Chip's Hamburgers

Discussion in 'Restaurant Reviews' started by Ken Anderson, Oct 15, 2018.

  1. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    This is not so much a review as a reminiscence, I guess, given that I haven't seen a Chips Hamburger place since they closed the one in Menominee, Michigan in 1970 or 1971, shortly after a McDonalds was built across the street.

    Chips was the first fast-food place I had ever seen, although I don't think it was called that at the time.

    Their basic burgers were good, and they were only 16-cents apiece, which was very cheap even in 1970. They were kind of on the smallish size so people would generally get two of them, though.

    My understanding was that it was a regional chain, found only in Wisconsin, except for the one in Menominee, which was literally just across the river from Wisconsin. I think it was started by someone who once played for the Green Bay Packers.

    The talk about McDonalds got me thinking about Chips, so I thought I'd go looking for them online.

    First, I came across the Burger Wisconsin Chain, owned by the Chip Group, but operated in New Zealand. They apparently operate a chain of burger places throughout New Zealand. So I thought, that's weird, that they would move to New Zealand. That's probably not them, though.

    Then, I came across Chips Old Fashioned Hamburgers, but that seems to be a Texas chain and, despite the fact that they use an "old fashioned" label, they were established in 1981 and the one in Menominee had already closed a decade before that. They may have good burgers, but that's not the one I was looking for.

    Next, and finally, I think I found them, still in Wisconsin. There is a website for Chips Hamburgers in Merrill, Wisconsin. Although there is nothing on the site that would indicate that it is a chain, however small, Restaurant.com tells me that there is a Chips Hamburgers in Marshfield, Wisconsin as well, and they have the same logo as the Merrill place and, as far as I can remember so far back, I think the design of the building and logo are the same, or similar. So, I guess they're still in business, still small, and still only in Wisconsin. I'll bet they're charging more than 16-cents for a burger, though.

    chips.jpg
     
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  2. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    I think the first fast food type hamburger place I ever saw and went to was The Big Boy in Pittsburgh....I'll have to doublecheck if that's the correct name....not sure.

    As I recall, they had some good burgers!
     
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  3. Ken Anderson

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    Bob's Big Boy?
     
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  4. Chrissy Cross

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  5. Ken Anderson

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    Yeah, that's the one. They used to be called Bob's Big Boy? I guess they fired Bob.

    progressionofbigboy.png
     
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  6. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    Yes, when you mentioned Bob's..it sounded familiar but the images don't show that...

    IMG_2696.PNG

    I used to go there in the 60's and I can actually remember the taste of their burgers. Nothing special about about them but something made them pretty darn good.

    At the same time, I remember White Castle also being popular...I didn't care too much for them...an acquired taste I guess.
     
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  7. Frank Sanoica

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    @Ken Anderson
    As a kid, a place called "White Castle" opened in our town, and my sister took me there early on. They offered (as by now most folks likely know), small burgers on square buns about 3-inches on a side, at the time for something like $0.11 each. Their advertising slogan said, "Buy 'em by the sack"!

    Today they are available in all the big stores in frozen form. Their buildings had a castle-like architecture with parapets and the like:

    This is exactly how ours looked
      • [​IMG]


    • Here's a magnificent one!
      • [​IMG]
    Exactly as I remember them:
    • [​IMG]
     
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  8. Bobby Cole

    Bobby Cole Veteran Member
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    Kinda. If my memory serves me correctly, Bob sold his interest in the burger chain and later opened a nice little restaurant called....Denny's.
    After Denny's got going, Bob Richardson also opened a buffet restaurant called Quincy's which was the forerunner of Ryan's and The Golden Coral.
    After all the hubbub and lawsuits from folks who charged his stores with racism, he shortly closed Quincy's and then bought the Carolina Panthers.

    Note: One Baptist choir said they were treated badly in one Denny's because of their race and Bob
    settled out of court for 18 million.
     
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  9. Ken Anderson

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    I lived close enough to Chicago that I went through there a few times, but have never stopped at White Castle, which was quite famous. I bought some White Castle burgers in a grocery store once, but they weren't anything special. Chip's burgers were small but not as small as the White Castle ones.
     
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