In downtown Atlanta encompassing two city blocks is a drive-in restaurant that can hold over six hundred diners. This behemoth opened it’s doors in 1928 by Frank Gordy and has been a hit ever since. Currently there is five restaurants, two airport locations and a catering division. The name of the place is “The Varsity”.
“The Varsity” is an iconic fast-food restaurant in Atlanta which has had the pleasure to serve presidents like George Bush and Bill Clinton. Athletes like Evander Holyfield would stop by regularly to get his chili dog fix. A wide variety of actors ranging from Clark Gable to Kevin James have passed through the doors. Due to the design and the 1970’s look, this was a great backdrop for scenes from the movie “We are Marshall” starring Matthew McConaughey.
The menu of this fast-food restaurant is simple. Specializing in their famous hot dogs which put them on the map, hamburgers and a couple of sandwiches. They are also know for their orange soda, orange shake, fried apple and peach pies. The hot dogs are 100% beef which is sourced locally served on a steamed bun. They pride themselves on making their onion rings and French fries from scratch and fresh daily.
It was time to “Feed The Beast” and we didn’t want to waste any time. We arrived when they opened at 11:00 am and by the time we left, there was not a seat to be had. We ordered a couple of the hot dog combos and sodas. Of course one soda was their “Varsity Orange”. Going in, it would benefit you to know their lingo to expedite ordering. For instance a “Hot Dog” is a hot dog with chili and mustard. The “Heavy Weight” is a hot dog with extra chili. And a “Naked Dog” is a plain hot dog. The list goes on, however if you don’t have time to educate yourself just do what we did and point to the menu behind the counter.
If you find your way to Atlanta, check out “The Varsity” and experience this piece of fast-food history even if it is to grab one hot dog . To truly appreciate it, I would recommend going to the original location located at 61 North Avenue, Atlanta. Lastly, if you are only going to get one chance in your lifetime to go here, eat and drink what they are known for. Don’t deviate from what made a place like this famous for over 90 years.