Fast Food

Origin of the hamburger | WYTV

Len Rome’s Daily Feature of Little Known Facts

(WYTV)- The hamburger, a very popular treat, was it first cooked up in Hamburg, Germany?

Well, there would be no hamburger today without Hamburg, that’s true.

Author George Motz wrote a book called Hamburger America and he says the hamburger we know today wasn’t created in Germany. What came from Hamburg was more like steak, a beef patty served with gravy, onion and potatoes.

Motz says the burger we know was invented right here in America. The evidence seems to point to the burger appearing at state fairs across the country, especially in the Midwest between 1870 and 1890.

German immigrants were arriving at the same time, bringing what they called steak in the Hamburg style. We took it and slapped bread around it.

What about the cheeseburger? That seems to have come from southern California in the early 1920’s.

Here’s the story: an employee named Bob Wain worked at a restaurant called the Rite Spot in Pasadena. Bob claimed that he grabbed a slice of American cheese one day and slapped it across a burger patty to cover up a burned spot.

And everyone loved it.

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