Why Is Waffle House so Popular? — Cult Following


– [Narrator] People go to great lengths to eat at Waffle House. Loyal followers ride
motorcycles across the country. Choreograph dances or simply show up and order the same thing everyday for 50 years. Waffle House is so enduringly popular that the chain serves 341 strips of bacon, 238 orders of hash browns and 145 waffles every minute. And so many eggs that two percent of all
those produced in the U.S. for food service, end up on a Waffle House plate. But as anyone whose eaten at
Waffle House quickly discovers, it’s not actually the
waffles that draw people in. So what sets this southern
favorite apart from other chains like Denny’s and IHOP? – You’ve gotta do the
Waffle House when you come to the A town. It’s only right. – Happy Birthday from Waffle House. – Oh, thank you. See. – [Narrator] Waffle House
isn’t exactly pushing any culinary boundaries. But from the waffles to the hash browns all the food is cooked to order exactly how you want it. Over the years the chain has devised
some quirky was to make its food as consistent a possible. Its got its own secret language. – Smothered, covered, chopped, diced, peppered, cap, topped and country. – [Narrator] Which is code
for different toppings on hash browns like onions, ham, jalapenos and melted cheese. They also have a complex
system that servers and cooks use to mark plates. Servers place condiments
in specific positions on a plate to indicate to the cook how exactly the customer
wants their order. For example, jelly placed on the left
side of the plate signals that the eggs are to be cooked over easy. The sheer amount of love for Waffle House has turned it into an iconic
pop culture touch stone. – Hi, welcome to the Waffle House. May I take your order? – [Narrator] Today on Judge Faith. A trip to the Waffle House ends in a battle between best friends. – You don’t come here expecting The French Laundry. – This is better than
The French Laundry man. – Oops.
(laughing) – [Narrator] Waffle House
is frequented by celebrities from Kim Kardashian to Kobe Bryant. And FEMA even uses the restaurants to evaluate how hard
hit disaster areas are. – If you get there and the
Waffle House is closed? That’s really bad. – [Narrator] And the fact
that it literally never closes also means that late at night things can get a little out of control. (yelling and banging) – Whoa. – Maple syrup. No, no. Oh my god. – [Narrator] But that’s hardly
enough to keep people away. – This is the same type of
stuff I can make at home, only I don’t have to make it. And I don’t have to go
to the store to get it. – It’s like Denny’s. I’ve been raised, born and bred in Atlanta. So this is a part of our culture, if you will. You know what I mean? – I’ve been getting the same thing to eat for like 12 years. Like, they know my order like when I walk in. My coffee and my coke are ready to go, so. – [Narrator] For better or for worse you’ll always get exactly what you order at Waffle House. And for us in the south it’s a fixture. 24 hours a day.

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