Chebbo’s Burgers delivers delicious make-at-home burger kits all over Sydney. Ali Chebbani has shifted from his food truck to deliver his cheeseburger and burger kits. There’s even a TikTok connection!
Chebbo’s Burgers started as a side business Ali Chebbani wanted to start while he worked in corporate finance accounting. It was intended to make extra money while also satisfying his love for burgers and food. As someone who has always been entrepreneurial, the job I interned at an office was too great to refuse. In his spare time, he ran his burger stand once per month. COVID finally struck and as a last-minute decision, I decided to offer delivery and pick-up from my driveway. (NSW government issued an okay for it to do so). I also started the TikTok account to have some fun and to gain some ‘clout. The next day I would be posting a TikTok, doing my internship remotely, and then running Chebbo’s on Fridays and Saturdays. The growth was rapid and each week was more than the previous. We eventually had to leave our driveway because it got so busy.
We established ourselves in the last lockdown, and used that as our main growth phase. However, this lockdown has been more difficult. Delta’s case numbers, combined with the high concentration of criminals in the Canterbury Bankstown region (where we are located), put me, my family, and our customers at high risk. We decided to close the food truck’s trade. Given the risk, it is almost certain that we could have put people at risk if we didn’t. So, while the truck was closed, I took the opportunity to invest my energy in other aspects of the business that I didn’t have the time for previously. These dimensions include branding, partnerships and new menu items.
Ali is active on social media. He has 682,000 followers on TikTok and 25,700 on Instagram. However, he uses both platforms in different ways. TikTok is unique because it removes the barriers that Instagram and other platforms may have put up. It allows you to share your vulnerability and openly communicate with your followers, allowing you to connect with them in new ways. It is a great tool for branding. TikTok is the best place to get people to know you, your work and why you do it. It’s a tool that I use to increase awareness and attention. I’m not selling anything or trying to sell Chebbo’s. Ali says that instead, Ali channels local followers to my Instagram where they are exposed to our products and trade. There is merchandise, including hoodies, hats, and the burger smasher.
Ali explains that the smash patty is “By far (in mine) the best way to make a patty.” The smash patty has existed since 1950s, when it was first discovered and then perfected. Science and the crust are what make a smash patty so great. Maillard reaction is a chemical reaction that occurs when sugars and amino acids are broken down during cooking. The nice crust one gets when cooking a steak, and the deep brown caramelization that gives it its flavour, is what makes it so delicious. This same principle can be applied to a hamburger, where more crust equals greater flavour. How can we make more crust? Maximising the contact area between the fatty beef mince, hot grill and the grill. The smash patty will be tender and more flavourful if it is done right and sprinkled with salt. Many people are surprised to learn that I only use freshly minced beef in my beef patties. The crust is what holds the smash patties together. There’s no need to use egg, breadcrumbs, or any other ‘binder” for them.