The former CheeBurger CheeBurger on Main Street is now home to Five Guys, a burger chain that perfectly fits the chrome-plated diner building.
Franchise owner Drew Smith wanted to open a Five Guys in Newark for nine years before the location on the corner of Main and Haines streets opened up.
“Newark is a walking city. I’ve always found it very charming and very nice. This strip is just where I wanted to be,” Smith said.
The first Five Guys opened in Arlington, Va., in 1986, and the company now has over 1,700 locations nationwide slinging smash burgers, hot dogs, milkshakes and fries. The menu also has two types of veggie sandwiches for vegetarian customers.
“There’s no freezers. Everything is fresh,” Smith said.
The 137 E. Main St. location is the company’s first in Newark, though it does have shops at the Christiana Mall, Prices Corner, Lantana Square and Governor’s Square.
Five Guys replaces Cheeburger Cheeburger, which closed during the pandemic after 10 years in Newark. Prior to that, the building was a diner known by several names over the years, including Newark Diner, Jimmy’s Diner, Jude’s Diner and Korner Diner.
Smith operates over 40 Five Guys in greater Philadelphia, New Jersey and Delaware. He began going to Five Guys regularly while working outside of Washington, D.C., often picking up burgers for his co-workers. He opened his first Five Guys in 2005.
Smith said the quality of Five Guy’s burgers, along with the simple business model, is what led him to become a franchise owner.
“In private equity, you review business models and make investments based on management teams and business models,” Smith said. “The business model at Five Guys is very simple, very straight forward, and I love the product.”
The Main Street Five Guys is open from 11 a.m. until 10 p.m. seven days a week.