Ten years ago, a fast-casual phenomenon known as Shake Shack opened its door for the first time in New York City, setting off a decade of soaring sales and worldwide expansion.
With locations spread around the world including Washington, Moscow, Abu Dhabi, London, four locations in Istanbul and eateries throughout the Middle East, with Las Vegas and others to open later this year, Shake Shack is the gourmet burger joint of choice for many.
Launched out of a hot dog cart during the redevelopment of Madison Square Park, Chef Danny Meyer (of Union Square Hospitality Group fame) jumped at the chance to open up a food kiosk in the park, and to this day, customers wait upwards of an hour to get their burger and shake fix (thankfully, there’s a Shack Cam to monitor the queues at the flagship).
Additional locations are seeing the same success as the park location, with CNBC estimating that, as of 2010, each location was bringing in $4 million in profit annually compared to McDonald’s, whose average franchise brings in $2 million in profit.
To commemorate the brand’s decade of success, Shake Shack is staging a “Decade of Shack” celebration this week.[more]
Meyer has invited five famed chefs to create their own limited-time burgers for the celebration, including Monday’s “Piggie Shack” burger by Daniel Boulud; Tuesday’s “Shrimp Stack” burger by Momofuku’s David Chang; Wednesday’s “AZ Cabrito Butter Burger” by Andrew Zimmern; Thurday’s “Humm Burger” by Daniel Humm; and Friday’s “Breslin Burger” by April Bloomfield.
The celebration will culminate on Thursday with the all-day Shack-Fest, including free concerts, an outdoor ping-pong area, a hot-dog cart a la the early days and a special cake made by New York baker Dominique Ansel of cronut fame. Shake Shack also teamed up with Brooklyn Brewery to create Shack X IPA, which will be on tap across the US through Labor Day. All the cash collected during Shack Fest will be donated to the park’s fund, and a portion of each burger’s fare will be donated as well.
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