Surrey, BC: Today on the official start of the provincial election, De Dutch Pannekoek House Restaurants Inc. is delighted to announce that it is bringing back the popular Hamburger Polls established in 1963 by company founder John Dys. Starting on Wednesday, April 22nd, De Dutch customers can vote for their political flavour as they order their burger of choice: Campbell (Liberal) Burger, James (NDP) Burger, Sterk (Green) Burger or the Other Burger as relevant is select ridings. Each famous, original gourmet “Frying Dutchman” burger available in the Hamburger Poll is priced at $5.00 and available for eating in or taking out. While each candidate burger will feature the same ingredients including an all-beef patty (1/3 pound), Dill pickle slices, mayo and special De Dutch relish on a fresh sesame seeded bun, additional toppings are available to create the ultimate Frying Dutchman burger including melted Edam cheese, special DeBakon, sautéed onions and mushrooms, all-beef wiener, fried egg and more.
As was customary in the polls between the 1960s and 1980s, each De Dutch restaurant will feature signage in-store to track the current results for their location as well as all 18 locations combined in British Columbia. Results as of closing of the previous business day will also be posted on the restaurant website at www.dedutch com. The Hamburger Polls will officially start at opening on Wednesday, April 22nd and end at closing on election day, Tuesday, May 12th, encouraging British Columbians to cast their official vote at their designated polling station.
The first Hamburger Poll was conducted in 1963 by John Dys at his two Frying Dutchman Hamburger House locations in Vancouver and continued for almost 20 years at the Frying Dutchman, his concessions at the Pacific National Exhibition (PNE) and then later at the new De Dutch Pannekoek House Restaurants. Results were updated regularly and posted in the windows for all to see.
The polls gained such recognition and popularity since conducting a straw poll during an election campaign was illegal in British Columbia between 1939 and 1982. Under the guise of simply selling hamburgers by a given name, the Hamburger Polls continued to exist and gain increasing fame and a loyal following nation-wide.
The first poll during the provincial election in 1963 featured the following menu items for 49¢ each: Bennett Burger (“Give us credit for this one, my friends.”); Strachan Burger (“New. Your doctor recommends it.”); Fulton Burger (“A solid meal at a conservative price.”); and, Perrault Burger (“A liberal portion, done the way you like it.”).
The results of most of the earlier Hamburger Polls conducted during provincial, federal, municipal, party leadership and even bi-elections were usually within 10% of the actual election results.
One of the most memorable incidents during the historic Hamburger Polls occurred in 1972. The occasion was described in the Globe and Mail on Wednesday, May 22nd, 1979 as follows, “The aging W.A.C. Bennett had been premier then for 20 years, and was losing to the NDP. With the premier’s knowledge, aides set out to cook the illegal hamburger poll. They offered to buy the poll but Mr. Dys insisted that they actually take delivery of the food and refused to tell them how many orders it would take to alter their standings. Three days before the election, his cooks were called in at 5 am to start filling the Socred orders. During the day the Socreds used a truck to cart away more than 3,000 hamburgers which were given to welfare organizations and party workers – and the Socreds finally jumped ahead of the NDP in the poll. On election night, after this crushing defeat by the NDP, the premier, with tears in his eyes, murmured to an aide: “We won the poll but we lost the election.” ” Following that election, John Dys reported “no fiddling” with four burgers being the most ordered at one time.
Bill Waring, De Dutch President states, “We are elated to re-introduce the Hamburger Polls. Not only does it celebrate one of the original gourmet hamburgers and a BC tradition conceived by founders of De Dutch, it stresses the importance for everyone to participate in our country’s elections at all levels.” Today, John Dys is retired from the restaurant business but is thrilled to see the return of the original Hamburger Polls and buying his Frying Dutchman Burger of choice. He adds that he believes the Frying Dutchman burgers are still the best tasting burgers around but insists that he will ultimately “leave the taste of victory and defeat to the party leaders.”
The six original Frying Dutchman Hamburgers are still featured on the De Dutch menu today and are a popular choice among customers of all ages: Canadian, Gentle John, Humble Helen, Meek Myrtle, Plain Jane and Simple Simon.
The thirty-four year old De Dutch franchise with 19 locations in Calgary, Alberta and BC’s Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island, Fraser Valley, Okanagan, and Cariboo has successfully carved a niche in the competitive food service industry. While offering dinner at its Strawberry Hill location, De Dutch Pannekoek House specializes in breakfast, brunch and lunch, offering their customers a unique blend of European ethnicity in its menu items. The Pannekoek, a 12″ in diameter Dutch-style pancake, is their signature dish and continues to draw loyal customers.
For more information:
Nicole Poitras, Marketing Manager Sandra Merk, Media Relations
De Dutch Pannekoek House Restaurants Inc. Insight Productions
Phone: 604.543.3101, E-mail: email@example.com Phone: 604.535.9828, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org