It’s Halloween, All Hallows Eve, the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. That means children around the world will dress up as ghouls and goblins and their favorite cartoon characters before scouring their neighborhoods for more treats than tricks. Meanwhile, full-grown-adult restaurant industry workers will don costumes that will pay homage to the great dining institutions of film and television lore.
A number of particularly festive establishments have rebranded ahead of the holiday, giving diners more opportunities to celebrate.
In Chicago, local hot dog stand the Wieners Circle has transformed into McDowell’s, which should be well-known by fans of the Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall classic, Coming to America. The fictitious restaurant is awfully similar to another American fast-food institution, but, you know, at McDowell’s the buns have no seeds.
The folks at Fat Sal’s Deli, a mini-sandwich chain with locations in Southern California and Austin, also seem to be fans of Coming to America. Here’s the Westwood Village, Los Angeles, location all dressed up as McDowell’s.
And Halloween doesn’t only produce costumes taken from fake restaurants in movies. At Away, an upscale luggage outfit based in New York, some employees at the company’s headquarters showed their love for Shake Shack by dressing up as Danny Meyer’s wildly popular burger chain.
Speaking of burgers, Fox’s animated series Bob’s Burgers remains a popular costume. What’s Up? Hot Dog! in Vancouver nailed the look.
Detour Deli & Cafe in Wilmington, N.C., gets points for effort, but the signage font could be tweaked a bit for a more authentic look.
Alameda in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, went the Bob’s Burgers route as well. There’s no photographic evidence of elaborate decor, but kudos to the restaurant for special menu items and marketing language that would surely be met with approval by Bob himself.
Dario Argento is an Italian film maker know for his contribution to the Giallo subgenre, which combines elements of noir, slasher, psychological and erotic thrillers. The greatest example of this genre is Argento's 'Deep Red' which combines his masterful storytelling and dark vision with a truly unsettling score by Italian prog rock band Goblin. This is a burger with pimento cheese, its called 'the Dario Pimento burger'. #alamedaisbobsburgers
Finally, in Portland, Oregon, Le Pigeon isn’t transforming into a specific fake restaurant from the world of pop culture. Instead, each employee is taking costume inspiration from the same radical food-universe character. Le Pigeon is playing coy and declining to actually name names, only describing the costumes as everyone’s “favorite least favorite Food Network star.” The spiky hair, sunglasses, and bowling shirts should be dead giveaways.
That’s totally out of bounds. Happy Halloween.