded onto the scene. From Fives Guys themselves: http://www.fiveguys.com/history.aspx
- 1986: The first Five Guys location opens in Arlington, VA.
- 1986 - 2001: Five Guys opens five locations around the DC metro-area and perfected their business of making burgers… and starts to build a cult-like following.
- 2002: Five Guys decides DC metro-area residents shouldn't be the only ones to experience their burgers and start to franchise in Virginia and Maryland.
- 2003: Five Guys sells out of franchise territory within 18 months and starts to open the rest of the country for franchise rights.
- 2003 - Present: Five Guys expands to over 750 locations in over 40 states and 4 Canadian provinces.
- There are over 250,000 possible ways to order a burger at Five Guys.
- We use only fresh ground beef.
- There are no freezers in Five Guys locations, just coolers. Nothing is ever frozen.
- We use only Peanut oil.
- Our menu is trans-fat free.
Five Guys sure gets some hoity-toity clientele. Look at BO. After ordering, he ate some peanuts (free for all) while waiting. The native Hawaiian chatted up while queuing for his 100% trans free fat fat meal to be readied.
Oh, about those free peanuts. Five Guys is sooo cool the company warns about peanut allergy, asking customers not to take the peanuts out to the neighborhoods where allergic children could suffer. Although peanuts are popular, deaths can occur.
For sure, the burgers are delicious, wet and messy. Plenty of napkins are provided. All of the toppings are "free". Well for the price of the burger (over a fin), the toppings should be "free". Each burger is made to order, cooked well done and delivered wrapped in foil, like the kind found in most home kitchens. Most times fries are ordered, too. Well they should be. With huge, 50 pound bags of potatoes piled in the middle of the dining floor, one gets the idea the potato gig-a-doo is important to the Five Guys schtick. Especially when the bags are labeled Five Guys!
Moreover, FG goes on to tell the customer where exactly the day's potato offering were grown. Gotta like that. FG is serious about its fries. For example,
The fries themselves are thick, with skin, fresh, WELL cooked, congestive heart failure seasoned, greasy, limpish yet firm (hmmm). Yes, they are good!!! Like chocolate, FG's fries are addictive and guilt inducing. The portions are OVERSIZED. A small order is plenty for two chow hounds. Which leads to the greasy bag.
Five Guys is a bare bones kind of place. Basic this and that; chairs, tables, flooring, lighting etc. The tin foil burger wraps and plain brown bags go along with this motif. But the bag, the grease stained bag is a notable feature of the experience. So notable that Five Guys brags it by describing "Fanatics" as,
You might be a Five Guys Fanatic if:
- You know all of the 15 free toppings by heart
- Your heart skips a beat when you see a grease stained brown paper bag***
- The sight of foil causes you to salivate
- Your hand is tired from drawing intensecomment card pictures
- You "look-up" when trying to order at fine dining establishments
Five Guys is current and chic. The website is useful and concise. Ordering online is nice, saving time and effort. The FAQ's are informative. http://www.fiveguys.com/faq.aspx
All in all, Five Guys is a "you get what you pay for" burger joint. Better than the lower priced burger chains, which like to use "sauces" to enhance their burgers, FG's meat is ultimately the difference. Fresh ground beef...
"While our beef is neither organic nor are the cattle free range, our distributor purchases raw materials from the major meat suppliers in the US who are required to treat the cattle humanely and follow all the procedures set forth by the USDA."
Also, the limited menu allows FG to do a little well. Besides burgers, FG offers only hot dogs, while competitors add new items every week. FG says..
"Five Guys does not currently have plans to add any items to our menu. We follow the philosophy of focusing on a few items, and serving them to the best of our ability. If we were to add to our menu, then you can guarantee that we would only do so if we could serve the highest quality product possible. For example, there are a lot of great milkshakes out there, and at this point we think that others are doing it better than we could!"
So, Five Guys is a winner, an American original. Burgers and fries, perfect together. Especially at Five Guys. Ta-Da!
E cosi va...
*Five Guys takes its name for the five sons of founders Jerry and Janie Murrell.
**Zagat or Zagat's sounds like stugots, but they are similarly sounding non related words. Stugots is derived from the Italian words (que)sto cozzo, literally this dick, familiarly the dick, the cock. Stugots was the name of Tony Soprano's boat in the HBO hit, The Sopranos.
|The Stugots=The this dick (cock)|
lose the "The"
*** emphasis added