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The All-You-Can-Eat Origins Of The Buffet
Before buffet-style restaurants became popular in America, Europeans were enjoying the decadent self-indulgence of this form of communal dining, except it was a bit more classy.
It was Sweden who first brought the concept of a communal buffet to the United States. For the meal that seemingly never ends, we have the Swedish smorgasbord to thank.
The smorgasbord first became an international hit at the Stockholm Olympic Games of 1912, where it was so popular it was brought to the 1939 New York’s World’s Fair.
On the menu were roast pork loin, broiled salmon, sirloin steak, poached chicken, fried scallops, roast lamb, sauces, sides, and some Swedish dishes, all for just a couple bucks.
A few years later, Herb McDonald started the Las Vegas Buckaroo Buffet, and the 24-hour “all-you-can-eat” venue became the catalyst that would make buffets what they are today.