Monday, October 13, 2008

My Town Monday: In-N-Out Burger

My local In-N-Out Burger

In-N-Out Burger was California's first drive-thru burger joint. It opened on October 22, 1948 in the LA suburb of Baldwin Park, CA. The owners were a husband-wife team: Harry and Esther Snyder. It's still a family-run business with no plans for franchising.

The Snyder's two sons, Guy and Rich, learned the ropes from the ground up. When Harry died in 1976, there were 18 drive-thru locations. Rich, age 24 years, took over as pres and expanded to 93 locations before dying in a plane crash in 1993. Guy, as pres, expanded the company to 104 locations before dying in 1999 from an overdose of painkillers (sorry. I hated to add that sad detail to a pretty upbeat post). Then, in 2002, the mother and co-founder, Esther, became president. Now, there are about 202 restaurants with locations in California (by far the bulk of them are still here), Arizona, Nevada and even one in Utah.

How does In-N-Out do it? Well, this is their business philosophy: "Give customers the freshest, highest quality foods you can buy and provide them with friendly service in a sparkling clean environment." (from the In-N-Out Burger website)

Guess which two items you'll never find at an In-N-Out Burger restaurant? A freezer and a microwave.

Also, In-N-Out historically pays their employees more than minimum wage. It was up to $10/hour in California as of Jan. 2008.

Lousy angle. Sorry. But the drive-thru, as usual, was busy. There were only so many cars I felt comfortable hopping in front of to get the shot.

In-N-Out still has the same menu that they started with in 1948: hamburger, cheeseburger, double-double (double meat, double cheese), fries (from fresh potatoes), shakes (from real ice cream) and fountain drinks.

AND AND AND... there is also a SECRET MENU. No kidding. It's common knowledge here in SoCal. You can order from the secret menu, and no one will even blink an eye. And, because I want my blogger friends to be in the know in case they're ever in our great golden state, here's the secret menu.

Busy bee In-N-Out Burger workers who are, no doubt, wondering about the nutcase with the camera!

And now for another bit of In-N-Out Burger trivia: Wrappers, cups and antenna toppers all....contain the book, chapter and verse numbers to bible references!

I have eaten at In-N- Out Burgers at least a bajillion times. How have I never noticed this? I was forced IN THE NAME OF RESEARCH to go to In 'n Out today. And guess what was on the bottom of my fountain drink cup? John 3:16. Who knew?

Please visit Travis Erwin, the guy who spearheads My Town Mondays. He'll have a list of links to other Mondayers.


AND IN HUGELY EXCITING BREAKING NEWS: Child #3 and his team won a very very important water polo game today. So, they're off to Ann Arbor, Michigan to compete in the annual Speedo Cup for eighth grade and unders. It'll be the 12 top water polo teams from across the nation. Congratulations to Child #3 and the rest of his team. And can I just say...that was one incredible goal, kid!


keri mikulski :) said...

Congrats to Child #3!

I've heard of In and Out Burger, but I've never actually seen one.. Thanks for the info and the secret menu. :)

David Cranmer said...

I will keep my fingers crosssed over the water polo game and great post on In-N-Out Burger. They are smart to avoid franchising. That destroys many a good restaurant.

Rebecca Hickman said...

My husband loves In&Out. I've never tried it for myself because the lines always look too long. (By always, I mean the three times I've been to CA.)

What wonderful news about your son!

Jason said...

Congrats to Child #3 and good luck.

A SECRET menu! That's awesome. If ever I go to California, I'm so ordering from that!

Charley said...

Good job to your son. I live in Massachusetts, so no In-N-Out Burger for me, but I always make it a treat when I visit relatives on the West Coast. Krispy Kreme is another treat for me. They sell them in grocery stores here now, but I refuse.

Bina said...

I think I have heard of this place before, but as far as I know, we don't have them in TN!

debra said...

Kudos to #3 and his team-----and to the parents who support them.

There is a real burger place in the Akron area. You get served in your car---real food.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Now I know I am going to want a burger for lunch. But not one this good around here.

Stacy Nyikos said...

Secrte menu???? Now I'm going to have to travel to San Diego again just to order from it!


Mary said...

Congrats to your son and his water polo game.

I've never heard of In&Out Burgers, but it's been a long time since I've been to CA. Your post gives me another reason to get out there soon.

Alyson (New England Living) said...

Yea for child #3!!

My husband and I both miss In-n-Out. He's a shake snob and loves their shakes. I love their fries!

Patti said...


and go polo peeps!

Sally Lawton said...

Congrats to Child #3.

Oooh, I'm really craving a burger now. That place looks great! x

Travis Erwin said...

Very coll place. One of these days I hope to try that double double or the 3 X 3.

And congrats to your kiddo.

Reb said...

Oh, it sounds wonderful. I gave up eating fast food burgers a long time ago because they are all just yucky. If I ever get down to CA, I will have to try one of theirs though.

Congrats to Child #3!

Anonymous said...

In-and-Out Burger is a MUST when we go visit our SoCal family....


Caryn Caldwell said...

I wish we had one near us. Instead, I have to wait until I'm in a town with one. I'd never heard about the secret menu, though. That's cool. Though, really, who orders a burger with four patties? I'm lucky to fit a single with everything in my mouth.

ChrisEldin said...

Hi Barrie,
I'm over from Travis's blog. I love this post! The secret menu is a scream!

And I'm glad you did your job for the MTM series in getting those photos for us!


Amy said...

Now that all my mac 'n cheese has finally digested (haha), I'm craving a burger after reading this! It sounds so good.. mmm

And yes, I am still in for October Ovation! So on Wednesday, I just write about who I admire the most and post it on my blog, right? Just wanted to make sure so I don't end up goofing up (as usual lol). I'm excited to read everyone's blogs :)

Barbara Martin said...

Reading about those great burgers made me want one; but seeing as I'm almost across the continent it will have to wait.

Congratulations for Child #3. That's quite the accomplishment.

When you return to Toronto, send me an email and I'll take you to lunch at one of the restaurants at the Distillery District. My email is tucked into my profile.

Barrie said...

Barbara, you are such a sweetheart!

lyzzydee said...

Not heard of them but they do look good!!! Hope to be in your neck of the woods to try them one day!!

Angela said...

Now I want one. I wonder where I would go to find one.

Congrats to #3

Now off to bake some chocolate chip cookies.