It's not McD0nald's. But, if you're under 50, you may never have heard of Howard Johnson's.
Not the hotels...the restaurants. While they often resided within the "HoJo" Motor Lodges, there were over 400 Howard Johnson restaurants before the first motel was ever launched in the mid '50s. Over a thousand thrived throughout this land at the height of the empire.
For the vast majority of those that remember the iconic brand, it was the fried clams. For others, it was the 3-D burger and fries.
The last one is about to become history. The end of a dynasty that was the American chain restaurant movement in the days before Ray Kroc.
As Nicholas Varchaver said, there is a "poignant, gorgeous melancholy" to the story of the last HoJo's. A lone restaurant with two stars on Yelp and a manger who is steadfastly resistant to technological change.
It's another American icon, sadly lost.
I so loved those fried clams.