I had McDonald’s for lunch today and in between bites of crispy, deep-fried goodness I stopped to wonder about the origins of our favourite comfort foods. So I looked into it – quite interesting!
Firstly, Colonel Sanders’ first name is “Harland” – which is funny because I never even thought of him having a first name before 😛
The first “KFC” – called Sanders Court & Café, opened in 1930 and was actually located in the front section of a petrol station in (you guessed it) Kentucky. As word got out and demand started to increase, he capitalized on its popularity, using a a pressure cooker (instead of the original iron skillet) as a more efficient way to meet demand.
The original concept for McDonald’s was a BBQ drive-through restaurant in California in 1940, which was soon abandoned in favour of a 9-item menu of various hamburgers, milkshakes, fries and pies. McDonald’s sure has come a long way since then!
Burger King was born in 1954, the brainchild of two brothers. The Whopper, their second brainchild, arrived in 1957, when they stumbled upon the concept of flame grilling their beef. The first Whopper sold for… wait for it… 37 cents!
Pizza Hut was named with a combination of what it sold and what the store actually resembled (i.e. a “hut”). Opened with just $600, the menu had pizzas in two sizes only, all of them thin-crust. Thick crust (the “pan pizzas”) were not introduced until 1980!
Subway opened in 1965 as “Pete’s Super Submarines,” named after one of its co-founders who was also a physicist! He lent his partner (who was 17 at the time) $1000 to start up the business. It got so popular they opened a second store, but soon after dropped the “Pete’s” as people were mishearing the store’s name, saying “Pizza Marines” and asking for pizzas instead of subs!
What’s your favourite fast food outlet? I’d love to know any other funny/humble origins!