The Cozy Inn - Salina, Kansas
Cozy Inn in Salina, Kansas, sells hamburgers by the sack. The tiny burgers are prepared on the same 88 year old grill used since the restaurant opened in 1922. The tiny restaurant has only 6 seats along an old counter covered with news clippings about the Cozy Inn from over many years. The interior of the restaurant always smells like hamburger and onions, so if you don't care to smell the same, you should use the walkup window.
The Cozy Inn serves all of their burgers with onions and they do not offer cheese. Tradition is that an employee was once fired for adding cheese. The burgers are 85 cents each, with doubles a $1.40. The only items sold in the Cozy Inn are 90% lean hamburgers, potato ships, soda, coffee hot chocolate and Cozy Inn souvenirs. Purchased by the sack, the burgers are sometimes unwrapped, just stacked in the Cozy Inn brown paper sack.
The original owners once tried replacing the tiny, 18 by 36 inch cast iron grill with a new grill. But the regulars complained that the hamburgers just didn't taste the same, and they had to bring the old one back.
The Cozy Inn changed hands a few years ago. The new owner kept things much the same, except the hamburgers are now a little bigger: 16 to the pound, down from 25.
But ultimately, I think that the attraction of the Cozy Inn is more about the history and atmosphere, than about the food.
Open 10-9 Monday-Saturday, 11-8 on Sunday. The Cozy Inn also ships frozen burgers.
copyright 2002-2011 by Keith Stokes