New restaurants made for burger, pancake fans

VIENNA, W.Va. – Two popular national restaurant chains are coming to the Mid-Ohio Valley.

Five Guys Burgers and Fries and IHOP are placing stores in the area.

Five Guys, which has been running advertisements for managers and assistant managers, told officials they plan to open a store at 702 Grand Central Ave. in Vienna, next to Walmart.

IHOP has made plans to place a store in the area, but has not yet disclosed a location.

Classified advertisements for the IHOP, seeking employees and management positions in the area have been running in The Parkersburg News and Sentinel since last week. Officials in Wood and Washington counties, including Parkersburg, Marietta, Belpre and Vienna, have no records of a proposed IHOP store in the area. The ads are tied to Sharp Holding Inc., an independent operator of IHOP franchises in Virginia, Maryland and West Virginia.

In 2003 Sharp agreed to develop eight new IHOP restaurants over the next nine years in West Virginia. IHOP has store locations in Charleston and Clarksburg.

Messages left for Sharp Holding Inc. President Robert Sharp seeking comment were not returned.

There are Five Guys locations in Beckley, Huntington, Charleston, Morgantown and Ranson. According to its corporate website, Five Guys has been a Washington, D.C., area favorite since 1986.

In 2003 Five Guys started offering franchise opportunities. And in less than 18 months the company had sold options for more than 300 units.

Today, there are more than 1,000 locations nationwide and more than 1,500 units in development. The store’s burgers and fries are often ranked among the best among national chains.

Vienna Mayor Randy Rapp said he was unaware of the Five Guys development, but happy with the news.

“That’s great news,” he said. “I ate at one in Huntington. They are great. It’s good food.”