When talking about fast food joints, the brain usually conjures images of deep fried golden fries along with huge burger patties, oozing with melting cheese. America’s influence on the food industry can be observed around the globe as local entrepreneurs have either taken a cue from the menu or the business model of the largest fast food restaurants in the world.
However, there are also restaurants that have gone away from the usual burger and fries combo and have established their own identity to dominate the local scene. In a world where everything is interconnected, it does not take long until a country’s hidden gem is featured out in the open.
1. Teremok – Edward Snowden must be having a grand time in Russia, only needing to go around the block to find one of the many easy to spot Teremok restaurants that have sprawled around Moscow and St. Petersburg. Although the place serves regular Russian fast food dishes like borscth and minced meats, what makes it special are its blinis. You would die for this Russian crepe served with your choice of sweet and savory fillings, topped with red caviar.
2. Chez Ashton – Canada is not particularly known for its fast food joints until Ashton Leblond opened Chez Ashton and introduced poutine. Critics say that the inside of the restaurant has a generic feel but do not let that stop you from enjoying a serving of poutine. The famous dish is a healthy serving of crispy, golden fries, smothered with gravy and cheese curds. The meal has become an icon where locals hang out after a late night drinking binge.
3. Girraffas – A recent World Cup debacle has made the people of Brazil extremely emotional. Lucky for them, they can eat their stress away at Giraffas, a casual steakhouse chain that serves burgers and grilled steaks. A serving of the flame-grilled top sirloin, or what locals know as picancha, with a side of rice and beans will make anyone forget their heartache and troubles.
4. Supermac’s – For a country renowned for its healthy appetite for drinking, a fast food chain like Supermac’s is perfect. The restaurant is famous for its Breakfast Roll. The Irish call it as heart attack on a platter because it is a dish made up of sausages, ham, and egg stuffed inside a baguette. It does not matter if you just about to clock in or you just came home from a drinking spree; you will have a mouthful in every bite.
5. Chocolateria San Churro – Not every fast food chain is dedicated to putting salt and grease inside your system. In Australia, you can get your sweet fix at Chocolateria San Churro. They serve fried churros that come with hot chocolates laden with organic spices. For those who have a serious sweet tooth, the place also offers truffles and pralines that are sure to satisfy your cravings.
6. Chefette – Sipping on a cocktail while enjoying the sun and the sea is an ideal way to spend your time in a tropical island. However, if you need to have a taste of comfort food, Cheffette is your best option in Barbados. It serves inexpensive Bajan dishes like roti wraps and fried chicken, but if you want something unique, try its famous chicken and potato curry rotti roll.
7. Maison Eric Kayser – When you think about fast food, France is probably the last country that will come up in your mind. Nonetheless, Eric Kayser is a master baker who specializes in creating handmade breads. The staffers in this establishment are trained for more than twelve months to learn Kayser’s technique. Although the place offers sweet pastries and savory snacks, you will not go wrong with the sought-after baguette sandwich with ham and emmental cheese.
8. Rossopomodoro – Aside from their Ferrari, Italians are proud of sharing pizza for the entire world to enjoy. So when talking about pizza places in Italy, Rossopomodoro deserves more than a second look. The restaurant serves the highest quality ingredients cooked by skillful chefs on roaring wood-fueled ovens.
9. Wienerwald – Any restaurant that started and prospered by only serving chicken noodle soup deserves a visit. Wienerwald did just that as it opened its doors in 1955 in Munich. Today, the place offers a wide variety of chicken dishes including grilled, barbecue, garlic chicken etc. Aside from their Chicken Box Special, feel free to add the Viennese apple strudel and Viennese Kaiserschmarrn to your order.
10. Goli Vada Pav – If you think visiting an exotic country like India will take you away from comfort food, think again. Although the joint doesn’t serve your usual chicken or burger dishes, it is known for its vada pav, a fried potato patty on a bun. The dish has been so good that the restaurant was able to establish 100 branches.
American influence on the food industry cannot be denied, but there are those who have walked away from the conventional fast food menu to make a name for themselves. These days, even a bread baker can dominate the scene as the most interesting fast food joints in the world no longer rely on the usual burger and fries combo.