French fries have always been the  standard side for burger in Denver and around the world.  Can you imagine ordering anything else?

Everybody knows that a burger’s best friend is a side of French fries, right?  The two just go together perfectly, like peanut butter and jelly.  You pretty much don’t even have to think about what to get with your burger in Denver, French fries are basically the default.  A burger and fries is a uniquely American combination and something that we all grew up eating.  Most of us probably don’t remember burgers ever coming with anything but fries.  But do you know how these two dishes became forever entwined?

Of course it depends on who you ask, but it is generally agreed upon that the first hamburger sandwich was served in this country in 1900.  The exact origin of French fries is similarly debated, but they became a very popular street food in Europe about the same time.  American soldiers learned of the crispy delight while stationed abroad during World War I and when they returned home, they still wanted fries.  White Castle, the first fast food hamburger chain, was started in 1916 and McDonald’s was born in 1948.  Both of these restaurants served fries as a side dish with their burgers and played an important role in their popularization.  But why did they serve them?  Potatoes were cheap and could endure long storage, making them a smart choice for restaurant owners.  Add to that the fact that it was difficult for people to fry potatoes at home, making French fries a treat to enjoy when going out to eat.  So it was a kind of perfect storm of demand, affordability and timing that brought these two great dishes together and the great partnership shows no signs of ever ending.

At Gunther Toody’s all of our burgers come with your choice of fries or coleslaw.  And just in case you’re looking for something a little bit different to go on the side of your burger in Denver, might we suggest the following:

  • Onion Rings
  • Sweet Potato Fries
  • Elvis Fries – smothered in sausage gravy and cheddar cheese
  • Cheese Fries
  • Green Chile Fries
  • Deep Fried Pickles


french fries photo

Photo by stevebott