Before Boise became a boomtown of new hotels, apartment buildings, subdivisions, retail outlets and other construction projects (in future years, historians may refer to this time as the Great Dust Rush), you couldn't go far without passing a great swath of verdant field where cattle lazily grazed. While there are far fewer farms and ranches in the capital city, agriculture—particularly the beef industry—is still huge in Idaho, with nearly 9,700 cattle ranchers operating in the state, more than 97 percent of which are family owned and operated.
Proximity might be a factor in good burger availability, but it's quality, innovation, affordability or all three that keeps us going back to local eateries like those joining us for our inaugural Boise Burger Week, Dec. 13-19. These participating restaurants will have a special burger or price on their menu during this time, and a portion of proceeds will benefit the Idaho Beef Council's Beef Counts Program, which helps get protein-rich beef donations to foodbanks in Idaho and Washington. So while you're out holiday shopping or otherwise reveling in yuletide cheer, drop into a Burger Week participating restaurant, order up a mouthwatering burger and tuck in. For a little light reading while you enjoy your delicious respite, check out the list of burger/beef facts below:
White Castle, founded in 1921, is the oldest hamburger chain in America. Its first burger sold for $.05.
Hamburgers account for almost half of all sandwiches sold, and 71 percent of all beef consumed in U.S. restaurants.
Americans consume more than 50 billion burgers every year.
Cheese became a popular addition to hamburgers during the 1920s.
American GI's during WWII tried to get hamburgers renamed "Liberty Sandwiches."
National Hamburger Day 2018 in the U.S. is May 28.
At $666, the Douche Burger from 666 Burger in New York was the most expensive hamburger in America. It was made with high-end items such as foie gras-stuffed Kobe beef, Gruyere cheese melted in Champagne steam, lobster, truffles and caviar; and it was served in a gold-leaf wrapper. 666 Burger has since closed.
McDonalds purchases more than 1 billion pounds of hamburger meat every year. McDonald's sells 75 burgers every second—or 270,000 burgers an hour.
The first reference to a "Hamburg steak" was in 1884. It was made of boiled chicken.
Americans eat 9 billion hamburgers at fast food restaurants each year.
In 2017, Rix "Terabite" Francisco, 24, won a Guinness World Record for eating five 107-gram hamburger patties in 1 minute. Mallie's Sports Grill and Bar in Southgate, Mich., set a world record for the largest hamburger in 2008, and again in 2017, when it cooked 1 ton of raw meat and topped it with 300 pounds of cheese, tomatoes, onions, pickles and lettuce. The bun alone weighed 250 pounds.
Fletcher Davis, a lunch counter operator in Athens, Texas, claimed to have invented the hamburger in the 1880s, when he started serving fried ground beef patties with mustard and onion between two slices of bread, with a pickle on the side.
According to ABC News, the most popular hamburger toppings are, in order: ketchup, onions, tomatoes, lettuce and mustard.
In 2003, PETA offered the city of Hamburg, New York, $15,000 to change its name to "Veggieburg."