Founded in Australia by Bradley Michael, Ribs & Burgers will launch in South Africa in Menlyn Maine, Pretoria in September 2016.
Popular in Australia, as a boutique casual dining restaurant, the first local restaurant will be the 20th of the group. In a country where red meat dominates most menus, Ribs & Burgers crafts a niche by offering something special and varied to the consumer who expects more from a restaurant than mere hunger control. The concept, developed to have an identity that evoked the history of the classic butcher, will be spearheaded locally by Savva and Natasha Sideris.
Over the years, the chain has proven its passion does not end in the kitchen, through its support of local farmers, sponsoring of community groups and helping feed those less fortunate.
“For me, restaurants are a fascinating laboratory for life – they test us to the limit,” says Michael, who is an ex-South African who moved to Australia and started the brand. He is now bringing it back home. “It’s hard work to remain consistent in the pursuit of providing product and service excellence and hospitality to our guests. We have always been a ‘people organisation’ that works for people. My vision and my goal from the very start was to become the preferred choice in the hospitality industry and to keep growing and developing our people.”
With these goals in mind, coupled with the everlasting quest to ‘never slow down’, the brand began expanding and today has 16 locations across Australia. In 2015, it expanded internationally and is now in the US and will also be opening in the UK and Dubai soon.
“Shifting consumer priorities are forcing restaurants to adapt in a variety of ways – some are rising to the occasion, while others are falling flat. South African consumers are now finally looking at the ingredient list and asking lots of questions about what’s in the food they’re eating. They also want a ‘whole experience’. They want to enjoy their meal in an area they feel they can connect with the brand. The trend is leaving a big impact on the food industry as a whole and opened the perfect space for Ribs & Burgers to occupy as a casual dining destination, that caters to both male and female customers, with a healthy slant to it as well,” adds Savva. “The ribs are marinated and slow cooked for eight hours then basted with a propriety family recipe. All meals are cooked with quality ingredients, including locally sourced grass fed beef and hormone free chicken with a selection of healthy salads and sides.”
Theatre of food
The interior is driven by an open style kitchen, emphasising the theatre of food preparation and the deliverance of gourmet food to its customer. This theatre is amplified by exposing the operations and allowing the customer to connect with the brand. The crafted detailing of the interior, eclectic elements sourced globally and new creative ideas are fused together with substantial brand messaging, engaging the customer to indulge in a new casual dining experience.
The design includes custom wooden boards, classic typography, a fresh contemporary combination of tiles and marble, with light and airy colouring inspired by the brand, which creates a fresh spin on the traditional darkly lit meat restaurants we have grown accustomed to. Ribs & Burgers will fill the gap in the market for those who don’t wish to sit in a formal steakhouse setting, but still want a stylish environment that appeals to both sexes. With a variety of healthy options as well as good classic burgers to keep people coming back, diners can be assured of delicious food and exceptional value for money without compromising on quality.