Katherine Samson founded and operated sandwich chain Healthy Habits for two decades before selling out. She didn’t know what to do next, so she bought a run-down cafe and sat out the front for seven weeks, people watching.
Something about the passing crowd said “burgers”. Purebred Angus beef burgers with brioche buns, to be exact. That’s what Hello Sam – a play on the surname Samson – has been selling since 2013.
The manageable Simply Sam combines lettuce, tomato and onion with the usual patty. At the other end of the spectrum, there’s Juicy Lucy – a beef patty stuffed with mozzarella, plus bacon, cheddar, pickles, onion, mustard and barbeque sauce. All appetites are catered for here.
There are also three chicken burgers, and a bean burger for vegetarians. While you wait for your order, flick through the pile of old National Geographic magazines or admire the fine grain in the recycled timber walls.
In the fridge you’ll find local and international beers, ciders, Australian wine and proper champagne. But you might give them a miss once you see the milkshakes – especially the salted caramel. There are also loaded fries, beer-battered onion rings and a breakfast fry-up available all day.
The interior is decked out with refurbished furniture, including vintage leather stools and outdoor chairs rescued from an Indian cinema.