The latest buzzy restaurant turnout wasn’t for a big-name chef or a trending mash-up pastry like the cronut. It was for the viral YouTuber MrBeast, who opened his first physical burger restaurant this weekend. On Sunday, about 10,000 superfans swarmed a mall in New Jersey for a taste, despite recent Twitter images of MrBeast’s incinerated-looking burgers appearing less-than-stellar. Live coverage of the event depicted what looked more like a concert than a burger joint opening. Thousands of people packed into the shopping complex over multiple floors. They chanted. They waved handmade signs announcing that they’d driven 15 hours just to be there. They draped themselves over balconies like wet laundry to catch a glimpse of their icon.
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Jimmy “MrBeast” Donaldson’s extreme stunt videos have amassed more than 100 million cult subscribers over the past decade. Like a young Johnny Knoxville, the 24-year-old star is known for his costly experiments: a real-life Squid Game reenactment (minus the killing) and a troubling simulation titled “I Survived A Plane Crash.”
Capitalizing on his online fame, the YouTuber opened MrBeast Burger in December 2020. The delivery-only restaurant chain, which operates out of partner kitchens—like a random Atomic Wings in Queens, New York, and a Dirty Bones burger joint in London—has thousands of locations worldwide. After reportedly raking in $100 million in just seven months, this weekend’s opening marks his first brick-and-mortar location at the American Dream Mall in Jersey—a fitting location for a guy who’s really pulled himself up by the digital bootstraps.
The restaurant opened at around 11 a.m. on Sunday, but some customers had been waiting all night. “I stopped by the mall tonight to visit my old coworkers and there are people ALREADY LINING UP TO SEE MR. BEAST AT THE MR. BEAST BURGER,” one user tweeted on Saturday. Shop owners working the Labor Day weekend lamented the crowds. “Respectfully if this man does not give me a tesla i am going to be feral bc im actually going to die working tmrw,” one employee tweeted. Fans, on the other hand, were feeling pretty relaxed. Someone led an impromptu stretch class at 4:30 a.m. and another person made some art.