Five Guys Burgers
23228 Hawthorne Blvd
Torrance, CA 90505
South Bay finally gets a Five Guys Burgers!
Five Guys Burgers is the first tenant in a new complex located on the south/west corner of Lomita Blvd. and Hawthorne Blvd. As of the time of this review, there is a Chase community drive through back under construction in front. Parking is somewhat scarce and may become an issue when the complex is fully occupied. Seating is available both indoors and outdoors on a small patio area.
CARL: The corporate offices of Lunch Pig are located near the Torrance Airport and, for anyone that isn’t from around here, there is a TON of construction in the area. Highlights include a new tower for the Torrance Memorial Medical Center, new buildings hosting scores of medical suites and a mysterious bit of construction right on the corner of Lomita Blvd. and Hawthorne Blvd. The mystery was solved a few weeks ago when a Five Guys banner was draped out front as workers prepared the bright red decor for the new business. The time had finally come and this week our newest local burger restaurant was open.
I have had experience with Five Guys in the past and my recollection was that it was pretty similar to In ‘n Out Burger – a specialty burger with a reputation bigger than the reality of the burger itself. Don’t get me wrong, I like In ‘n Out but I wouldn’t go out of my way for one. Such a statement is sacrilege in Southern California, the birthplace of the famous burger chain but it is the truth for me. In the name of science, I eagerly hit up Five Guys with Oliver and his 5 year old son, Wolfgang.
The Five Guys menu is painfully simple. Very few food items, no milkshakes, no combo meals etc. Pretty much burgers, hot dogs and fries. Pick your toppings, pay your money and move along. I opted for the popular “All the Way” hamburger with the standard condiments including sliced mushrooms ($5.89). I added Cajun fries ($3.59) and a large soda ($2.59). The burger was a tad expensive at almost $6 but the deal killer here is the fries at $3.59 – probably double what you would normally expect – but the order is big and you could easily share with a friend. My total was over $13 which was a bit shocking but once I had a chance to dig in, I LOVED the burger and the size and taste of the fries won me over. The Lunch Pig goal is to keep it under $10 so, if you are budget minded, get the burger and fries and bring your own beverage. Trust me, it is worth it!
I do have a rather odd complaint about this particular Five Guys location. The restaurant design has some serious flaws. For starters, when you walk in the front door you are overwhelmed by the loud music (Buzzcocks I believe) and the sound of the workers yelling instructions to each other – seriously YELLING! The line to order is neat enough but the area for waiting is very small and you end up standing way to close to people trying to enjoy their meals. My biggest complaint is that the lines for the nifty soda dispensing machines clog the flow of traffic at the crossroads of the employee entrance, restrooms, and the patio doors – a rather serious error in my opinion. I witnessed several people bumping into each other and even saw an employee open the patio doors into a customer seated at an outside table located way too close to the door.
To sum it up, great burgers, great fries, pricey, and loud. My suggestion is to get your food to go, share the fries and grab a soda from 7-11. Hard to score this one but he food itself won me over so Five Guys gets 4.5 Pigs.
” Great Burgers and Hot Dogs!”
Oliver: Today Wolfie joined Lunch Pig for the weekly lunch and we visited Five Guys Burgers. As Carl describes, it is a new place right around the corner from us. The line can get long during lunch but it moves quickly. Placing your order might be a little more difficult than you are used to, there is no combo menu and you build your burger with the various condiments and toppings.
“No Combo Menu”
Not sure how it happened, but a lunch for my five year old boy and myself cost $24.00. I had to double check looking for some obvious mistake in the bill, but there was none. I had ordered a bacon cheeseburger and Wolf had a hot-dog with mustard. We added a medium order of Cajun fries and wolf got a small regular fries along with two medium drinks, so it cost nearly $40 for two adults and a five year old. They do not have a kids menu or even kids drinks, just what comes from their high tech fountains.
Lunch Pig has a goal with each lunch, it has to be under an hour, reasonably healthy and not over $10.
Their burgers really taste great and I really wanted to love Five Guys, but the high price for a burger stand, uncomfortable dining and noise really made it hard. If you have a child their lack of any sort of kids menu or drinks is a deal killer. I give Five Guys 3.5 pigs, like I said, the burgers were delicious, but that could not over power the rest. I will be giving them another try soon, perhaps there are some opening day issues to be worked out still.