It’s just like the CBD shipping container, but with parking, indoor dining and beer. That’s perhaps the best the best way to shorthand Charboys’ upcoming outpost in Bulimba, which is scheduled to open in late July.
Late last month, owner Shravan Gautam finally closed the “temporary” container that’s been home to Charboys since early 2017. What was initially meant to be a nine-month stint before the redevelopment of 288 Edward Street became two and a half years.
But that extension had a couple of upsides – it allowed Gautam to secure a reputation with the CBD lunch crowd for flipping some of Brisbane's best burgers, and it gave him enough time to sock away money for a traditional bricks-and-mortar shop. “I’ve been actively looking since January 2018,” he says. “I’ve had a lot of great offers, especially from other big groups that manage shopping centres, but I’ve been very particular.”
Eventually he settled on the Oxford Street tenancy formerly occupied by a Shingle Inn. “I know the area fairly well," he says. "It gets busy. It’s on the outskirts of the city, there’s a lot of parking.”
Gautam says the 40-table venue will have a comfortable, semi-rustic feel and incorporate plenty of greenery. The menu will remain much the same as at the old site – custom ground wagyu beef patties or southern fried chicken slipped inside a fluffy milk bun, with a liberal squeeze of his secret special sauce (the recipe isn’t written down anywhere – “Hopefully I don’t get dementia,” Gautam laughs) – but with the addition of soft-serve ice-cream, milkshakes and beer.
Even without the luxury of a dining room, Charboys managed to build a loyal customer base in the CBD. Gautam reckons Bulimba will thrive too, but he’s encouraging city slickers to make the 10-minute drive east. “There are a fair few [CBD regulars] asking us to move back,” he says, “but maybe now they will make their way down. We have parking here.”
Charboys Bulimba is scheduled to open in late July.