The Magic Pan
The Quaker Oats Company acquired Magic Pan from the Fonos in 1970, and it became the company's primary restaurant chain. Quaker Oats sold the company to an Oakland, California-based company, Bay Bottlers, in 1982, at which time there were 110 Magic Pan locations throughout the United States and Canada.
In 2005, the Magic Pan name was re-introduced by Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises as a fast-food crepe stand in Northbrook, Illinois. This resurrected version of Magic Pan does not have the crepe-making machine used in the original chain. Instead, it uses recreations of the original recipes. The revived chain opened a second location in the food court of the Mall of America near Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Paradies company currently operates Magic Pan in U.S. airports including Denver and Washington National.
Among the menu items were chicken divan, crepe suzette, crêpes filled with spinach and mushroom soufflé, strawberries and sour cream, Chantilly cream, coffee chocolate sauce ice cream, and "cherry royale".
The restaurant designed an automated system to make crepes at a crepe station, consisting of a motorized conveyor that would heat metal pans. An attendant would dip the bottom of the pans in the crepe batter, to ensure an even coating. Lazlo Fono is generally recognized as the man who invented the crepe-making machine used in the chain's restaurants, starting in the mid-1960s.
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