In 1957, while in the twilight of their careers as Baltimore Colts in the burgeoning NFL, Alan Ameche and Captain Gino Marchetti opened up the first Gino's with their pal, Louis C. Fischer. In the mid-1960s, Tom Romano joined the company and eventually rose to the position of chief operating officer. Through the years, the crew helped innovate the restaurant industry, especially with the Gino's Giant burger in 1966, whose triple-decker design arguably went on to inspire the multipatty burgers of other national fast-food chains. Ahead of their time, the team later cobranded with Kentucky Fried Chicken to bolster their menu and widen their appeal to the public before Gino's was acquired by the Roy Rogers brand in 1982, leaving many nostalgic for one of the fast-food industry's originals. It wasn't until 2009, when Tom called up Gino to pose the idea of bringing Gino's back, that fans of the eatery could begin to quell their well-documented nostalgia in anticipation of enjoying Gino’s special recipes once again. Today, the menu boasts off-the-grill burgers, more than 100 flavors of real ice-cream shakes, and the return of the Gino's Giant, slathered in a secret sauce that was kept secret all these years by hiding it inside a modern-day football.
After Vernon Rudolph acquired a closely guarded yeast-raised Krispy Kreme Doughnuts recipe from a New Orleans pastry chef, he shared his appreciation for delectable disks by opening shop in 1937 and selling the first Krispy Kremes to grocery stores. The wafting aroma of glazed Krispy Kreme Doughnuts increased demand for the sweet treats and caused Rudolph to redesign his building's layout to include a walkup window, Rudolph was able to sell them directly to any passing customer who demanded a snack. Later, he joined forces with equipment engineers, creating baking equipment that guaranteed uniform shape and dough consistency.
Rudolph's departure to a pastry-filled afterlife in 1973 did not stop Krispy Kreme from expanding into a global sensation and continuing to innovate. In recent years, the company enhanced the treat-retrieving experience by introducing a Hot Light that, when illuminated, indicates when Krispy Kreme Doughnuts are fresh off the conveyor belt.
In 1937, something hot, delicious, and glazed rolled through the sleepy town of Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Seventy-seven years later, Vernon Rudolph's secret doughnut recipe lives on within the hundreds of Krispy Kreme locations scattered across the globe as well as within the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of American History, where Krispy Kreme is heralded as a 20th-century American icon.
The entire doughnut-making process, which customers can view up close and personal at many of Krispy Kreme?s outposts, begins with fresh ingredients and ends with the click of a fluorescent sign bearing the words, "Hot Doughnuts Now." From the original, mold-breaking glazed doughnut to newer doughnut varieties, such as chocolate ice Kreme, glazed raspberry, and glazed chocolate cake, each round dainty pairs with piping-hot coffee for a compact snack easily tucked into a pocket or clown shoe.
In 1953, an appetizing aroma began trickling out from a little storefront at 19th and Cheltenham. The smell of fresh bread, chopped onions, pastrami, and cheesesteaks wafted from the first Lee's Hoagie House, and now similar scents can be found at 17 separate locations. Food is made-to-order to ensure that each customer gets just the thing to sate cravings, whether that's a classic hoagie, buffalo wings, or anything else on the menu. In addition to walk-up orders, Lee's supplies revelers with gargantuan party hoagies—three feet of meat, cheese, and veggies that can feed up to 12.
Since its humble south Philadelphia beginnings in the 1990s, PrimoHoagies has quickly expanded throughout the region and garnered several awards on the strength of its cold-cut sandwiches, made with Thumann's brand of gourmet meats and cheeses. The shop's robust menu features dozens of specialty hoagies, many of which were created in-house rather than underwater, as is the industry norm. Sharp Italian hoagies teem with prosciutto and genoa salami, and pork Diablo hoagies marry Thumann's homestyle roasted pork with a blend of piquant spices.
Though anyone can throw together a sandwich, at Jack's Cold Cuts, sandwich-making is an art. Since 1975, the staff at the Jewish-style deli has made it their mission to create delicacies ensconced between slices of bread. They start with cuts of their more than 25 styles of meat, such as their crowd-favorite corned beef, pastrami, or house-roasted turkey. They then add smears of dressing, layers of cheese, and crisp toppings to create a range of sandwiches that showcase the flavors inherent in the meat. These sandwiches prove so addictive that they even make them in three- and six-foot sizes for parties, sporting events, and airports where you can't bring in rulers.