You'll Never Guess The Story Behind Arby's Name

You pull up to your local Arby's drive-thru and order the usual. A classic Beef and Cheddar, a box or two of those strangely addictive curly fries, and a medium drink. You pay for the order, take the bag of meat and seasoned fries, and pull into the parking lot to eat. As you dig into the generous pile of roast beef dripping with melted cheddar, you glance up at the Arby's sign on the side of the restaurant. It never occurred to you that you have no idea just who "Arby's" is. You've certainly never heard of anyone named Arby, and while you know that Arby does have the meats, you're not quite exactly sure what the story behind that odd name in the cowboy hat-shaped sign is.

A lot of restaurants have some creative story behind their names. Burger King was once called "Insta-Burger King," named after the "Insta-Broiler" used in the first Burger Kings (via Reader's Digest). Shake Shack got the name from an amusement park ride in the movie "Grease" — to be more specific, the scene where Danny and Sandy sing "You're the One That I Want" (via The Motley Fool). Is the secret behind Arby's name as juicy as they boast their sandwiches to be?

The name Arby's comes from the Raffel Brothers

On July 23, 1964, the first Arby's was opened by brothers Forrest and Leroy Raffel in Boardman, Ohio. Forrest and Leroy were previously selling restaurant equipment, but inspired by the fast-food service boom, the brothers tried their own hand at opening a restaurant (via Fox News). Having decided to set themselves apart from other burger joints, Leroy and Forrest would sell roast beef sandwiches. They had previously considered calling their restaurant "Big Tex," but another businessman in Ohio had the name first. In a moment of ingenuity, the brothers decided to base the name on the initials "RB" — Raffel Brothers. Thus, from "RB's," you get the name "Arby's."

While naming a restaurant after your name isn't an uncommon practice, it would seem that people believed that the name came from a more obvious source. When one hears of Arby's and "RB's," it's not hard to believe the restaurant is named after the roast beef sandwiches they sell (via Business Insider). Arby's, however, has attempted to set the record straight about their origins, from posting it on Twitter to even having it on the company's website. 

Although the internet may believe one thing and Arby's another, there's no debate on how hungry you might be for some of those curly fries now, right?