LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) -- When it comes to finding a good burger in Arkansas, you don't have to look far. You’ll hear one suggestion over and over again: David’s Burgers.
David “Alan” Bubbus Jr. created David’s Burgers as a tribute to his father, David Bubbus Sr.
“Well, I was kind of born into it really. If you want to go back to the beginning, I grew up in the restaurants, I was the kid running around. It’s one of those things you always say I'm not going to do that when I grow up, ya know? I know how much work it is and how hard it is, but it's an opportunity to impact people. The food business is very personal.”
Alan Bubbus means it, too. Aside from promising quality (David’s is the only hamburger restaurant that uses US Choice Chuck and fresh potatoes for French fries), each member of the Bubbus family plays a role at the chain. Whether it’s filling in for a line cook, running the registers, doing prep work or crunching numbers in the back, David’s Burgers is a family affair.
David Bubbus Sr. has been in the restaurant business for over 50 years. He started as a butcher boy in North Little Rock, and owned and operated several restaurants in his career. He says he’s learned from his mistakes, and it’s “not easy, even if you're only making hamburgers.”
You’ll see family pictures adorning the walls that show the history and the people behind the restaurant chain, but the food is what keeps people coming back.
Customer Raymond Norwood said the burgers just taste good, and calls them the “best burgers around”.
Toni Weems agreed, adding that “the homemade fries, the home cut fries” are “very good.” Sheila Wallace says this is the only burger she’ll eat away from home.
“Our people that eat here keep our battery charged and keep us happy and excited, and it bleeds over to all of our employees” said Bubbus Sr.
“That kind of interaction is what energizes you, and keeps you going in this business and this industry, and if we lose that, I don't want to do it,” Bubbus Jr. added.
There’s no question that these men make a good team, and their love and respect for one another is visible. Bubbus Jr. describes their working relationship as a “unique opportunity.” “One of the best parts about doing the business is getting to know dad better.”
There are eight David’s locations open now. Another two are set to open soon, first in Bryant, then in Conway by the end of the year.
Right now, there are no plans to expand out-of-state. The Bubbuses say they want to perfect what they have, grow where they can, and take things one day at a time.
In the meantime, they hope to expand even more locally- possibly on Cantrell. Bubbus Jr. says developers have realized that people like local flair, and they don't want “cookie cutter franchises” anymore.
And that’s what he’s aiming for.