Five Guys opened their Village location on Bleecker at the corner of 7th and Barrow earlier in the week. I stopped by on Sunday to check it out, since there seemed some hype around the other location in Manhattan.
I called my order in, since I read that they take a long time and tend to be really crowded. After placing my order, I was told to come by in 7-8 minutes. Not bad, I thought.
I showed up after 10 minutes and paid for my order - a bacon cheeseburger with small fries, which came to just under $12.
The place was actually pretty empty. 3 tables had diners and a couple other people waiting for takeout orders. There were probably about 8-9 staff members there. Why so many, I have no idea - esp as most of them were moving at a glacial pace and the others were just standing around, talking to each other, on their cellphones, generally ignoring customers. I waited another 15 minutes for my food and finally got it after close to half an hour from placing the order.
Since I live pretty close by, I got it home and quickly out of the paper bag so it wouldn't get soggy.
Fries - they are of the hand cut, skin on, slightly thicker variety. they were slightly soggy and mealy. Not really enough salt. Mediocre at best. They have a "cajun" or spicy option, which I witnessed asjust a boatload of seasoned salt dumped on them.
Burger - as advertised, they only cook it well done from fresh (not frozen) patties. There were 2 patties on my burger and they were really dry - sorta like bad Johnny Rockets burgers. Crumbly, with really no juiciness. Burger had no real beef flavor at all. The lettuce, onions and tomato I got on it was pretty lackluster. They forgot the cheese. The bacon strips were measly, thin and amazingly, pretty flavorless (it's bacon - how can you screw that up?!)
I got through maybe 2/3 of the burger and maybe 1/3 of the fries. The rest went to the trash.
Not sure what the hype is about, but this doesn't come anywhere near being a contender for even a decent burger in the West Village. What a disappointment - they have such a great location and I had such high hopes.
I'll take a pass next time and try the many other great burger stand-bys in the nabe. (stoned crow, extra virgin, westville, even corner bistro - and i hear market table has a great burger during the day.)