The flip side of Yarraville

35 Comments

See review here.

Coming soon to the site of the former post office, on the corner of Anderson and Ballarat …

Hey, even as fans of Grill’d, we’re not sure how we feel about having a branch right in the heart of our neighbourhood.

Of course, there’s a Nando’s just up the street, but it’s not in a so prominent postion.

What do you think?

35 thoughts on “The flip side of Yarraville

  1. Soooo disappointed a chain burger place is going in here. Burger edge does a good burger. Do we really need 2 burger places??? Um no I don’t think so. Renting the premises would be expensive and only so many businesses that could afford the rent, hope this is not a sign of things to come in yarraville…….

      • Yep, bad sign. I’m all for competition, but can’t get excited about a burger chain I’m afraid. Certainly doesn’t add anything to the village. And with an Endota Spa arriving in yarraville shortly I have my fingers crossed the village doesn’t turn into another cloned high street

  2. What a pity. The last thing Yarraville needs is a rich kids franchise. I thought it more appropriate that they stayed on the other side of the river/s.
    I also don’t understand how this business model exists. Anyone who pays $12 for a hamburger made by a smug 15y/o boy is a mug.
    In my opinion you just cannot beat a hamburger with the lot from the local fish and chip shop.
    Then again, good luck to them, i think they are going to need it. Nandos, just up the footpath never has anyone in it and that is not such a bad thing for Yarraville.

    • Hi Paul! We love burgers from the F&C, too, but truth to tell we don’t find it that much cheaper these days. Grill’d burgers are very fine – but it seem pretty excess to requirements on that corner. And as you say, nando’s doesn’t seem to be going so hot.

    • Lets not forget it is giving lots of our young local kids their first work experience, stop whinging if you live in a well off are the high street is inevitable.

    • Do stop whinging, itis giving local kids part time jobs and some great enjoyment working in their areas. If you are going to life in a well off area expect whatever arrives, bring on the High Street

  3. Have to agree with Mimi, not keen on the idea of this – I was in Yarraville recently and wondered what was going to fill that lovely corner space. Something a bit more “villagey” would be better there

  4. Perhaps it’s not an ideal fit, however I’d imagine having a Grill’d outlet is a much better option than a McDonalds franchise based on what I’ve experienced where I reside, South of the river.

    Will be interesing to see how they perform in Yarraville. The Grill’d in Elsternwick is one of the busiest food businesses in the Glenhuntly Rd shopping strip and I don’t have an issue with eating there every once in a while as they have a decent quality product.

    In addition, the Grill’d store in Elsternwick happens to be community minded and continually supports and donates to a variety of local interest groups.

  5. A few points of opinion;

    1. Burger Edge does a decent burger. Grill’d burgers are over-seasoned, but they do good marketing (even good bit of community-washing). Prices are ridiculous for both.

    2. I love and prefer a F&C shop burger experience, but lately within this area they are overpriced and crap. Many put too little meat in the patties and they taste like they are extended with sausage filler or something. ‘Under the Sea’ in the village isn’t the only one in the area that needs to lift their game on burgers. Seriously guys, what is another 50 cents for a decent patty and bun!!??

    3. Regarding Village atmosphere: I think Grill’d going in is better than another hairdresser or real estate agent. Also, it is just one franchise replacing another. BUT…there are too many franchises in general popping up in the village. It feels like it is becoming some sort of generic shopping mall. Flight Centre, Baker’s Delight, Vintage Cellars, Endota, Nando’s, Sumo’s, Burger Edge, the supermarkets and real estate agents, etc. I hope Pie Face never replaces Heather Dell :). Is there no room left for creativity, uniqueness and individual excellence?

    4. I think there is a good chance that many traders will benefit from Grill’d opening (one or two not so much). However, it worries me that the Village is becoming more of a tourist destination for people in other suburbs than a place for local residents. This is good for traders (although I know costs go up), however local residents lose amenity. Council really need to work to fix this imbalance.

    • Thanks, Victor, for your thoughtful remarks. I agree with them all. Heather Del? Hell yes!

      “Community-washing”? Part of their window dressing in Anderson St spruiks their “local heroes” campaign. I feel like sendin’ them a submission: Heather Dell, Feedback Cafe, Hausfrau, Corner Store, Barkley Johnson etc etc …

    • Must say, have you not noticed that Yarraville has been a busy bustling growth area for years, bet you are all happy with the property increases, well those that are not renting that is.

  6. Seddon arguably has a better bakery, grocery, fruit shop, wine bar, food outlets, pub. Living in the culinary wasteland that is Maidstone, possibly the only thing I would travel to Yarraville for is sausages. For food I’m not even sure Yarraville is better the West Footscray. I have never seen anything like the transformation in Seddon over the past few years. It is fascinating to watch (with a red in hand through the window of the wine bar.)

    Most of the village is pretty blah (Alfa, Java, the pub). Grill’d have probably made a pretty smart decision and will capitalise on the Sun Theatre traffic, which is sadly now only showing largely mainstream schlock to the masses most likely to be more appreciative of gourmet burger chains (massive sweeping generalisation I realise!). I’d expect it will do well, partly at the expense of Burger Edge.

    And Mimi, forget about Endota Spa, the biggest eyesore in the village is Jade Finger Tips (thanks Google) at number 38 Anderson.

    And BTW, I’m enjoying the Snap West site Kenny.

    • Thanks, Justin! Back in the, ahem, old days, the Sun showed movie oldies just like the Astor. I wish it still did. Agree to some extent about the Yarraville blah and the allure of Seddon. But, still, it’s our neighbourhood and I like the village feel.

      • I remember when the Sun showed old movies like the Astor! In fact I didn’t know that had changed because I haven’t been to the Sun to watch a movie for years …apart from visiting the bookshop.

      • I lived in Altona for 10 years up until a couple of years ago so I often used to visit the Sun for a treat

  7. Nathaniel, I didn’t realise that Grill’d is community-minded. I’ve changed my mind now I’ve read that. I think it’s a good thing and all part of the evolution. I remember when Bendigo Bank was one of the first “community-minded” banks to spring up and I’m happy with their service. But anyway, thanks for changing my perspective and definitely better than Maccas!

  8. Kenny, you questioned “community-washing”….think of it as greenwashing, but with a community flavour. It is in line with your comment above, and I think you are correct to be cynical. In my opinion, it is a very complex issue…however I am not overly impressed with the Grill’d approach of their $500/month payment…because that is what it looks like. It also provides a veneer of control and reward to the punters as they pop their token into the bucket. Still…at least it is some recognition of the value community support offers their business.

    Lisa (& Nathaniel?), you compared Grill’d community mindedness to McDonalds. I would argue that McDonalds recognised the value of ‘community mindedness’ and corporate social responsibility very early in their business cycle…perhaps leading the way. I suggest you check their corporate responsibility and sustainability programs to get a better understanding of just how complex this topic can be. If nothing else, you will see that such programs amount to a lot more than just monthly cash payments to community groups. Those well run with a long term vision can have immensely positive impact on the community.

    Sorry if I sound a little preachy, but the point is to be a little more critical of these types of programs, and not to forget the value offered by the smaller independents that can sometimes be a little less tangible.

    Kenny…I love your dastardly ‘local heroes’ campaign idea…I think it has legs. How about a campaign to get ‘Under the Sea’ and the rest of the local F&C’s to step up their burger quality too?

  9. I love the idea of Yarraville and I want to be in a community atmosphere. The best of Yarraville is The Village grocer and I support them as much as possible. The worst is the horrendous pub with the thugs and aggressive drunks that appear to drink there. WHY IS THIS SO. We yearn for a great pub in our neighbourhood but ride our bikes to The Steampacket in Williamstown or pony up and go to the Station Hotel in Footscray. Oh for a good pub in Yarraville. DIg a Pony is fine but it is not a pub with a sunny beer garden of my summer dreams.

    Back on topic. I am not amused by corporate, manufactured CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility). Maybe I an jaded but this is just another arm of marketing used by big business. Ask yourself do they really care? The litmus test for me is 2 things. The quality and healthiness of their food and the happiness of their staff. A non-tick for either gets a “big miss” from me. Disclosure, I am a strict vegan and I have never eaten at Grill’d or Nandos but I dislike the fact that Franchise food is designed for consistency. I don’t want consistency. I want innovative, flavourful and educational food. Maybe Abesha tomorrow night?

    • hi Tim, I am a chef and would disagree with you on the consistency issue in your above post. when dining out if you get an average meal the majority of people won’t give the place a second chance. so while I don’t like maccas I’d like to point out that really good restaurants also train their staff to get that consistency because patrons visit the restaurant for the dishes of the well known or head chef not the innovative copy of whichever chef is working that night. that said however you should be able to have consistency and the qualities on your wish list too.
      another interesting point you made is the happiness of their staff, I don’t know if their staff are happy as I don’t go there but their staff seam to be more employable after they have worked there as I have heard from a lot of businesses and companies that they will interview someone because they have maccas on their résumé, because of the training they receive there. they must be doing something right in that department, even if it is training to consistently produce consistent crap with a smile.

      cheers Susie

      • Hi Susie,
        I take your point but I think you misunderstand a little. Let me attempt to clarify a little.

        I agree that fast food “joints” have well trained staff. They are trained for efficiency in cooking (heating preprepared products made to corporate’s recipe) and serving. What they cook and how they cook it is sent from corporate. They are not allowed to innovate or even attempt to be creative. While Maccas staff may be employable as service staff due to the pretty good training, would you employ a Maccas employee for their cooking or even cheffing skills? I think not.

        I have looked at the Grill’d menu and poked my head in the door. they have nothing for me. If they did, it would be in the $12 – $14 range. I did actually go to Abesha and had “whatever you think is good on Injera” for less than this and they have really good Ethiopian beers available also! It is honest, flavoursome, unusual and a great selection. When I go again, I would be served something else, just as good (lucky I like Berberre). Each to his own but for me, there is no contest between a chain and great locally owned places like Abesha, lalibela, Sapa Hills, I love dumplings or Chef Lagenda.

        Consistent food is translated as ordinary food to me.

        Have you tried the Chinese Spicy and Barbie Kitchen (I love dumplings!)? Have the spicy eggplant or sliced potatoes in sichuan oil and onions hotpot. Same price as a production line burger and simply amazing.

  10. All that being said fair play to Grilled they are playing to packed houses Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sundays. Their take out orders are huge so whilst there are a few old die hards times are moving on! Also the chicken pomegranate salad is quite delightful!

  11. I can’t believe the amount of whinging in this thread. “Oh no, another burger joint, just what we need! More variety…how horrible, what’s happening to our neighbourhood?” Calm down guys…it’s a burger joint, not a brothel. It’s also a very successful burger franchise and their grilled chicken burgers are actually a hunky chunk of chicken breast – unlike most other burger franchises you go to. Secondly I’m going to ignore the opinion of anyone who has not bothered to try Grill’d. Even in your infinite wisdom you cannot pretend to know what this franchise has to offer if you have not tried it. Personally I like their home made relish and their crunchy chips (although I am sceptical as to whether the chips are as low calorie as their nutrition guide states, but I am yet to take along my scales and verify the portion sizes). As for the person claiming that consistent food is ordinary food – that may well be your objective oddball preference, but in the real world consumers buy your products and they expect every purchase thereafter to be of the same standard of better. Alternatively, you can achieve variety by ordering something you have not tried before! It’s a radical idea I know but each to their own. Lastly the issue of cost… I’m a university student and even I can afford Grill’d. Stop complaining! You’re giving the poms a run for their money Australia. First world problems are so burdensome!

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