Micah Camden didn’t need to ring the cow bell on Friday at Little Big Burger, Camden calculated 20 customers an hour for Day One at his flashy fast food spot at 122 N.W. 10th Ave. By noon, he says, half of Portland showed up. The overwhelming crush of burger maniacs might have been an ego boost even for the confident indie restaurant lord and media magnet. Were if not for that plugged hood. “I totally botched my first few hours, “ reports Camden. “The whole place was a smoke bomb.”
Camden says he got his groove back later in the day, serving 600 by closing. By the end of the weekend—and his estimation—more than 1,500 customers had vied for Little Big Burg’s 30 seats and chomped through his $3.75 burger, prompting him to take a va-cay on Monday. “I had my ass beat. It was my biggest weekend in five years. I needed a break.”
The hungry and curious were back on Tuesday. “I can’t believe what’s happening,” Camden says. “I’m turning people away at 10 p.m. I can’t bottle my homemade ketchup fast enough.”
Less than a week in, ideas are sizzling, including a late-night “adult happy meal” with a burger, fries and can of beer for $6. Doesn’t get more Portland than that.