Yet another '50s kitsch restaurant called "XXX"

After hearing about KUOW's radio story on the "XXX" root beer diner in Washington State, Joe Berkemeier says,

I had no idea there was another Triple XXX in the U.S. The only one I ever knew of has been in the same location in West Lafayette, Indiana since 1929 and is a favorite of Purdue University students. One of the most popular items in the "Duane Purvis All-American" — a hamburger with peanut butter on the bun. Sounds gross, tastes great.


Reader comment: Wim Bonner says, "I read the history on the Triple X resturaunts some time in the past, and just wanted to point out that the two places you've mentioned today seem to be distantly related. Here's a quote:

Sometime between 1900 and 1908, the Galveston Brewing Company began to produce and sell a line of soft-drink syrups under the brand name "XXX." In 1918, with the advent of Prohibition, the company changed its name to Southern Beverage Company and converted its brewing equipment to producing only soft drinks, primarily ginger ale and root beer. By 1923, Southern Beverage Company's licensed distributors included about 150 Triple XXX bottlers and approximately 100 Triple XXX "thirst stations" throughout the Southeast, the Southwest, and the Northwest as far as British Columbia.

Reader comment: Monty Taylor says,

I read the bit on the XXX kitsch restaurant, and since I'm Seattle immediately decided I had to go for lunch. For what it's worth, they have a XXX burger that is easily as large a dinner plate. If you lift the bun (which isn't easy, it's pretty heavy) you see they've actually placed four patties inside. To add insult to injury, they will not serve you a fork and knife with the burger if you ask for one. And if you ask, they'll ridicule you. I'll be going back. Thanks for the heads up.

Reader comment: Tim McNeil says,

I liked your story about the Triple XXX restaurant in West Lafayette, Indiana. I grew up in that area and have been to that restaurant many times. I first remember going there with my father when I was maybe four years old. Later in school I became friends with Greg, the son of the man who owned the Triple XXX. Greg now runs the restaurant.

The term "Triple XXX" is a reference to that quaint and (as far as I know uniquely American) endeavor of trafficking in illegal alcoholic beverages which is known as Moonshining. The fable goes that the illiterate Moonshiners would mark their jugs of 'shine with three X's to denote the contents " "cause they hadn't learnt their letters".

Greg is one of the nicest people I have ever met. Of course, Greg's restaurant has nothing to do with p0rn or Moonshining. It just has an interesting name, frosty cold mugs of root beer and some really great burgers.

Reader comment: Regarding the XXX in Indiana, Chris says,

When we were back in college my friends and I used to drive 45 minutes each way to go to this place. They had great chili and floured hamburgers. For desert they had "The Obie" (named after a former Purdue football athlete) which has to be the pinnacle of deserts — a milkshake topped with a sundae. The best part of the Obie was the fact that they made the milkshake the same flavor as the sundae topping you picked. Those were some great nights.