Hailing from Astoria, Queens with only 6 years in the game, it seems like the brand is constantly opening in new neighborhoods — from Wall Street to Midtown to even a new venture in Astoria — the Bareburger team is quickly taking over New York City. We had an opportunity to chat about the brand with Communications Manager Emily Maloney and Marketing Director Nabeel Alamgir.
What is it about Astoria that made it a great starting ground for Bareburger?
EM: So the CEO, Euripides, he grew up in Astoria and he felt like he wanted to give back to the community service that raised him pretty much that was the idea behind all of it.
Bareburger differentiates itself with a focus on organic and local foods. One awesome fact we found out is that the bareburger group only uses blue marble ice cream in the shakes because it is the only certified organic ice cream plant in New York. What are some resources close to New York that you guys use to create the menu?
EM: So we’ve actually got a few farms now we are getting all of our greens from that are local. And that’s obviously just when it’s in season or otherwise we sourced from California or New Jersey. We try to source our meat locally but it’s better when we get our bison from Montana because they raised it better and we don’t have bison farm out here. So anything that makes sense to be local we start from the most local and then we branch out based on quality.
How important is the health conscious aspect of food to bareburger?
EM: We try to keep it at the top of the priority list. There so many burger concepts especially in the city so it sets us apart that we focus on the health aspect of it all.
When speaking to a new Bareburger customer, what menu item do you suggest to try first?
EM: I would go big and start with the supreme. If you’re just stepping foot for the first time into a Bareburger, this burger has the essence of our brand in it and it’s a little bit crazy.
What gives it the essence?
EM: So it comes with chopped fries in the burger and onion rings on top and then it has a special sauce which is our own recipe.
Looking at the Bareburger menu there is more than just Burgers. How would you guys classify the restaurant?
EM: The one word that comes to mind for everything is just the freshness of it all. So yeah we have sandwiches and we have salad — it’s a big part of our menu that sometimes gets overlooked because our name is Bareburger. So I would just say we’re good fresh quality food that is family oriented. We have cubby meals we have something for everyone so if you don’t want a big burger you can opt for a salad.
NA: Our Co-Founder John Simeonidis, he’s our interior designer and a lot of the elements in the restaurant were handpicked by him. For example all the chandeliers and lights to the restaurants are made from silverware spoons and forks that he got from his garage. He just took bunch of them and he just put them together. And to this day we still use all the chandeliers that were handmade from his dad’s house in the garage. All our floors are bamboo. The reason we pick bamboo floors because bamboo technically is a grass that grows around 10 feet a day especially from the provider we source it from. So we use bamboo floors in all our restaurants. And all our roofs are tin roofs from reclaimed barns so we basically never have used new tin roofs. All our tables are from Ohio. We actually have a restaurant in Ohio but even before that we started sources from Ohio because they’re all reclaimed wood and the guy who puts them together he has a number on every single one of them and it’s a family business from three generations and all of it comes from them.
It’s great because EP our CEO focuses on the food and John our second founder and Chief Brand Officer he focuses on how the restaurant is designed and he has a huge passion for sustainable practices for interior design and exterior design. I just see him learn every single day more and more elements of the restaurant sustainable.
Word on the street is that the Bareburger group is no moving to the Southern-style biscuits and fried chicken restaurant. What made you guys want to venture out to something so different?
He’s [Euripides] always liked Southern cuisine. And the whole chicken and biscuits thing is a simple thing but it has to be done right and he has the executive kitchen staff and he has people to choose from his Bareburger staff and he just wanted to try something different and take a new direction. Meanwhile we’re still expanding with their burger pretty successfully so it has it interfered with his focus. He’s able to do both at once. We just had a tasting on Saturday [6/27] and the food is going to be pretty excellent.
Other than the food, how will Burnside Biscuits be different from Bareburger?
The decor is way different. The whole brand is going to be completely different. I work a little bit on the social media there but I think we’re getting a different person altogether. The voice will be sort of the same — kind of young, laid back. We want that to be the same but the decorwise is all different. There’s really beautiful tile on the floor. There’s a lot of light blues, whites, light greens, and then there’s a pop of color with the espresso machine that’s bright red and pretty big so has a presence on the counter and then there’s a bright teal couch that’s going to be out in the waiting area. So totally different color scheme. Totally different feel when you walk in. There’s a big brick oven that has Burnside written on the front in tiles and that’s what we styled everything on this big brick oven. And there’s really cool light fixtures. If you go on Facebook we have a Burnside Facebook page and I’ve uploaded a couple of the interior photos so you can see how different it is from Bareburger’s style.
Can Bareburger fans find the same organic theme at Burnside Biscuits?
It’s forsure going to be organic, sustainable, and all-natural but not as heavily focused as Bareburger. And also not as accommodating to people with gluten allergies, vegetarians, or vegans. There’s very few menu items that will be for vegetarians and will be only like side items. So it’s definitely going to focus on the true chicken and biscuit rather than the health aspect like we do at Bareburger.
We’re excited for the arrival of Burnside Biscuits! They are having a soft launch Monday July 13th at 5pm at 32-07 30th Ave, Astoria, Queens. The Bareburger team takes into consideration every aspect from food to decor. So next time you visit one of their restaurants, let all your sense enjoy the experience.