Dear AHT: In Search of Prexy's Original Recipe
Editor's note: Here's a reader question we recently received in the AHT inbox. Send your recs/questions to email@example.com.
When I was an undergraduate at Columbia in NY I was crazy about a hamburger made at the chain Prexy's .Their first store was near the college at 115 St. and Broadway and then moved on to other locations in the city. We are talking '50s and '60s. There are no Prexy's left now, but many of us on the internet have been looking for the original recipe, unfortunately without success. There was simply no hamburger as good. Would you have any input?
I'm afraid I had never heard of Prexy's before reading William's email, so for those of you who are as clueless as I am, here's some background info. As William mentioned in his email, Prexy's was a small burger chain in Manhattan that started near Columbia University and opened a few locations beyond—exactly how many locations, I'm not sure, but I counted at least seven from various address listings. The theme of the chain was college: it was named after the slang term for a college president, its slogan was, "The hamburger with a college education," and according to this Roadfood forum post, the restaurant featured "large framed black and white photos of ivy league college campuses with lights built into the frames." (According to this Chowhound post, the college-theme wasn't related to its proximity to Columbia.)
A few responses in the Roadfood and Chowhound forums are supposedly from relatives of the Prexy's founders, but they haven't shared (or maybe they just don't know) any information about the burger's recipe that no one can seem to figure out.
I couldn't find any photos besides the menu above, nor much description of the burger itself. (For a comparison some of us may be familiar with though, the author of this blog post says Shake Shack's burger reminded him of Prexy's.)
Can any AHT'ers help William with information about Prexy's recipe?