The company originated with a drive-in restaurant called "Parkette" in Charleston, West Virginia. Alex Shoenbaum opened the restaurant in 1947, then acquired a Big Boy franchise in 1951. Two years later, Shoenbaum renamed the Parkette "Shoney's Big Boy." During this time, Ray Danner was building a restaurant business in central Tennessee and opened his first Big Boy franchise in 1959 in Madison, Tennessee. He incorporated his privately owned company in 1968

Headquartered in Nashville, Tennessee, Shoney's, Inc., is one of the restaurant industry's most respected companies. As of 1998 the restaurant chain operated or franchised over 1,300 restaurants in 34 states, including Shoney's, Captain D's, and the Pargo's and Fifth Quarter specialty restaurants. The company owned 893 restaurants and franchised 494 others.




French Onion Soup

The Machine Shed Restaurant Recipe

6 onions, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup sugar
4 (14 oz.) cans beef broth
1 cup dry red wine

In a 4 quart Dutch oven cook the onions in hot butter over medium heat for 15 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in sugar the last 5 minutes of cooking.

Stir in the broth and wine. Heat through. Garnish individual serving with one slice of French bread, add Swish cheese, melt, and top with onion rings, if desired.  Makes 8 servings.

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