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Burgers, shakes mainstay at new Ralphie's restaurant

Couple realizes business dream

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Posted: Saturday, August 18, 2012 9:05 am

MOSES LAKE - Move over Moses Lake establishments, there's a new burger joint in town.

Business owner Ralph Combs, along with his wife Anissa, saw their dream of providing affordable burgers and shakes to the area become reality when the duo officially opened the doors to Ralphie's on August 3.

"It's always been a goal," said Combs of venturing out as a restaurateur.

Combs, who operated a local Dominos franchise for 22 years, knew he wanted to eventually open his own establishment and he knew he wanted to open it in Moses Lake.

Combs didn't spend years of planning for nothing. He wants Ralphie's to become synonymous with good burgers in town.

All of Ralphie's burgers are 1/2-pound patties and all under $10, said Combs. The exception is their Burger Platter, a two-pound masterpiece meant for sharing.

Combs said the restaurant's mushroom burger and teriyaki burger are quickly becoming clear favorites. Both sandwiches come with all the standard toppings and are accompanied by French fries, curly fries, seasoned fries or sweet potato fries.

Ralphie's also offers a twist on the traditional children's menu found at other establishments.

"I hated going to restaurants and not being able to order smaller portions because I wasn't a kid," said Combs.

His frustration eventually led to Ralphie's "young and young at heart" menu. Customers who don't want the larger portions of the restaurant's main menu can order from the kid's menu without any grief, he said.

Combs explained that as an experienced restaurant patron himself, he knows how not to treat customers.

"A lot of restaurants here lack personal service," he said. "They have good customer service but not personal service."

The difference? According to Combs, it's the way you talk to people.

"Franchises treat you like another number... here's your food, goodbye," said Combs.

At Ralphie's, he makes sure guests are treated practically like family. Combs said he trained his servers specifically to start conversations with their diners that go beyond typical waiter-customer exchanges.

And creating that perfect family atmosphere for patrons won't be too hard for Comb's team since his staff includes his three children as well as his nephew.

Although the restaurant has only been open for a little over a week, Combs said he is already thinking of ways to expand the establishment.

"Our main goal right now is to start serving breakfast," Combs said. The restaurant's morning menu should be launched within the next six months.

Inspired by eating challenges made popular on channels like The Food Network, Combs said he will also be unveiling Ralphie's very own burger contest sometime in the next two weeks.

Customers daring enough to take on the challenge will have to consume the Burger Platter's two-pound burger, a 20-oz milkshake and a plate of fries within 30 minutes. Those who succeed get their meal paid for as well as a Ralphie's T-shirt, he said.

Combs also said he hopes to have a second Ralphie's location open for business in about five years.

In the meantime, Combs said Moses Lake residents can count on Ralphie's to provide good food at an affordable price, and like their sign advertises, "lotsa' fun!"

Ralphie's is located at 323 S. Pioneer Way and open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday and until midnight Friday and Saturday.

  • Discuss

Welcome to the discussion.


  • Spydergirl posted at 2:27 pm on Fri, Jul 5, 2013.

    Spydergirl Posts: 1

    Went to Ralphie's today for the first time. Service was wonderful and the food was great! There was a miss comunication about my egg burger, the egg is over easy so when i cut into it the yoke ran everywhere. I didnt realize when i ordered, that the egg would be like that (i cant stand runny eggs) but the server was great and super understanding and brought me a new burger with out a fuss! Thank you jessica! I have herd mixed things about it and I decided to try it for myself. Keep up the great work! I really enjoyed my meal and visit.

  • ralph combs posted at 11:34 pm on Wed, Sep 5, 2012.

    ralph combs Posts: 1

    we opened our doors 4 weeks ago, yes we have made mistakes, and yes we have made some bad ones, i have tried to contact the people who have left comments, so i can take care of the issues, in the perfect world i would have opened the restaurant with completely trained people, that did not need a bit of training. all i ask is that before you decide if we are bad or good, please come in and see for yourself.
    thank you
    Ralph Combs

  • The Observer posted at 4:16 pm on Sat, Aug 25, 2012.

    The Observer Posts: 70

    How are establishments supposed to "move over" and does this mean they should close?

  • Domanost posted at 10:13 am on Fri, Aug 24, 2012.

    Domanost Posts: 93

    ANOTHER burger joint!!!??? Don't get me wrong I love love Hamburgers, every place offers hamburgers I can go to a Mexican restaurant and can get good hamburger. You have to have some of the best service to make this fly. From what I hear like to posts below the service isn't great. I don't what they are going to do, most good servers in town are already employed and have been pampered by the places they work. Sure they are going to get the usual circuit of nomadic servers that seem to always be making the rounds around Moses Lake. Hope for the best was just hoping for something more original.

  • RTG posted at 12:12 pm on Wed, Aug 22, 2012.

    RTG Posts: 3

    The food and service was great! Prices were right on for our area. We will go back!

  • Spicie posted at 8:41 pm on Sat, Aug 18, 2012.

    Spicie Posts: 1

    Service was terrible, asked for tea and got water, Chicken, bacon ranch sandwich had no bacon, bun was burnt, and it only had ranch... WILL NEVER GO BACK!! [sneaky]

  • Bobby Hughes posted at 8:04 pm on Sat, Aug 18, 2012.

    Bobby Hughes Posts: 1

    The service was great but our burgers were burnt the sauce was bad other people's burgers had hair in their burgers and a corndog was burnt will never go back