The latest buzz around Tallahassee has been about the opening of a Five Guys Burgers & Fries restaurant near the Red Elephant off Thomasville Rd. Well, it finally opened to the public on Tuesday, July 28th, and of course the Tallahassee population came out in droves.
Posted by Tally Foodie Sunday, August 2, 2009
My husband and I ventured over on Friday night to see if the excitement had calmed down at all. But in true Tallahassee fashion, the new restaurant had brought out everyone and their brother, and their kids, and their aunt and their mother-in-law, and well...you see where I'm going with this.
When we entered the restaurant, there was a line that extended all the way to the front door. We considered leaving and coming back at another time, but the line seemed to be moving at a quick pace, and we definitely had to try President Obama's favorite burger. The waiting is made easy by boxes of peanuts in the shell strategically placed along the line. We grabbed a handful, cracked them open and waited our turn. Everyone else was throwing the shells on the ground, but I felt it such a shame seeing as how the place just opened and everyone was already trashing it. So, I threw mine in the trash cans, like a good little girl.
The space is decorated with large signs and smaller laminated features boasting quotes of praise and glowing articles about the Five Guys franchise. They serve not only as something to read in line while you wait, but also to make your salivary glands work overtime so that by the time you reach the register you'd be ready to fork over your life savings for one of their burgers.
Luckily, you don't have to. Hubby and I placed our orders, he went for the bacon cheeseburger and I went for the little bacon cheeseburger (a difference of one patty or two), we got a large fry and two small fountain drinks all for under $20.
I pounced on a nearby empty table, which was the only one in the joint and we waited for our number to be called. It was funny watching the other people as their numbers were called - their eyes lit up like it was Christmas morning and they were 5 years old again, in awe of the magical mystery of the gifts that Santa Claus had brought them. I laughed each time I saw someone pop out of their seat after their number was called with a goofy grin on their face. But by the time our number was called, I was so hungry that I did a little seated happy dance of my own.
I have to confess, I am not a burger person. I don't crave burgers, and I rarely order them at restaurants unless I know they'll be phenomenal. For me, you have to have excellent beef - no gristle, no fat - and fresh toppings (nothing soggy or rubbery). Five Guys exceeded my expectations. The burger was nice and juicy, flavorful and fresh off the grill (you can see them cooking your burger right at the counter), and the toppings were crisp and crunchy - especially the bacon, which is a must for me. The fries were a success all their own, with cajun flavoring so spicy that you'll literally lick your fingers to get each and every last bit of flavor. And for me, the little burger (one patty) was the perfect amount, I was able to eat the whole thing, but not feel gluttonous.
As we vacated our table, and another starving trio snatched it out from under us, I hoped that this enthusiasm Tallahassee was displaying for Five Guys would continue past it's opening week. I, for one, know I'll definitely be coming back.
Tally Foodie Rating:
Atmosphere - B (a bit crowded)
Taste - A
Service - B (the wait was a bit long, but worth it)
Presentation - C (but it's a burger joint)
Price - $
Five Guys Burgers & Fries
1872 Thomasville Rd.
Tallahassee FL 32303