See what Grumps employees see each quarter by clicking on the links below!
See what Grumps employees see each quarter by clicking on the links below!
Published Feb. 14, 2014
Grumps to Partner with Support Our Soldier Program
Grumps Burleson & Grumps Cleburne, both based in Johnson County, will be partnering with another fellow Johnson County resident, Support Our Soldier, in a campaign that will begin May 2 and end July 30. The goal of the campaign is to gather items needed for our local Soldiers who are deployed and get them the supplies they want and need. Each store will collect the requested items and the items will then be picked up, put in care packages, and shipped overseas.
Donors can drop items in the provided boxes any day of the week and a list of requested items is provided below:
The Support Our Soldier program was started by Teresa Nelson, a Johnson County resident, in 2011. Her goal of the organization is to “care beyond the box,” in that she provides many other services to our soldiers abroad and when they arrive back in the states. Support our Soldier also puts on several functions throughout the year to help bring awareness to the community. To find out more about Support Our Soldier, please visit their website at www.SupportOurSoldier.com.
Grumps is proud to partner with Support Our Soldier and we appreciate your support! Thank you to all of our Armed Forces!
We look forward to seeing you all bring items in to our stores!
April is Dog Month at Grumps!
The hot dogs are back at all Grumps locations (Burleson, Cleburne, Granbury, & Stephenville)! Through the month of April, Grumps is serving up 1/4 pound all beef hot dogs that are absolutely delicious! Each dog is topped with relish, onion, and mustard and served with a small order of home-fried chips! You can add whatever toppings that you would like ranging from mayonnaise…. to queso…. to chili…. however you like to eat your hot dogs!
Don’t forget to stop in and try one! They’re only available for ONE month! April=Dog Month!
2015 AWARD ANNOUNCEMENT!
“Congratulations are in order for the entire Grumps Burgers team for earning the Talk of the Town Customer Satisfaction Award once again in 2015!!!
Collier Albright Grumps Burgers
2015 Star Rating Earned: 5
We are honored to present you with the 2015 Talk of the Town Customer Satisfaction Award. Only the highest rated businesses have been chosen to receive this award presented by Talk of the Town News and Celebration Media, and to win in consecutive years is exceptional. As a prior winner, you know the award was created to showcase companies that excel in serving their customers and earning their high ratings. Visit the following link to view your 2015 Star Rating:
City Council Gives Grumps Something to Smile About
by Kathy Cruz, Hood County News, Saturday, October 10, 2015, Pages 1A & 2A
Grumps Burgers is beefing up its operation. The Granbury City Council this week paved the way for the restaurant on East Highway 377 to expand its property to encompass about 2.5 acres. It will include using an existing barn for live music, and “overhang” for open air seating and even a “Field of Dreams” where Wiffle ball can be played. Wiffle ball is a variation of baseball is played with just a few players, using a perforated, lightweight ball. The plan also includes expanded parking, from the current 26 parking spaces to probably 48, according to Grumps owner Collier Albright. Grumps is located at 3503 E. Hwy. 377. Cleveland Road is just to the west of the restaurant, and Plaza East Court runs behind the property. The council’s actions allow for several lots to be integrated “into one uniform site for the expansion of Grumps,” according to the Community Development Director Scott Sopchak. The City Council, at its regular meeting Tuesday, approved two requests from Albright, as well as Brooks Goodson and Jeff Pickvel. Goodson and Pickvel are representatives of G Force Components & Metal Building Systems. Since G Force currently owns the property that Albright is wanting to purchase for the expansion, the company’s representatives were required to be listed with Albright on the applications with the city. Sopchak said it is common in such situations for the person wanting to purchase property to hold off on closing the deal until any needed approval from the city has been obtained.
A PLACE FOR ENTERTAINMENT
In addressing the council about his plans to offer live music for weddings, special events and general entertainment, Albright stressed that it will be “a limited house venue” on Thursday and Friday nights, aswell as Saturdays. The restaurant may possibly serve a Sunday brunch, he said. Albright added that the entertainment will be “very family friendly,” and a “last call” for drinks will go out at about 10 p.m. He said the expanded venue will be “behind a fence.” In showing a slide presentation to the council, Albright explained that an area labeled “The Cave,” which is attached to the barn, will allow for open-air seating for music and entertainment if there are “not enough people to open the barn.”
Grumps restaurants are also located in Stephenville, Cleburne, and Burleson, but Albright told the council “we want to continue to grow our brand locally.” He said that this year, sales at the Granbury restaurant are expected to hit $1.2 million – “pretty remarkable for a four-foot grill.” He said that plans are in the works to partner with bed and breakfasts “to bring people here.” “We’re excited about it,” Albright said. The council approved the re-platting and rezoning requests, allowing for the proposed expansion. Sopchak told the hood County news on Wednesday that he does not yet know whether Albright will seek permits from the city to cook and/or serve food in the barn.
The Great American Burger: Well Done as published in Lake Granbury Living magazine, Summer 2015 Issue By Andra Mayberry – Photography by Oh Snap! Photography
Most locals know about Grumps – great burgers, great atmosphere and even better parking – and don’t forget the witty quips on the marquee. The Grumps formula has simply been to perfect and serve up an American staple, the burger, and present it in a fun and laid-back atmosphere — period. There are no frills at Grumps; no complications. The only thing that has really changed since the first store was established in 2002 is the addition of three other locations in Stephenville, Cleburne and Burleson. When you walk into the Granbury location, you may notice the t-shirts on the wall and also the ceiling. You may notice the autographed 8” by 10”s on the wall of actors or singers or stunt pilots. But the license plate-lined walls, rustic back patio, old warehouse-looking concrete floors and the wood paneling are only aesthetics. Look beyond all that to the faces who oversee, prepare and deliver all those red trays and baskets.
What some folks don’t know about this burger mecca, this culinary wonder, this American institution, is the philosophy of its leadership. From the top of the corporate chain, all the way down to the entry-level service employee, you’ll find a surprising structure. Co-conspirator, Collier Allbright explains, “The guys who do the day-to-day operation stuff are the heroes, the day-to-day cooks and guest service ladies, those are the people who keep y’all coming back. All we do up here, (at corporate HQ) is help and support them. We are like an inverted org chart where our employees sit at the top and then we are here (at the bottom) to support the employees.” With a leadership philosophy like that, it’s no wonder the same faces greet us year after year. “Once we get them (employees), we tend to not lose them for a while. We have a very simple company culture. It’s to find the right people and plug them in,” Collier explains. Some Grumps employees are so good, they are plucked away by other businesses. While this might aggravate some, it’s actually a compliment to the Grumps business model. So what exactly is going on behind those walls? What kind of people make up the Grumps family? “Grumps is a collective thought process and we as a leadership team try to impress that upon our people,” Collier says. “We’ve been fortunate to have a group of long-term people we’ve promoted from within who understand our culture which is based around a real simple concept — food, service and atmosphere. We try to be good in those categories every time a person shows up.” While the average customer might see a whirlwind of activity, behind the scenes it’s a well-oiled machine. Most Grumps employees are under age 30. They vary from local kid-next-door to college graduate. But Grumps management knows it’s more than cook a burger and ship it out. In terms of leadership, “It’s kind of what we’re charged with, especially with younger people. We tell them what the expectations are and hold them accountable. And young people these days crave discipline and structure. We’ve found that most respond very well to that. They want the challenge and the responsibility and they just haven’t been given it. If we find the right young people in those positions we afford them the opportunity to move up within our company. That’s how we built our culture,” Collier explains.
THE EARLY YEARS
When asked how Grumps was born, Collier always gives his standard answer and subsequent laugh. “Grumps was born at a very early age,” he quips. Loosely named after his grandad, Gramps, the name seemed fitting for a burger joint. It was the brainchild of a man who suffered through a long-enough stint in corporate America. So why a burger joint for a guy who had zero experience in the restaurant business? “I worked for two Fortune 500 companies, back to back — consumer electronics and consumer finance — and hated it. Hated it!” Collier says. Call it what you will, but we all have it in us to either succumb to the stress or make a change and that’s just what happened. Life is better spent chasing your dreams. Collier spent years going to his choice hangouts in and around his hometown of Fort Worth and observed what seemed to work and what didn’t work. Today he uses his iPhone, but years ago he would jot down notes on restaurant napkins when he was out and about and then collect them all at home in a wastebasket. He used these notes to build his big Grumps scheme. “I would add in these pieces of what I liked and what I thought would translate well. So I borrowed concepts from some of my favorite spots and came up with an idea,” he explains. “I’d never been in the restaurant business before but my thought was, ‘I work all the time anyway. I don’t have any hobbies so where would that strength best translate?’ And I thought, ‘Let’s open a restaurant!’ I didn’t even know what we were gonna cook. I just thought, let’s come up with a name.” Enter, Grumps Burgers.
But this story isn’t about how everything just fell into place. This is about the American Dream which always requires a little bit of struggle. Initially, Collier and his crew had a plan and a contract on a building in Weatherford. But at the last minute, they decided to switch gears and come to Granbury, where the first restaurant still is today on East Highway 377. After several years of note taking, soul searching and head scratching, the plan was ready to execute. So Collier explains, “When we went to the banker he said, ‘You have no experience. This is a horrible spot because there’s no left exit (onto 377). We’re not going to loan you any money.’ So I put a second mortgage on my home, cashed in everything I had and just went for it. There was no safety net.” Ask anyone who was involved in that first half year of business and they will tell you it was a harrowing experience. “The first six or seven months were horrible. We didn’t know what we were doing,” Collier says. There were a few trial runs with close family and friends and even they told him he was crazy. In fact, the now-famous peanut bucket was added at this time because it took the inexperienced crew so long to get tickets turned over. Collier knew he had to get something for people to be occupied with or there would be a revolt. What we now see is the formation of a team effort. It takes a lot of heads and hearts committed to the success of this place. What Grumps customers can expect is attention to food presentation, price point and a hot and tasty burger. You can also expect a friendly wait staff who greets you when you come in and takes care of you after you’re seated but they won’t be overbearing. When it comes to the atmosphere, Collier says there is an expectation for the restaurant to be “clean enough to be healthy and dirty enough to be happy.”
GRUMPS AND TIP-A-COP
Grumps has hosted the Tip-A-Cop event in Granbury since 2009. Grumps proudly supports veterans and law enforcement and is honored to give back to those brave men and women who put their lives on the line every day. “I certainly have a deep level of respect for those who serve. Anyone who’s got the guts to walk up to a car and knock on a window at 10:30 at night and not know what’s on the other side of that window, has my respect,” Collier says. There also have been several other fundraisers to support local law enforcement, including one for the family of slain Hood County Sheriff’s Deputy, Sgt. Lance McLean, who was killed in the line of duty on June 29, 2013. During that fundraiser a cowboy hat belonging to Sheriff Roger Deeds was auctioned off for $1,500. Collier feels fortunate to operate Grumps in Granbury where he says, “The level of courtesy afforded to law enforcement is better than it is in towns like Fort Worth. We just try to do our part here. It’s important to me to show those folks who go out there and put it on the line every day how much we appreciate them. We do it because those men and women do something the average person can’t. We depend on them for our safety and I appreciate it. Our military does the same thing. Their job is so immensely difficult — emotionally, spiritually — I could not do it. I just respect the heck out of those folks who do it and I am very appreciative, because we need people like that.”
Loyalty means a great deal to the Grumps family. There are employees working at Grumps who have been there since Day One. Collier says, “Cowboy John, who’s our cook in Granbury has been with me since the beginning. I’ve got people with multiple years. My managers are all five-plus.” He does realize having long-standing employees is an anomaly in this industry — especially in Granbury where there seems to be a wait staff revolving door.Collier smiles and says, “You know what’s cool and what I’m really proud of? We’ve had people who have left and then come back. Yeah, they move on to greener pastures but then they’ve missed what we have. That speaks volumes for the instore management, not us (the corporate administration.)” The last 13 years have been a testament to the formula his team put in place back in 2002. “It’s been quite a challenge. I’ve been fortunate enough that my business partner (Todd) worked in the manufacturing field and was actually one of my (corporate America) customers. I loved the way he ran operations so I went to him and said, ‘I’ve got a crazy idea. I’m gonna open a hamburger joint and I want you to partner with me on it.’ And he said, ‘Okay!’ I was expecting laughter and hysteria, but he still committed,” Collier adds. Good leaders have vision, ask Collier and he will tell you, “There’s a lot of having it in your head. Translating it to actual execution is tough. When we came up with what we were gonna cook, I said ‘we are gonna do hamburgers.’ Keep it simple. I thought, ‘Anyone can make a hamburger.’ I was very wrong on that assumption. The first year was very bumpy and we still have challenges we face every day but with Todd handling the operational piece from the get go, he has been instrumental with its success,” Collier says. He refuses to take credit for any good fortune at Grumps. Collier consistently praises who he has brought to the table and shifts the focus to them. “Anything we can do to support the people that make it work is what we’re all about. I think that translates. I think our employees know we care. I think that’s a big deal,” he adds. So the next time you go to a chain restaurant, see if you can feel the same mojo you’d feel at Grumps.
IT IS CONSIDERED A SHORT POEM, ditty, slogan or even a hard, cold fact–we all scream for ice cream. Purists may sniff, however, insisting that initially, it was but the chorus of a simple melody introduced in 1925.
Here lately, however–with Blue Bell’s voluntary removal of its desserts from all outlets–many of its faithful have raised their voices. Screams have been ramped up to rafter-shaking levels.
Some folks–whimpers and moans awash in tears–maintain that nothing else will do. Alas, what if there’s no peaches n’ cream until 2016? Or a summer without Blue Bell?
Greatly marginalized, that’s what, the Blue Bell nation insists.
The company’s leaders–with a long history of getting it right–assure us that soon, all will be right again. This means millions who are “Blue Bell dependent” soon will be lifting spoons and loosening belts once more, prospective weight gain be hanged.
At some venues–such as at Globe Park in Arlington–where the Texas Rangers sometimes play baseball–signs apologize for Blue Bell’s absence; instead, a substitute is offered. (Never mind the cost; hey, it’s the old ballgame.)
Grumps–with popular hamburger hang-outs in Burleson, Granbury, Cleburne and Stephenville—has long featured Blue Bell, and its absence has challenged its creativity.
Hence, their clever signage is “heavy on the blue,” substituting “bunny” for “Bell.” Blue Bunny–by most–has been accepted without comment.
To the few grumblers at Grumps–where hens’ teeth are in greater supply than critics–owner Collier Albright says they’re “doing the best they can.” For customers who feel the substitute treat tastes about as much like Blue Bell as the car “that doesn’t look like a Buick,” customers get their money back, even if the ice cream already has been consumed.
“We’re able to get the ‘blue part’ right for now, but we think the addition of ‘bell’ will be in order soon,” Albright said.
Practicing “the customer is always right” philosophy, Grumps–introduced in 2002–continues to win top prizes.
With license plates adorning walls from wherever cars are driven, Grumps easily passes the “down home” test. Also, folks can scarf down peanuts until the world looks level. Yep, Grumps would have to add spittoons to look any more ‘country.’
Andy’s Frozen Custard is to Tyler what Grumps is to the communities it serves. Customers line up there–on foot and in the drive-through.
They, too, are out to win and keep customers–both with frozen custard treats and consistent genuine effort to deserve public trust.
Take the issue of customers with nut allergies, a condition our granddaughter Juliana has faced courageously since age two. This twelve-year-old—and others with allergies–know that too often, their allergies are misunderstood or are treated casually. Andy’s personnel are quick to open new containers, as well as avoid contact with nuts and residue.
It turns out that visits to Andy’s have led to expansion of my vocabulary.
Recently at the drive-through, I ordered for a carload of family members. I didn’t comprehend the attendant’s question; I thought it sounded like, “Do you want puppacones?” Twice I asked her to repeat the question, since I’d never heard of “puppacones” before.
“For the two pets in the back seat,” she explained. “Most pets like our free puppy cones.”
Our two rescue dogs–Sadie and Sailor–wagged their tails. Now, when we visit Tyler, they bark when in the vicinity of Andy’s.
In short, folks at the helm at businesses such as these are “good ‘uns,” a hundred percent dedicated to “meeting muster” in product satisfaction and safety.
They operate in the manner suggested on a restaurant sign on the wall at Highland Village in Alpine a half-century ago: “There ain’t hardly any business got these days that ain’t went out after.”
We could easily challenge the grammar, but the message is “right on.” Further, an adage reminds that we can “shear sheep many times, but can only skin ‘em once.” Though our dogs don’t savvy such lingo, their eyes at full sparkle and their tails at full wag tell me they regard puppy cones as the best treats they ever lapped lips over.
Dr. Newbury is a speaker in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. Speaking inquiries/comments to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Call: 817-447-3872. Web site: www.speakerdoc.com. Archived at venturegalleries.com, newbury blog.
Don Newbury is author of the humorous and inspirational When The Porch Light’s On.
Sherri Shout Out – Weekly E-News Tuesday, June 16,2015
Burleson Area Chamber of Commerce
Grumps, where Chamber Prez X 2 hang out for lunch. This week Joshua Chamber President Kim Henderson flew up Highway 174 for a Mini-Chamber Retreat. What better place to retreat to than Grumps Burgers with great cheeseburgers, sweet potato fries, baskets of peanuts and the friendliest wait staff in town. And…we even got to see Grumps Marketing Guru Shevin and her brand-new 7-Day-Old Baby Boy. Now that’s a Chamber Retreat!
On this day, I opted for the standard cheeseburger, but decided to amp it up with a jalapeño bun (.99¢ upcharge). I also was intrigued by their sweet potato fries until I saw the Dirty Fries on the list of available fry choices. Grilled jalapeño and onions smothering my fries? How can I say no? My mouth watered at the thought of it.
I grabbed my drink glass (the large is refillable for $1 on every visit thereafter) and sat down to enjoy some peanuts before my meal arrived. They point out they are not a fast food joint on a sign near the register. Hand-formed, never frozen burgers take time. Why rush perfection, I thought. Wouldn’t have it any other way.
As I enjoyed the peanuts, washed down with a tall glass of half-and-half sweet tea, I watched videos from GAC on the TVs around the room.
My Dirty Fries arrived soon and I was surprised by the mounds of jalapeño’s and onions covering them. Pleasantly surprised. I should have ordered a side of ranch dressing, I thought. But, alas, I dug in and it was pure greatness. They were no match.
A few minutes later a gentleman who I presumed to be the owner or manager arrived to inform me the supply truck did not have the jalapeño buns so my burger would require a regular bun. He was so nice and apologetic about it. “Things happen”, I said and continued my assault on the Dirty Fries.
The burger arrived soon after and I noticed it had a large toast mark from its time on the flat top. Nice touch.
I opened it up to apply liberal amounts of black pepper, a ritual I always perform. It contained a good amount of onions and shredded lettuce, some pickles and two slices of tomato. The tomatoes weren’t the deep-red color I usually like, but, they looked fine. Good deep-red-colored tomatoes are difficult to find any longer for some reason, even in the grocery stores. The patty was a medium thickness and looked to be perfectly prepared. Overall, visually, it’s a home run.
When I took my first bite, the experience was complete. It packed plenty of flavor, was juicy but not dripping with grease and had a nice melding of flavors in each bite.
Was it the best burger I had ever had? Well, no, but it’s in the top 10. Maybe top 5. It’s good.
I posted on my Facebook account that this is the kind of place that would do very well in Graham, TX, on the largest downtown square in America. The old world charm of the building, the non-nonsense approach to customer service, and the quality of the food would be in instant success. Sure, Graham has the Dairy King and KN Root Beer and I wouldn’t trade them for all the tea in China. But a place like this on the Square would be awesome and there is always room for another burger joint.
If Grump’s ever expands elsewhere, perhaps Graham and the NE Tarrant County area might make the list. Then, my options for burgers at each place I call home would be complete.
As for the Texas Burger Stop’s rating, here goes: