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Prexy's burgers

  • m

If anyone remebers this chain of great tasting burgers.......last seen around the late 70's.

What ingrdient did they contain that gave them that unusual, great taste. it could not have been just the meat.

Anyone know...please help....or do you know what happened to defunct the chain.

Marco

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  1. I miss them, too. After I moved to NYC in 1966, one of my first jobs was in the reservations office at the Plaza Hotel. Prexy's was right next door on Central Park South and that's where I ate my lunch every single day - a Prexy Burger with fries and a side of cole slaw. I've never had a better hamburger or better slaw. I didn't understand their slogan though: "Prexy Burger - The hamburger with a College Education." What the heck did that signify?

    18 Replies
    1. re: Deenso

      There used to be one on the East Side - I think on Lex in the low 70s. I ate lunch there many times in 69/70 when I was a senior at Hunter HS...in fact there's a candid in our yearbook of me chowing down on one of their burgers!

      They were terrific! And I have no idea what the slogan meant...

      Chris

      1. re: chrisonli

        They definitely had their first store on Broadway and about 115th Street and the slogan was due to to their being there. I remember them when I started Columbia in 1963.

        Perhaps Columbia has a neighborhood historian or some such who could tell us more.

        1. re: Bill

          I still want to know what was the special ingredient.

          Boy, would I love to recapture that great taste.

          Marco

        2. re: chrisonli

          Three on Lex- 41st, 61st, and 72nd, and later 86th off Lex

        3. re: Deenso

          The slogan must have come from their flagship store which was located on 116th st and Bway....COLUMBIA U.....therefore the college education.

          Last location I ate them was 86th and Lex.....in the late 70 's

          But what was the ingredient that made them so special?,,,,puzzling.

          They were truly the BEST EVER.

          Somebody help....or better yet, bring them back.

          I'd come in all the way from PA where I live now....just for one.

          marco

          1. re: Deenso

            I don't know how commonly it's used, but 'prexy' is slang for the president or top administrative officer of a college or university. That still doesn't make it a good slogan, so I hope there's a better explanation (maybe the Columbia U. one).

            1. re: SuzyInChains

              My father started the bus. in 1942, he spent the better part of a year in a laboratory in Chicago testing different ingredients. A friend of his said "by the time your done with this hamburger its going to have a college education". With that he named it Prexy's(pres. of a college) and the slogan became "the hamburger with a college education."
              It had nothing to do with the Columbia store location, but that was a good guess....

              1. re: Randy E.

                Do you know what was the ingredient that gave the Burger such an unusual and wonderful taste.....This will bother me forever.....It was the best and I can't can't get it out my head....please help if you know....marco714

                1. re: Randy E.

                  Hi Randy ... my name is Joan Salm. My husband, Guenther, and I, used to go soaring with your dad at Wurtsboro. We just came across some early movies we took of you and your dad and us at Wurtsboro. We once went up in a sailplane and left our daughter, then less than a year old, in our car with you and your dad looking after her while we took a spin in a Schweitzer 2-33? That would be frowned on today, indeed. Anyway, Prexy's (at 86th and Lex) was a wonderful institution. Sorry it and it's secret recipe doesn't exist today. Do you know the secret?

              2. re: Deenso

                YEA-I ATE AT THAT SAME PREXY'S ON 59 ST. MANY TIMES. THE THING I REMEMBER BEST WAS THEIR STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE WITH THE SOFT ICE CREAM. TO ANSWER YOUR QUESTION ABOUT THE SLOGAN "HAMBURGER WITH A COLLEGE EDUCATION" ALL PREXY FRANCHISE OWNERS WERE REQUIRED TO ATTEND HAMBURGER COLLEGE WHERE THEY RECEIVED A DIPLOMA THAT WAS PROUDLY DISPLAYED AT EACH STORE. HENCE THE HAMBURGER WITH THE COLLEGE EDUCATION. IT WAS A GREAT PLACE TO ENJOY A BURGER OR STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE.

                1. re: HUEY

                  I'm happy to hear that the great name
                  Prexy's is still alive and well. That happened to
                  be my fathers business. I hope you enjoyed them...they, truly, were the best.

                  Sincerely, Bill E.

                  1. re: w.e.

                    Do you know what was the ingredient that gave the Burger such an unusual and wonderful taste.....This will bother me forever.....It was the best and I can't can't get it out my head....please help if you know....marco714

                  2. re: HUEY

                    I ate at Prexy's near Columbia University when I was going to Barnard college. To this day, I think thier hamburgers wre the best I have ever tasted and wonder how they made them. any ideas?

                  3. re: Deenso

                    E-mail me sometime. I'll tell you the real
                    meaning of the slogan. That was my dad's...

                    Sincerely,
                    Bill E

                    1. re: w.e.

                      Do you know what was the ingredient that gave the Burger such an unusual and wonderful taste.....This will bother me forever.....It was the best and I can't can't get it out my head....please help if you know....marco714....please reply

                      1. re: w.e.

                        I think it was your father who my father and his partners purchased the chain from in the mid sixties- I met your dad-

                      2. re: Deenso

                        That was indeed a great burger. Can anyone furnish me the logo ??

                        1. re: Deenso

                          There was one about a block from Columbia University. It may have been the first one. Loved it

                        2. s
                          sing me a bar

                          OMIGOD! You're killin' me with nostalgia. There used to be a Prexy's where 6th Ave crosses 8th St on the West side of the avenue. I was a kid..there was a Prexy's next to what now is, I believe, Go Sushi. I often stare out the window of Go remembering Prexy's, the burger with a college education. The sign had a burger with a graduation hat on! They had those old ketchup containers shaped like a large tomato. Chock Full O' Nuts was also nearby serving amazing cream cheese on datebread and EPIC chocolate milk. Prexy's was the best! The original Balducci's was next door.They were family friends..it was another world...There was a Howard Johnson's around the corner doling out huge cones shaped like a dunce cap.

                          1. I grew up on Prexy burgers, as I lived on Central Park South in the 60's. Simply the best burger that I ever tasted. Would love to know what the secret ingredent was and if there are any remaining stores in the US. Thanks to all for bringing back a lovely memory. ct@terrisgolf.com

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: terrisgolf

                              I wrote the following to the guys who said it was their father's business

                              ".......Do you know what was the ingredient that gave the Burger such an unusual and wonderful taste.....This will bother me forever.....It was the best and I can't can't get it out my head....please help if you know"....marco714

                              I can't ever stop searching for that taste....It's gone but never forgotten....if you ever get the answer, please email me.....I'd buy a thousand of them now...or make a thousand if I knew the ingredient......Marco714

                            2. The original comment has been removed
                              1. Arggggg!!! The son of the owner's responds....the father is in the lab in Chicago testing....testing what??? Obviously secret ingredients!!! It could not be the beef. You wouldn't do that in a lab, you'd do that in a kitchen. Finally: EUREKA!!! The perfect taste is achieved. "They said I was mad.... they said I was C-R-AaaaZY!! I'll show them, I'll show them all!" But do we get word of this secret ingredient? Nope. I too mourn Prexy's, where my dad would take me. 6th Ave. And Chock Full O' Nuts. And the big HoJo's on 6th Ave and Greenwich. When it became some sort of music place my sense of loss was total. Well, maybe the ticket is to hunt up former Prexy's employees. Before they all die!

                                6 Replies
                                1. re: SkipChurch

                                  I didn't read the part about the Lab so literally, it seemed more like an expression.

                                  Knowing the era, I would take a wild guess it was a common boxed ingredient used to jazz up some cooking, and start there. Maybe you'll find your own genius combo.

                                  1. re: sugartoof

                                    ....You mean something like Adolph's meat tenderizer or Lawry's salt......?

                                    Regardless.....I've been searching for the best burger for all these...to no avail.....prexy's is one my strongest childhood memories...along with Cake Masters Seven Layer cake slices

                                    1. re: marco714

                                      Those weren't my guesses, but....maybe?

                                      I was taking a wild guess along the lines of something a college student might reach for that lends itself towards burgers. Have you tried Liptons onion soup mix in a burger?

                                      1. re: sugartoof

                                        Oh I'm convinced that the secret ingredient was something worth keeping secret. In the movie version, competing groups seek a lead on the ingredient. The good guys (us) discover that an 86 year old Prexy's fry chef is living in Rye NY in an abandoned amusement park. But the bad guys (evil McGigantic Burgers Corp, and also PETA fanatics) are out to stop us from getting the secret at all costs! Fueled by replica dishes of tiny and overpriced vanilla ice cream from Rumplemeyer's, we battle for truth, justice, and the American burger!

                                        1. re: sugartoof

                                          I have used Lipton's many times....it surely wasn't that.......The burger was a plain patty.......no visible additions or filling....just a great, unusual and never duplicated taste.

                                          1. re: marco714

                                            I remember Prexy's from my childhood. I thought the sign was so funny. Could there have been one in the east 30s? Near the Chock full o' Nuts on Madison? Or am I conflating?

                                            In any case, Arthur (Food Maven) Schwartz might have a lead on the solution. He wrote a wonderful book on New York food.