Five Fun Facts About Waffle House

Waffle House signs have been a beacon of hope for hungry, late-night drivers for more than 60 years. Twenty-four hours a day, three hundred and sixty-five days a year, Waffle House has been there for anyone who needs a good meal at a great price. Here a five fun facts about the iconic restaurant that you probably don’t know.

1) Waffle House Got it’s Name From the Most Expensive Item on it’s Menu

When neighbors Joe Rogers and Tom Forkner decided to start a business together and opened their first restaurant in Avondale Estates, Georgia on Labor Day in 1955, they named it after the most expensive item on their sixteen-item menu, the waffle.

And since waffles are not typical takeout food, the partners hoped the name would encourage customers to dine in and stay awhile.

Bonus Fact: Waffle House doesn’t take the names of its menu items lightly, and when an item has a name attached to it, it’s a reference to an employee. Burt’s Chili was named for an actual employee named Burt who has worked for Waffle House for over 30 years and perfected their chili recipe in the ’80s. Similarly, Alice’s Iced Tea was named after the lady who worked with the company’s tea vendor to create the perfect iced tea with just the right amount of sugar per serving.

2) Waffle House Has its Own Hash Brown Language

One of the most popular items on the Waffle House menu is their hash browns. And while they’re nearly perfect without any additions, there are many ways you can order them. Each style of hash brown has its own name. The next time you’re there try one of these variations. They’ll know exactly how you want them if you use their language when ordering. For a real treat, mix and match the terms to create your own unique platter of hash browns.

  • Smothered = sauteed onions
  • Covered = melted cheese
  • Chunked = hickory smoked ham
  • Diced = grilled tomatoes
  • Peppered = jalapeno peppers
  • Capped = grilled mushrooms
  • Topped = Bert’s Chili
  • Country = country gravy

3) Waffle House Has its Own Record Label

Waffle House has been releasing music under its own record label, Waffle Records, since the 1980s. Waffle Records has put out dozens of songs in a broad range of styles, including bluegrass, gospel, and rock n’ roll.

You can listen to Waffle House hits on the jukeboxes at many of their restaurants. But until you can get back to one of the restaurants, you can check out the video above to hear “There Are Raisins in My Toast”.

4) Waffle House Sell a Lot of Food

The Waffle House slogan is “Good food fast”, and that’s not just hyperbole. Because they can serve their food so fast, they serve a lot of it. They average 341 servings of bacon per minute, 238 servings of hash browns per minute, and 127 cups of coffee per minute. If that isn’t impressive enough, here are a few more stats for you to chew on.

  • Since 1955, they have served more than 2 million eggs
  • They serve enough coffee every year to fill eight Olympic swimming pools
  • They serve enough sausage patties every day, that if they were stacked, would be twice as tall as the world’s tallest building
  • They serve enough bacon annually to wrap around the world. That’s over 25,000 miles of bacon.

5) Waffle House is Used to Determine the Severity of Storms

Fully prepared to operate on no power and limited supplies, Waffle Houses are open 24/7, even during natural disasters. That’s why FEMA uses “The Waffle House  Index” to measure how hard a natural disaster has hit a town.

According to the index, Code Green means Waffle House is open and serving a full menu, Code Yellow means Waffle House is serving a limited menu, supplies may be low, and power may be off, and Code Red means Waffle House is closed and the area needs immediate assistance.

About Mickey Yarber 237 Articles
Editor-in-Chief Sometimes referred to as the Retro Rambler...I was born in the '70s, grew up in the '80s, and came of age in the '90s. I love to share all the fun stuff from those years via my Retro Ramblings column.

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