All this talk about “fishy” comments yesterday got me to thinking…..
Another great American Fast Food chain is Long John Silvers. According to their website, www.ljsilvers.com , the restaurant was inspired by Robert Louis Stevenson’s “Treasure Island”.
The first restaurant opened in 1969 in Lexington, Kentucky, as a response to other fast food chains which were becoming popular at the time – specializing in quick service seafood. The chain began as a division of Jerrico, Inc., which also operated Jerry’s Restaurants, a chain of family restaurants which also began in Lexington, KY throughout the Midwest & South.
In the UK, fish and chips became a cheap food popular among the working classes in the second half of the nineteenth century. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fish_and_chips Deep-fried “chips” (slices or pieces of potato) as a dish, may have first appeared in Britain in about the same period. There was a mention of “chips” in Charles Dickens’ “A Tale of Two Cities” (1859) “Husky chips of potatoes, fried with some reluctant drops of oil”.
Earlier Long John Silvers restaurants were known for their Cape-Cod style buildings, blue roofs, small steeples, and nautically-themed decorations such as seats made to look like nautical flags. Most early restaurants also featured separate entrance and exit doors, a corridor-like waiting line area, food heaters that were transparent so customers could see the food waiting to be served, and a bell by the exit which customers could “ring if we did it well.” Many of these buildings had dock-like walkways lined with pilings and thick ropes that wrapped around the building exterior.
Until its bankruptcy in 1998, Long John Silvers was a privately owned corporation. It was then acquired by Yorkshire Global Restaurants, which also owned A & W American Food Chains. In March 2002, Yorkshire was purchased by Tricon Global Restaurants, Inc. which had spun off from Pepsico, Inc. Tricon owned Taco Bell, Kentucky Fried Chicken, and Pizza Hut worldwide. Tricon then changed their name to Yum Brands, Inc.(NYSE: YUM)
Until then, Long John Silvers had served Coca-Cola Products. Once the acquistion by Yum Brands was in effect, they switched to Pepsi. Currently, Long John Silvers has more than 1200 restaurants worldwide – and more than 200 additional locations in Yum Brands, Inc. multi-brand restaurants. Nearly four million customers each week “throw boring overboard”.