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Nevada’s first Five Guys Burgers and Fries debuts in Henderson

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Justin M. Bowen

Customers dine on burgers and fries on opening day at Five Guys Burgers and Fries in Henderson, which opened Wednesday, March 2, 2011. Three more locations are scheduled to open in the Las Vegas Valley in the coming weeks.

Five Guys Burgers and Fries

A burger with everything is photographed at the new Five Guys Burgers and Fries on Eastern Avenue in Henderson on Wednesday, March 2, 2011. Launch slideshow »

Map of Five Guys Burgers and Fries

Five Guys Burgers and Fries

10271 S. Eastern Ave., Suite 101, Henderson

Lots of people might not have heard of Five Guys until one very important guy, President Barack Obama, dropped in at one of the burgers-and-fries joints near the White House a couple of years ago and left with $80 in food.

With no advertising -- the company relies only on word-of-mouth -- the franchise-driven company opened its first Nevada store today, in a strip mall along Eastern Avenue in Henderson.

Among the investors who partnered to buy the rights to all the Five Guys outlets in Nevada is Ryan Howes, who until about a month ago worked in the heady world of finance for Citigroup.

"I left it for burgers-and-fries," he said today as the room swelled with lunchtime diners. "People I worked with raised their eyebrows because banking is supposed to be a career job where you work your way up the ladder."

But Howes, who lives in Henderson, said he saw more fun and challenges getting in the fast-food business, his wife's anxiety notwithstanding.

"The recession is the best time to open a new business," Howes said. "You can get the best deals on leases, construction costs are down and there's a large labor pool to select from." For the Henderson store, about 50 people were hired, starting at minimum wage and hoping for raises based on feedback from secret shoppers.

Howes and his partners plan to open as many as 15 other outlets in the Las Vegas Valley in the next four to seven years as well as three around Reno. This comes on the heels of Smashburger's arrival in the Las Vegas Valley, which is trying to wrest customers away from the more-established In-N-Out Burger.

Five Guys Burgers and Fries, headquartered in Virginia, started in 1986 and today boasts 761 outlets — well, make that 762 now — around the country. Three other locations are on tap to open soon in the Las Vegas Valley: one at the Cannery Casino in North Las Vegas, one at the Las Vegas Outlets, and one in the southwest valley (near the 215 Beltway and Rainbow Boulevard).

Burgers start at $4.99, with such toppings as grilled onions and mushrooms, jalapeno peppers and A-1 sauce. Five Guys also offers hot dogs and a veggie sandwich "but we want to be known as a burgers-and-fries place," said Mike Cummings, another partner.

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  1. I ate at one of these in DC last year. It was really good, but they packed it in a bag (I was dining in) with like a million french fries and when I unwrapped the burger, it was smashed in the shape of a softball... still good though!

  2. Finally!!!!

  3. A little juicy, but good. Fries could be better. They are kind of limp.

  4. Love the burgers - better than Fatburger. Fries could be better - no other choices for sides, unless you consider the free peanuts.

  5. I won't form an opinion until I've tried them but I have observed just from this article a couple of things.
    1. Prices are pretty high for burgers at a fast food joint. In n Out is much more reasonable.

    2. Looks like they copycatted the decor of In n Out.

    3. In n Out employees are paid a much better salary and as a result they get the cream of the crop of fast food employees.

    4. I wish them the best of luck. I know people back east rave about them on Facebook, but of course back east there are no In n Out burgers.

  6. Comment removed by moderator. Language.

  7. I have made it a point to eat a 5 Guys when I am back east and look forward to eating at one of the local stores. Great burgers.

  8. I live in Florida and I go just for the fries but the burgers are good.

  9. 5 guys is better than in-n-out but more expensive. In-N-Out is awesome and more of a fast food comparison. 5 Guys is more like getting a diner burger in a bag especially with all the topping choices. No tipping also! Cant beat the peanuts while you wait!

  10. Truly amazing.

    Is there anything you folks won't complain about?

    50 people now have jobs. There is another choice of some place to eat.

    Some of you have never stepped foot in the place yet you can rate their food.

    Some complain it is juicy? What do you want, some dried up hung of meat?

    I guess when you have nothing better to do in your life but complain the Internet is all you really have.

  11. mrsskurvy

    Diabetics can eat hamburgers - just without the bun and maybe, just maybe 10 fries MAX (pending if your GL is around 100). It's the carbs and the sugars that get ya'. Not the meat or the onions, tomatoes, pickles, cheese. And just use a little mustard and ketchup.

  12. The food "stylist" was out to lunch when they took the photo of that burger!

  13. Just got one here in the Chicago area a couple of months ago, good stuff.

  14. I ate there first in Geogia,they are NOT LIKE IN N OUT. The fries are better and not dry. They have cajun fries and regular. Free bags of peanuts were good too! They let you throw your shells on the floor in Georgia but not California. The staff was young and polite and very diverse, this is not the old south, black and white kids working together and suprisingly no hispanics! These kids are doing jobs that bush said "Amerians don't want to do". You can put anything on your burger just like at your house.And the hot dogs are grilled and very good!

  15. I can't wait to try the food. It's hard to find healthy alternatives in the same price range so I'll just just have to eat the crap they serve at most fast food places a couple of times per week. I will take vitamins and exercise 30 minutes/day 4-5 times a week to keep from getting too fat.

  16. Great Burgers - loved them in Virginia/DC. Fries orders are on the Huge side. This is a splurge - not an everyday meal. Can't wait to go. Usually best burgers in town, I like them better than In and Out Burgers. Steak and Shake - I would stick with the Shake. McD's,BK,Wendy's, etc.. have dollar burgers for a reason.

  17. Another must try new burger joint is "Smashburger". Excellent.