Burger concept from YouTube’s ‘MrBeast’ is opening brick and mortar in South Tampa

UPDATE: It's not the first brick and mortar.

click to enlarge MRBEAST BURGER
MrBeast Burger

YouTube superstar MrBeast is known for his gaming, elaborate stunts and philanthropic endeavors like raising $20 million to plant trees or car donations. He added restaurant entrepreneur to his resume last year when he partnered with Virtual Dining Concepts to start a ghost kitchen concept—and it looked like he was bringing a MrBeast Burger brick and mortar to Tampa.

Located at 5229 S MacDill Ave. in the Interbay neighborhood, the location appeared to be the first brick and mortar for a delivery-only concept operating in hundreds of U.S. cities via an app available on iOS and Android.

There are social media profiles for MrBeast Burger concepts in Illinois, Nevada and New Jersey, but none of them—save for a food truck in El Paso—appear to have the kind of brick and mortar setup initially advertised by a Facebook page called “MrBeastBurgerTampa.”

“We are so excited! Getting ready to set up our first Tampa location with pick up and outdoor seating! Stay tuned!,” it says on the Tampa concept’s Facebook page.

In an email to Creative Loafing Tampa Bay, a rep for Virtual Dining Concepts (VDC) said that the Tampa location is not MrBeast Burger's first brick and mortar because the concept is delivery only. "We are in touch with the restaurant in Tampa that has created the Facebook page as well to ensure we're not confusing any diners and consumers," the rep wrote.

Before the weekend was up, the Tampa MrBeast Burger page had changed its name to Revolve Kitchen South Tampa.

“We changed the name because we will be offering our own menu as well as our MrBeast Burger menu. We want to give people the option to get some other creative takes on american cuisine beside burgers, and the MrBeast Burger menu limited us there,” the page wrote. “So now we will have some really great alternatives to just burgers.”

Still, the updated page said, “Soon you'll be able to enjoy MrBeast Burger in person on our outdoor Beast size patio!”

After this post published, Jim Fucetola, owner of the South Tampa MrBeast kitchen told CL that he has a New Jersey restaurant that's been working successfully with VDC since November 2020.

Fucetola explained that kitchens that produce MrBeast burgers have the option to allow pick up in person, but not all take up the option "because most of them don’t want their current customers to know that they are also running a Mr. beast burger out of their location." For instance, Fucetola's restaurant in New Jersey only delivers its MrBeast burgers.

The LLC for the Tampa location is Revolve, and chef Michael Langas CEC, who's worked at Pittsburgh's Duquesne Club will act as no. 2 in the company. The MrBeast branding will stay on the customer facing end of the Tampa concept. Tablets mounted outside will allow folks to walk up and order, too.

"We will have two covered outdoor patios with seating capacity for 70 plus ample parking," Fucetola added. "The reason we changed the Facebook page is because as per our agreement with VDC we can’t have our own social media presence there is only supposed to be one MrBeast Burger fb, ig etc. But we can have our own social media presence and promote the brands from VDC for our location that’s not a problem."

Fucetola also said that Tack United was hired to complete a large scale mural on the property.

The origins of a MrBeast Burger restaurant go back to last year when the YouTube star—22-year-old James Stephen "Jimmy" Donaldson, aka MrBeast (pictured above)—literally paid people to eat at his new restaurant, which took over a vacant storefront in his hometown of Wilson, North Carolina. His ghost kitchen, delivery-only concept launched shortly thereafter with the help of Virtual Dining Concepts, which also has partnerships with Mario Lopez, "Jersey Shore" star Pauly D and rapper Tyga.

Hospitality magazine QSR wrote that when Virtual Dining Teams up with a celebrity, it takes charge of market research  including what foods are popular in certain areas.

"But influencers play a big part in creating the menu and branding. For both Virtual Dining Concepts and its partners, these brands are a prolonged relationship rather than a one-off deal," the magazine added.

There's currently a portal and sales pitch explaining how folks can use their kitchen facilities to bring MrBeast Burger product in. On it, MrBeast Burger says anyone who brings MrBeast Burger into their kitchens can "reach 46M+ MrBeast fans" with "simple setup, zero upfront fees, and no lengthy contracts." The 

In Tampa Bay, kitchens in Brandon, Clearwater, Lithia, Riverview, Sarasota and Tampa have all bought in and started delivering MrBeast Burger product not just through the proprietary app, but also through DoorDash, Uber Eats, GrubHub, Postmates and others. The pitch portal offers "30% profit" with "no up-front fees, no long-term commitment" with the ability to cancel anytime.

"With MrBeast Burger, you’re not just providing a burger option from you existing restaurant’s kitchen. You’re tapping into the infamous YouTube philanthropist’s 46M+ following and providing delivery-only foods that customers in your area are searching for right now," the portal adds.

Fucetola said start up costs to be a MrBeast kitchen start around $2,000. "But they take 30% of your revenue. So it’s like a reverse Franchise where you pay more overtime instead of up front," he added.

Some restaurateurs have quipped that the sound of an Uber Eats order coming into the kitchen is the "sound of breaking even," and some groups have gone as far to warn that delivery app companies are predatory entities that could eventually use all of the data they gather against small mom-and-pops, so it would be interesting to see how the MrBeast concept is different.

Virtual Dining Concepts would not provide specific information on how MrBeast Burger works with local proprietors and the financials of the deals it makes.

MrBeast Burger’s limited menu has several patties on deck like the “Beast Style” burger, available in a double or triple. Other items up for grabs include chicken sandwiches, fries, and a chocolate chip cookie for dessert. Pricing starts at $1.99 for drinks up to $10.99+ for combos.

Follow MrBeast Burger’s Tampa concept on Facebook and Instagram to find out when it officially opens.

click to enlarge MRBEASTBURGERTAMPA FACEBOOK
MrBeastBurgerTampa Facebook

UPDATED: 4/29/21 2:45 p.m. Updated with more information on how Virtual Dining Concepts works with MrBeast Burgers to get local kitchens setup to deliver product and to make clear that Tampa's MrBeast Burger is delivery-only. Then updated again when the Facebook page changed its name, and updated yet again when the Tampa owner reached out to CL via email.

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About The Authors

Ray Roa

Read his 2016 intro letter and disclosures from 2022 and 2021. Ray Roa started freelancing for Creative Loafing Tampa in January 2011 and was hired as music editor in August 2016. He became Editor-In-Chief in August 2019. Past work can be seen at Suburban Apologist, Tampa Bay Times, Consequence of Sound and The...
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