Ribeyes and t-bones and skirt steaks, oh my! This isn't some kooky version of The Wizard of Oz we're talking about here. We're talking about the Shangri-La for all carnivorous appetites: Longhorn Steakhouse. It's one of the most popular restaurant chains in the world to order up a savory filet mignon and wash it down with a cold brew, but few Longhorn fanatics know the strange history behind their favorite spot to cop hearty grub.
A Carnivore's Delight
If you love eating meat, there are few more appropriate places to go than a steakhouse. And, LongHorn Steakhouse carved itself out as one of the leading chains in the world. But, how exactly did it enter the hearts of steak lovers worldwide?
An 'Urban Cowboy' Vibe
The man behind the concept of LongHorn Steakhouse was George McKerrow, who opened the very first one in Atlanta in the early '80s. At the time, the movie Urban Cowboy was creating buzz around Texas-style steak eatieries.
Keeping It Simple
McKerrow's mentality was to keep the concept simple. His primary goal was to "capitalize on the evolving style of people's dining preferences." That style, at the time, was heavy into rich cuts of steak. But, as with any big ideas, problems arose.
The First Roadblock Strikes
The very first one occurred immediately, and it almost brought the entire idea crumbling into oblivion. The business partner whom McKerrow was relying on for most of the funding just... vanished. McKerrow was thrown into panic mode.