A beef with restaurant review
Sir, – As the franchisee and operator of Five Guys in Ireland, we are writing to you to respond to Catherine Cleary’s recent review of Five Guys which we felt was not truly representative of the Five Guys experience and was unduly sensational (“My worst ever meal as a restaurant reviewer”, Magazine, June 16th).
Five Guys is based around three principles: customer experience, food quality and cleanliness. We do everything we can to make sure the customer enjoys their visit. If the music is too loud or too low, we are always happy to adjust the volume. If the food isn’t to your liking or we make a mistake with the order, we are always happy to remake or offer a refund.
Everything is prepared daily and made freshly, there are no freezers. Potatoes are hand cut every day for our fries, hence the bags of potatoes that we have on hand at the store. And our fruit and vegetables are cleaned, cut and prepared on site every morning, hence our outstanding crew start as early as 6am in order to be ready for an 11am opening time. We are proud supporters of Irish suppliers. Along with our Irish beef, our fruit (our milkshakes are made with fresh fruit), vegetables and our buns are all supplied by two Irish family-owned companies. Therefore, we think it is disingenuous and misleading of your reviewer to suggest that our food provenance is “zilch” other than “Irish” beef. We understand she visited the store during a lunchtime on our extremely busy opening week. Naturally, it was a challenge for us and the new members of our crew, but overall we think they did an excellent job in coping with the huge demand and in delivering excellent product and service.
The whole Five Guys organisation has a meticulous dedication to food quality, cleanliness and customer service. Every Five Guys store is subject to an unannounced quarterly audit by an independent firm which covers food hygiene, brand standards, and health and safety and takes place over three hours. Additionally every Five Guys store, is also secret shopped twice a week, by another independent firm – we are marked on service, food quality and cleanliness – we are extremely proud of the fact that we consistently feature among the highest scoring franchisees globally, and last year won the award for highest scoring international franchisee. We believe that we aspire to the very highest standards in terms of food quality and customer service and undergo protocols as rigorous as any in order to attain these.
We don’t pretend to be a high-end restaurant, and it’s also fair to say that we are not best known for our veggie sandwich. We are a simple burger restaurant that endeavours to serve great burgers and fries, made fresh and to order, in a clean and atmospheric store. If Catherine Cleary would like to visit us again, we would welcome the opportunity to try and change her mind. – Yours, etc,
& DERY DESMOND,