The burger boom

Key Insights

  • Burger eateries don’t appear to be slowing down, giving people the option to grab a quick feed on the go
  • The versatility of burgers is helping shift the traditional hamburger into the realm of the exciting and unfamiliar
  • Clever use of social media marketing is prompting people to travel far and wide

The humble burger has seen a resurgence over the last few years. The enjoyment Aussies get from eating burgers means savvy businesses can reap the benefits of latching onto the burger boom.

Nowadays, you’ll find cafes, diners, pubs, bars – even fine restaurants serving up burgers, catering to all generations. Burgers have jumped up from the dull end of the menu and transformed into a refined, affordable and easy-to-eat, two-handed best seller.

A major advantage of burgers is that they’re quick to prepare and cost-effective to make. McDonald’s, who opened their first hamburger store in Australia in 1971, have mastered fast and cheap. But it’s the opposite of the McDonald’s effect driving Australia’s new burger passion; people want fresh, healthier and original burger goodness that doesn’t feel cookie-cutter.

Delivering supersized goodness

The versatility of burgers is helping shift the traditional hamburger into the realm of the exciting and unfamiliar.

There are numerous directions a venue can take to create unique burger offerings. It could be gourmet burgers, brioche burgers, bun-less burgers or mini sliders. In 2016 monster burgers were the rage, with restaurants and cafes creating sky-high, indulgent buns.

The burger is a classic blank slate. Put your own creative stamp on it and tap into the possibilities.

Targeting the health conscious

Health conscience consumers are driving demand for guilt free burger options. You can expect to see gluten free, vegan, vegetarian or dairy free varieties across restaurant menus.

Grill’d, a dominant player in the healthy burger space, has continued to reinvent their menu by adding more veggie pattie varieties, low-carb superbuns, zucchini fries and avocado chips.

Restaurants such as Mary’s in Sydney and 8bit in Melbourne are using the best grass-fed beef in Australia and quality local produce to churn out hundreds of burgers each day for hungry, happy customers.

Social media fuelling hunger

Social media has helped amplify the new wave of burger crazes, with restaurants and patrons sharing their best mouth-watering burger snaps for instant clickbait.

Creative options like black charcoal buns (Matcha Mylkbar in Melbourne), the Trufflenator burger slathered with truffles and cheese (Dee Why Hotel, Sydney), and big American diner burgers with sides and desserts that include alcoholic thick shakes, mac and cheese croquettes, chilli cheese fries and giant waffle stacks (Grand Trailer Park Taverna, Melbourne), today’s burger is instantly instagrammable.

Clever use of social media marketing is prompting people to travel from far and wide, only to queue up for hours to get their fix.

Low risk, big returns

Burgers are generally a low risk menu item, which may be why many fine dining chefs are also investing in the burger hype.

While burgers are unlikely to be your highest profit margin dishes, their popularity and ease to produce make them a reliable revenue source and a trusty drawcard.

Step into Burger Project in Sydney or Melbourne and be delighted by master chef

Neil Perry’s (Rockpool Group) gourmet burgers. Or Huxtaburger (chef, Daniel Wilson) that has the tagline ‘Hot Beef. Cold Beer.’ meaning there’s no messing around, just straight up top notch burgers and craft beers.

And better yet, the burgers are all under $15, so customers can expect high quality at an affordable price, whilst the business secures a good return on investment.

As everyday life becomes more hectic, people are increasingly ditching home cooked meals in favour of eating out. Burger eateries don’t appear to be slowing down, giving people the option to grab a quick feed on the go. Whether it’s a satisfying meal or a special treat, people are drawn towards the sentiment and familiarity of enjoying a juicy burger. Serve up a quality product for the right price and customers will be clamouring for more.

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