A soft open is meant for restaurants to work out the kinks before it gets busy with an official opening.
But Sean Wight and his team dealt with 1,500 customers in their first few days of the “soft open” for Farmhaus Burger at 1204 Broad St. in Augusta.
“We had a line wrapped around the door,” Wight said. “We were flipping burgers left and right, but it was good. It went well.”
Wight attributed the restaurant’s initial popularity to social media outlets like Facebook, where the restaurant had nearly 1,500 “likes” Monday night. It opened on Thursday.
The restaurant is located in the former Merry’s Trash and Treasures warehouse space. Renovations started on the 4,000-square-foot building in early September.
Wight owns and is chef at Frog Hollow Tavern on Broad Street and was formerly a co-owner of the Old Edgefield Grill in Edgefield, S.C.
Wight opened Farmhaus Burger with his wife, Krista. The two came up with the restaurant’s organic-based menu and handmade hamburger concept about two years ago after visiting similar establishments in Atlanta and Charleston, S.C.
Wight said beef, vegetables, bread and dairy products used at the restaurant will come mostly from Georgia. Some beef will be ordered from South Carolina and Alabama, he added.
“We’re using as many all-natural, local products as we can source,” he said.
The menu offers Angus beef or organic ground turkey burgers on artisan white, organic wheat or gluten-free buns. Organic veggie patties also can be ordered. Even the milk for milkshakes is organic.
Farmhaus can accommodate about 80 customers in both the dining room and counter area.
The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner Tuesday through Saturday, closed on Sundays and Mondays.
Wight is also finishing work on new apartments above the restaurant and is working on another restaurant to open next to Farmhaus in the fall. He said he’s not ready to talk about that project.