Frisch's Big Boy is a regional restaurant chain from the Big Boy franchise. Today there are over ninety restaurants in Indiana, Kentucky, and Ohio. Frisch's also owns numerous Golden Corral restaurants in Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. Frisch's is one of the longest surviving Big Boy franchises.


In 1905, Samuel Frisch opened the Frisch Cafe in Cincinnati, Ohio. He continued to operate the cafe until his death in 1923. Three of Samuel's sons, David, Reuben and Irving, continued operating their father's cafe after his death. It was not until 1939 that expansion occurred with the opening of the Mainliner on Wooster Pike in Fairfax. Cincinnati's first year-round drive-in, it was named after a passenger airplane flying overhead into nearby Lunken Airport.

Becoming a Big Boy franchise

In 1932, Dave Frisch visited one of Bob Wian's Big Boy restaurants in California. Dave was impressed with the double-decker sandwich, although he decided to change the primary condiment from Thousand Island dressing to a homemade tartar sauce. This made Frisch's stand out from the rest of the Big Boy restaurants. Frisch's tartar sauce became the signature sauce in other meals, as well. In 1948, the first Frisch's Big Boy restaurant, "Big Boy One," opened on Central Parkway in downtown Cincinnati. Although the look has changed, Frisch's still operates in that location today.


In 1949, Frisch's opened its first restaurant in Kentucky, and, over the next decade, it expanded throughout southern Ohio and into Indiana. Early restaurants built during this time offered carhop services. With many opportunities, franchisees opened restaurants throughout the tri-state area, which helped Frisch's grow and expand (eventually reaching as far north as Columbus and Toledo, as far east as Athens and Lancaster, Ohio and as far south as Florida). Frisch's released its famous tartar sauce to local grocery stores in 1960. However, times were changing. Frisch's faced competition from numerous restaurants, both national and local. McDonald's introduced the Filet-O-Fish in 1963 in an aggressive campaign against Frisch's. Some Frisch's restaurants did close in the 1970s and 1980s, but the company persevered in the remaining market and avoided extinction.


In 1982, Frisch's began to reinvent itself by adding drive-thru service at many restaurants. It introduced the soup and salad bar, which had begun to be implemented by many fast-food eateries. With these introductions, Frisch's had to remodel older restaurants or tear them down and rebuild from the ground up to stay competitive. As a result, carhops were no longer a fixture at Frisch's, but were retained at a few Cincinnati locations to cater to diners seeking the nostalgic dining experience. Frisch's also introduced the Hot Fudge cake, which quickly became one of Frisch's best-selling items. While other Big Boy franchises died off, became separate eateries, or filed for bankruptcy, Frisch's Big Boy developed new concepts, including the introduction of a retro theme in newer restaurants. However, Frisch's closed their locations in Florida by the 1990s.

In 2000, Frisch's had the opportunity to purchase the national Big Boy chain, which was in bankruptcy, but declined the offer. As of June 2003, Frisch's operates eighty-eight Big Boy restaurants and franchises another thirty-two to other Big Boy operations. Restaurants in the Toledo, Ohio, area are owned and operated by Bennett Enterprises under the Frisch's name.

Frisch's Big Boy Hamburger

It is constructed as follows, from top to bottom:

*Toasted plain top bun
*1/8 lb beef patty
*Shredded lettuce
*Frisch's Tartar Sauce
*Toasted plain center bun
*Slice of American cheese
*1/8 lb beef patty
*Toasted plain bottom bun

Commercials and slogans

Radio and TV commercials for Frisch's (which operates Big Boy in the Cincinnati, Ohio, area) are considered by many locals to be a source of humor, even though many of these advertisements were intended to be serious. A notable example is an advertising jingle from the "Gotta be Frisch's Big Boy" campaign of the early 1980s.

The Frisch's slogan being used in commercials today is "What's your favorite thing?"


External links

* [ Frisch's Website]

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  • Frisch — Frisch, Karl von Frisch, Max Frisch, Otto R. Frisch, Ragnar * * * (as used in expressions) Frisch, Karl von Frisch, Max (Rudolf) Frisch, Ragnar (Anton Kittil) …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • FRISCH (R.) — FRISCH RAGNAR (1895 1973) Titulaire du prix Nobel pour son rôle de pionnier en matière d’économétrie, Ragnar Frisch, né à Oslo, était le fils d’un célèbre orfèvre, Anton Frisch, et commença à s’initier à cette profession, selon une tradition… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • frisch — Adj. (Grundstufe) nicht konserviert, nicht alt Beispiel: Er isst gerne frische Gurken. Kollokation: frisches Brot frisch Adj. (Aufbaustufe) voller Energie, gesund aussehend Synonyme: erholt, fit, kräftig, leistungsfähig, munter Beispiele: Nach… …   Extremes Deutsch

  • -frisch — [frɪʃ] <adjektivisches Suffixoid> (vor allem in der Werbesprache): a) von dem im Basiswort (meist Ort) Genannten kommend und daher (in Bezug auf Nahrungs , Genussmittel) qualitativ recht gut: gartenfrisch (Gemüse); kutterfrisch (Krabben);… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • frisch — Adj std. (11. Jh.), mhd. vrisch, ahd. frisc, mndd. versch, vers, varsch, mndl. versch Stammwort. Aus wg. * friska Adj. frisch , auch in ae. fersc, afr. fersk. Außergermanisch keine sichere Entsprechung. Offenbar auf (ig.) * prēska gehen zurück… …   Etymologisches Wörterbuch der deutschen sprache

  • frisch — frisch: Das westgerm. Adjektiv mhd. vrisch, ahd. frisc, niederl. vers, engl. fresh ist dunklen Ursprungs. Es wurde früh in die roman. Sprachen entlehnt, vgl. frz. frais und it. fresco »frisch« (↑ Fresko). – Abl.: frischen (mhd. vrischen, jetzt… …   Das Herkunftswörterbuch

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