Location, location, location: Gooch’s search for the perfect spot

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Gooch’s Burger and Chili Dive temporarily relocated to Seventh Street and Adele in Joplin to serve their signature burgers. Manager Sampson Quinonez, a freshman chemistry major at Missouri Southern, said the change to a smaller building is just what Gooch’s needs.

Brothers Gene and Troy Gooch opened the restaurant in 2008 under its original name, Gooch Brothers’ Grill, on 20th and Duquesne. Since then, the burger joint has moved locations several times before settling at its largest and recently vacated location in a new building at 20th and Duquesne.

Quinonez said the larger location put a strain on the business. Because of the large volume of customers the new building could serve, Gooch Brothers had to decrease the burger patty size from 6 ounces to 4.5 ounces to avoid running out of burgers before the end of the day.

Since moving to a smaller location, Quinonez said they were able to return to the larger patties, and that the quality of the burger depends on this size.

“With any business, small [location] is the way to go,” said Quinonez. “If you can do 100 smalls, it’ll trump 200 bigs, any day.”

According to Quinonez, the most recent move was accompanied by a name change for the business, as Gene Gooch became the sole owner before the move.

Gooch burgers are unique and delicious because of two things, said Quinonez: the 6-ounce hand-pressed quality beef from local meat provider Worden’s Meat Company, and the secret special seasoning Gene has created for their burgers and grill.

“Gene has seasonings that I don’t even know,” he said.

Quinonez also said the aim at Gooch’s is for quality, not quantity.

“It’s just going to delight your taste buds,” he said.

Gooch’s will likely move to one of its former locations and the former location of Hot Rodz, which closed November 2014, said Quinonez. He said he can’t be sure when the move will be, but expects the change to happen in around six months.

“I’m excited. I like Gooch burgers,” he said. “I know that it’s a successful business, it’s just finding the right spot.”