Tom Wahl's

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Tom Wahl's Inc.
Industry Restaurants
Founded 1955
Headquarters Webster, New York
Key people
Bruce Hegedorn, John Gonzalez, Keith Herman

Tom Wahl's is a chain of fast-food restaurants based in the Rochester, New York area that currently has several restaurants around the Finger Lakes region. USA Today named it one of "51 great burger joints across the USA" in 2010.[1]

Tom Wahl, Sr. opened the first restaurant in Avon, New York in March 1955[2] The restaurant specializes in "ground steak sandwiches" and its famous root beer and sells Abbott's Frozen Custard.

Original restaurant in Avon, New York


The restaurant chain was sold in 1986 to Bill Gray's, Inc.[3] During this time the chain opened a variant of its traditional diner-style restaurant called Wahl Street in the village of Pittsford. Featuring more of a serious feel in dining, this concept lasted a few years before closing down, returning the chain solely to the diner-style feel. In 2011, an equity group that includes Mark Wahlberg, Donnie Wahlberg, and chef Paul Wahlberg licensed the name "Wahlburger" from Tom Wahl's for use in their own restaurant.[4][5]

Tom Wahl's ground steak sandwich with hot sauce, onions, and tomatoes

There are currently a total of nine restaurants:

Tom Wahl's also sells its own brand of root beer and frozen custard at all of its restaurants.


  1. ^ "51 Great Burger Joints", USA Today (McLean, Virginia), 2010-10-01, ISSN 0734-7456, retrieved 2010-10-06 
  2. ^ "Our History". Webster, New York: Tom Wahl's Restaurants. Retrieved 2010-08-08. 
  3. ^ "Tom Wahl's named one of 51 best burger joints", Democrat and Chronicle (Rochester, New York), 2010-10-02, ISSN 1088-5153, retrieved 2010-10-06 
  4. ^ "Tom Wahl's signs licensing agreement with Wahlberg brothers", Democrat and Chronicle (Rochester, New York), 2011-08-25, ISSN 1088-5153, retrieved 2011-08-26, Tom Wahl's, which has federal trademark rights to the Wahlburger name, has signed a licensing agreement with the restaurant group that includes pop stars and actors Donnie and Mark Wahlberg and their chef-restaurateur brother, Paul. The agreement allows the Wahlbergs to name their soon-to-open burger eatery in Hingham, Mass., Wahlburgers Restaurant. 
  5. ^ "Step by Step: Chef, famous bros get fired up over Wahlburgers", Boston Herald (Boston, Massachusetts), 2011-08-24, ISSN 0738-5854, retrieved 2011-08-29, St. Croix said the restaurant’s ownership approached Tom Wahl’s, a chain of burger joints based in Rochester, N.Y., a few months ago after they discovered it sold a product called the “Wahlburger.” 

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