Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

tooluther

Birthplace of the Big Mac

Recommended Posts

I was just watching the Food Network, and low and behold, the "Big Mac" was originated from a McDonalds owner in Pittsburgh. It was picked up nation wide the following year. Is this a well known fact that I some how missed? or is it just not something we normaly add to the list of Pittsburgh firsts?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


It had to be an owner who thought of it because no one else who actually works for them is allowed to think. It just doesn't instill me with pride to have anything to do with Mcdonalds. Maybe if it wasn't for Mcdonalds, what amounts to the big mac could become the next primanti's, actually adding to the local reputation for varied and unique cuisine instead of a few gems that are outnumbered by bad imitations of food from other cities. What we have is a corporation that's sucking our culture dry and a Pittsburgher who got sucked into making it more marketable.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

tooluther,

It's out there the Pgh City Paper did a piece on it one time "You Had to Ask" section, and the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh's website lists it among the "famous firsts". Nice post though.

What is amazing to me though is how many "Food Firsts" this region has had. Did you know that the Pittsburgh area had the world's first:

-Banana Split

-Ritz Cracker

-Klondike Bar

-"modern" Ketchup

-Pull tabs on soda and beer cans

-Twist off resealable Bottles

-Carbonated Soft Drink

-Kosher food product (from a plant)

-Kosher labeling on food (by companies)

-Kosher Tuna

-Grimes Apple grown

-Golden Delicious Apple grown (after all we were the original home of Johnny Appleseed)

-Kegger (some call it the whiskey rebellion ;) )

-Lite Beer

-American Lager

-North American Monastic Brewery

-Discovery of Vitamin C (Thanks to UPMC)

-And of course the Big Mac! (but in reality it was the first Super Sized Meal in the world!

One other great thing about the era of the "Big Mac" was that in the late 1960's Pittsburgh was on the fore front of the whole "biggest and fastest" trend of super stuff (the Super Bowl and Super Market were 60's creations after all).

Pittsburgh in the late 1960's not only invented the Big Mac but along with it served the very first Super Sized fastfood meal in the world!

Fast and Super also was in the way Pittsburgh dreamed about their cars, with a South Hills dealership rolling out with the King of all muscle cars (the fastest consumer car in the world for almost 15 years) the Yenko Super Car Camaro! (Featured in Too Fast Too Furious).

The Fast and Super 60's didn't end there for Pittsburgh, the city produced the world's first Basketball Champions when allowing the "dunk" and the 3 point shot . . . things that at the time were revolutionary in pro basketball and considered to be "super". The Pittsburgh Pipers were the ABA World Champions in the inagural 1968 season and pro basketball has never been the same (imagine Magic or Shaq or Jordan not having the 3 pointer or dunk!)

Pittsburgh also built the first "super" skyscraper, the world's tallest "uniform" structure was adding it's finishing touches in the late 1960's. The U.S. Steel Building at 600 Grant Street remains--even after close to 40 years--one of the top 5 tallest skyscrapers with uniform architecture (no 150 ft. or 300 ft. "spires", "structural antennas", or "decorative roofs" adding lots of largely uninhabitable waste space to boost height but rather one of the first (and the first that tall) uniform in sq. footage from the very top to the mezzanine).

The biggest event of the decade also had deep Pittsburgh roots, Rockwell International was the chief contractor in building the space program and was headquarted on Forbes Avenue in downtown, Westinghouse provided almost all the communications and 100% of the video feeds from the moon.

The 60's would have been way different if it wasn't for oversized fast meals with lots of beef, fast and furious muscle cars, Basketball played super for once in allowing the "streetball" dunks and 3 pointers, Super Skyscrapers that let you rent an office at the top just like u could at the bottom, and the race to the moon brought to you in technicolor by Pittsburgh Westinghouse!

Sorry but just got that memory lane feeling again. ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

:blush:

Well, I'm not as pretty as Rick Sebak :lol:

Seriously though thanks for the good words and thanks to Toolther for making note of it and sharing with all of us the Food Network broadcast.

For those outside the Pittsburgh area, Sebak is the local PBS Pittsburgh guru, his shows (documentaries?) are pretty legendary on discovering all the hidden history and heritage of the region.

It would be fun him and me on Jeopardy together when the topic "Pittsburgh" came up . . . the show may never end we'd both be there droning on for hours and hours relating how it all goes back to the Scotts and Forbes Road and Hannastown and then . . . lol.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

tooluther,

It's out there the Pgh City Paper did a piece on it one time "You Had to Ask" section, and the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh's website lists it among the "famous firsts". Nice post though.

What is amazing to me though is how many "Food Firsts" this region has had. Did you know that the Pittsburgh area had the world's first:

-Banana Split

-Ritz Cracker

-Klondike Bar

-"modern" Ketchup

-Pull tabs on soda and beer cans

-Twist off resealable Bottles

-Carbonated Soft Drink

-Kosher food product (from a plant)

-Kosher labeling on food (by companies)

-Kosher Tuna

-Grimes Apple grown

-Golden Delicious Apple grown (after all we were the original home of Johnny Appleseed)

-Kegger (some call it the whiskey rebellion ;) )

-Lite Beer

-American Lager

-North American Monastic Brewery

-Discovery of Vitamin C (Thanks to UPMC)

-And of course the Big Mac! (but in reality it was the first Super Sized Meal in the world!

Wow, some of those firsts I never would have guesses, especially the three Kosher ones and the carbonated soft drink.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The kosher ones are thanks to HJ Heinz Co. I believe it was the first generation son who in the 20's and 30's invited the Rabbi's from Sq. Hill and the Hill District to the Heinz Plant to test and bless (I'm christian so forgive me if I'm getting this wrong) the products. Seems that the first generation son (or it may have been the 2nd, Sen. Heinz's dad) was very connected with the local hebrew community, thus the focus on Kosher products from the 20's to the early 60's.

The Carbonated Soft Drink was over in Wheeling, WV in the 1830s or so (might be 20 years off on that), it was a few different firsts, soda fountain, soda drink, etc. etc. Some might say Wheeling is not Pittsburgh but I take the metroplex view of things ;) not only that but Wheeling's richest citizen is the owner of his "hometown" baseball team the Pittsburgh Pirates (Ogden Nutting) and Wheeling is solely dependent on WTAE TV Pittsburgh for its ABC programming (as well as Steubenville and E. Liverpool) etc. And we all know where Wheelingites go to take a flight to LA or Atlanta ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.