The Neatest Little Paper Ever Read ®

Issue 974

Fabulous Food


• The word restaurant comes from the French phrase meaning “food that restores.” It originally referred to a rich bouillon served at inns that would restore weary travelers.

• According to the USDA, Americans spend just over $2500 per person eating away from home each year. About half of that is spent at fast food outlets, and the other half at sit-down restaurants.

• Restaurant sales total about $800 billion a year in the U.S.

• There are over 1 million restaurants currently operating in the U.S.

• Half of all adults have worked in a restaurant at some point in their lives.

• One-third of Americans’ first job was in a restaurant.

• 10% of the nation’s workforce is employed in a restaurant. That’s about 15 million people. The restaurant industry is the largest employer in the U.S. (other than government).

• 90% of restaurant managers started at entry-level in the industry.

• 80% of restaurant owners started at entry-level.

• 90% of restaurants have 50 or fewer employees.

• 70% of restaurants are single-unit operations with only one location.

• New Orleans is the most bar-dense city in America.

• With nearly 70,000 eating and drinking locations, California has the most restaurant locations in the U.S., followed by New York.

• San Francisco is the most restaurant- saturated market with 39.3 restaurants per 10,000 households.

• The country whose residents eat out the least is Russia. Russians eat out an average of 0.3 meals per month. Residents of Hong Kong eat out the most at 8.7 meals per month.

• The most popular day to eat out in the U.S. is Saturday. Second is Friday, third is Sunday. Monday is the slowest day for restaurants.

• The busiest day of the year for restaurants is Mother’s Day, followed by Valentine’s Day.

• Italian food is the most popular ethnic cuisine in the U.S., followed by Mexican, then Chinese.

• The oldest American restaurant still in service today is Boston’s Union Oyster House, founded in 1826. The oldest tavern in America is the White Horse Tavern in Newport, Rhode Island, opened in 1673.

• The oldest fast food restaurant chain is White Castle, founded in 1921.

• The grill marks on fast food burgers aren’t always from a real grill – they’re often put on by the factory that they’re shipped from.

• Soft drink prices in restaurants are marked up by 1,150% in restaurants.

• The world’s largest restaurant is in Damascus, Syria. Bawabet Dimashq Restaurant, which means Damascus Gate Restaurant, has 6,014 seats. During peak operation, 1,800 staff are employed. It opened in 2002.

• The world’s unhealthiest burger can be found at the Heart Attack Grill, Las Vegas. The Quadruple Bypass Burger has been certified by Guinness World Records to be the Most Calorific Burger, with a total of 9,982 calories. The recommended daily intake for the average adult male is 2,500 calories.

• The world’s most expensive burger can be found in Fleur de Lys at Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas. The $5,000 “Fleurburger 5000” is loaded with items such as foie gras, black truffles, and a black truffle brioche bun.