A new local hamburger spot that launched July 28 in North Naples, Bobby Yanks Burgers features half-pound patties served with sauces made in-house and fresh-cut vegetables on brioche buns. “We don’t mess around,” says Peter Karey, a passionate foodie who co-owns the restaurant with his wife, Stacy.
Bobby Yanks replaces Locale Eatery, which closed last year in the green-trimmed retail strip next to NCH North Naples Hospital campus at the intersection of Goodlette-Frank and Immokalee roads. Until December 2018, it was home to Sweet Caroline’s café for two decades.
Karey’s unique five-step cooking process for his burgers includes marinades, sous vide, a 24-hour ice bath, glazing and char-broiling. “I want a burger that people remember,” he says. “The burgers are the superstars. My burgers resonate with people.”
Karey has been obsessed with food since he was just a kid and has been creating burgers for 20 years now, including more than five years with sous vide. “I’ve been very successful with my burgers. I’ve always pushed the envelope with burgers,” he says. “I’m a nut job when it comes to hamburgers. It’s funny, but it’s not a joke.”
In addition to seven burger specialties, the simple retro menu of all-American comfort food includes four varieties of fries, a couple of sandwiches, chicken wings, onion rings, salad and milkshakes.
“It’s time for us to get back to some basic flavors that we like,” Karey says. “So, I do real milkshakes. Three scoops of real ice cream, a little bit of (whole) milk, no frills.” Same fanatical focus with the fries. “I do fresh-cut, Idaho Russets,” he said. “It’s a real potato and the flavor’s insane.”
Bobby Yanks is Karey’s 38th restaurant, he said, but his first endeavor here. All the others were part of burger chains and souvlaki stores and other restaurants in Athens, Greece. “I just moved here from Greece,” he says. “I was an American living abroad for 24 years.”
Although he is of Greek descent, Karey was born in San Francisco and considers himself more American than Greek, so you won’t find Greek cuisine on his local menu. “I felt very out of place there. I feel very at home here,” he says. “I wish I had found out about Naples sooner.”
Bobby Yanks Burgers, 11121 Health Park Blvd, Suite 300, is open 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday, but closed Mondays.