Is The Burger Trend Coming To An End?

You may have heard Neil Perry’s Rockpool Dining Group, the team behind the incredibly successful Burger Project chain, has been quietly closing the popular burger outlets over the past few months.

Perry isn’t the only well-known fine dining chef who bet on burgers but is now taking a step back. Shannon Bennet’s Melbourne-based chain Benny Burger also closed earlier this year.

So what does this mean for our beloved burger? Is Australia’s burger craze coming to an end?

The Courier Mail reported when Burger Project Brisbane closed that it was due to a “saturated burger market in Brisbane”. So what about the rest of the country? Nine Burger Project outlets are still open and serving the good stuff in New South Wales and Victoria.

Saturated market or not, venues across Sydney and Melbourne are still thriving on burger-only menus (even if they don’t have the lines out the door like they used to).

Perhaps it’s the new generation of health-conscious diners that is having an impact on the ‘guilty’ burger trend. Perhaps it’s the rise in vegetarianism? Or maybe the wave of nostalgia for the old-fashioned burgers that we had as kids has worn off?

But burgers have always been there, and we don’t think they’re going to die out any time soon. As with any trend, it’s just a matter of adapting to the market. If you, like us, think the burger trend is here to stay, you might like to consider these approaches:

  • Make sure you have gluten free options. Even some frozen gluten free bread you can thaw and serve will keep gluten free diners happy.
  • Back to basics. The decadent burgers that were so popular on Instagram might not be that popular in real life. Bring it back to basics with classic cheeseburgers that people can add their favourite toppings to.
  • Experiment with flavours. We love seeing venues experiment with different cuisines and flavours in their builds. Asian flavours work super well in burgers, as do traditional Australian flavours (Roo burger in a Damper Bun anyone?).
  • Always have a vegetarian option (that can become vegan on request). Don’t alienate potential customers by reducing their choice. As more and more Australians reduce the amount of meat in their diet your mushroom or tofu burgers might become your best sellers.
  • Have some supplementary options. Sometimes four out of five people in a group want a burger. But what about the other one? If one person can’t find something on your menu to order you may lose the whole group. Make sure you have one or two other options (even if you’re a burger-only joint).

We’ve love to hear what is happening in and around your venue, are burgers still alive and dominating menus? Do your customers come back again and again for the same decadent burger offering? If you’re looking for inspiration or guidance, we’re always here to help. Just head to our Facebook page to reach out.

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