Matt Yeast, owner of Burgher Burger 40475 restaurant on Main Street in Richmond, will celebrate his six month anniversary of opening his doors in 15 days, with efforts to try and become the city's funky, hangout spot for everyone.
"Six months on Main Street feels like two years, it's a big deal because there is not a lot of traffic down here," Yeast said.
Scattered over the music themed restaurant are antique toys and knick-knacks to try and tweak the atmosphere, giving off a welcoming and fun vibe.
"It's really about community, that is what I'm trying to do," he said. "I want to be a place where everyone can come in, hang out and have a good time. It's not about politics or race or anything else that is going on, it's about everyone getting together and having a good time."
The Richmond store is an extension of the first location called Burgher Burger 15642, which opened in 2017 in Irwin, Pennsylvania, a suburb right outside of Pittsburgh -- which earned the extra "H" in the restaurant's name.
The original Pennsylvania restaurant began in April 2017 after an owner, Bryan Henderson, attempted to offer a "food junkie" locale, but with burgers as opposed to his other establishment, which serves pizza.
Yeast, who met Henderson in Lexington while working at a Lexington restaurant, started to brainstorm how to extend Burgher Burger to Richmond.
They settled on the downtown location for several reasons, occupying what was formerly home to The Kitchen, because of existing infrastructure and a good price.
"We're a smaller town with a college community, that is what we are trying to hit," he said. "And so the location was here, the price was right and the college was here."
He reported that things are "going good" but that with college students being gone during the summertime, things have been slower.
Although he hopes to target students, he says he sees people of all types -- families, professionals and out-of-towners.
"Everyone seems to be loving it, we're killing it on Facebook," he said. "We are going to try and start doing some more community events, and try to hit the students, go from there and increase traffic.
"I didn't really know the market being from Lexington. Now that I have a little bit under my belt I can figure out where to target," he added.
Yeast has a lot of plans for the future, including offering catering, trivia and opening a lounge in the back room with a pool table, dart boards, TVs and couches. Soon, the burger joint will also earn their Kentucky Proud certification.
With renovating the back room to a lounge, he wants to offer more space and create an area where people can hang out.
"So you can have the families (in the front) and if people want to come hang out and drink, that way they aren't taking up the tables -- win-win," Yeast said.
As a musician himself, Yeast wants to introduce an open-mic night or jam sessions. He also said that if a customer has their music on a Spotify account, he can play it over the restaurants loudspeaker to support local artists.
Continuing the theme of community support, he features four beers on tap, two of which are locally based from West Sixth Brewery in Lexington and Dreaming Creek Brewery in Richmond. Yeast stressed the importance of local businesses working together for everyone to thrive.
"We've been working with a lot of local businesses...everybody downtown is a really solid community, you know, they all realize that the more people we can draw down here, everyone wins," Yeast said.
He recently installed a full bar in which he aims to create signature cocktails, centered around music themes. One idea is a Jimi martini -- after Jimi Hendrix -- that would be "a mixture of Hendrix vodka and tonic with a lime," he said. "So we try to keep that theme."
In further attempts to get people in the door, kids eat free on Mondays and a daily happy hour is from 3 to 6 p.m. He currently has a lunch special in which customers can purchase a quarter-pound burger with fries and a drink for $7.88, and to add bacon for $8.88.
According to Yeast, the most popular food items at the burger joint are the "Jackson's bacon cheeseburgher," the "Junkman cheeseburgher" and philly cheesesteak sandwich.
Burgher Burger is open Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. and is closed on Sunday.
While he has entertained the idea of being open on Sunday to incorporate Sunday football, he is unsure of how busy downtown is that day, and is unsure if it would generate more foot traffic.
Yeast noted that additional parking is located at S. Third Street and Water Street behind the Glyndon Hotel.
For more information, visit their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/BurgherBurger40475/.