Wally’s Burger – End of an Era

At yesterday’s Dot Com Pho, Michael Kwan showed me a Vancouver Sun article that said Wally’s Burger was closing its doors for good. I couldn’t believe it. I’ve been going to Wally’s for as long as I can remember. Wally’s dates back nearly 50 years and used to be the spot to hang out at during the 60’s and 70’s, when Kingsway was the hot cruising road for street rods and customs. Wally’s has the last remaining neon sign on Kingsway. The place is practically a Vancouver institution so I’m really sad to see it go.

With the thought of no more Wally’s, I decided I better head down there to get my burger fix before they close for good. Unfortunately, I was not the only one who had that idea. The place was packed! It was so busy, I had to line up 15 minutes just to place my order. I was lucky I even got my order in because right after my order, they closed the order window because they ran out of burgers and told everyone that was still in line to come back at 4PM!

While waiting for Wally’s to make my burger, CBC News showed up to do some filming for their evening news broadcast. They interviewed a bunch of people including me. I even flip the top off my burger to show them what goes into a Wally’s burger. I think next week’s Dot Com Pho is going to be Dot Com Wally’s.

wally1.jpg


81 thoughts on “Wally’s Burger – End of an Era”

  1. yissels.com says:

    Well… you did get a few seconds of fame 😛

    1. Too bad it wasn’t CTV News who did this story… CBC is brutal!

      1. DeboHobo says:

        John Chow you seem to be every where! the burger looked really great.

  2. Hardeep says:

    I’m sure CBC didnt know they had a blogging superstar on when they filmed you.. but then again CBC is about losing money.. they don’t read stuff about making money online.

  3. Melvin says:

    WOw, why are they closing? No Idea

    1. Shaun Carter says:

      In the video the owner said it was because his landlord didn’t want to renew his lease. It’s too bad because the guy just bought it five years ago.

  4. I wonder if they’ll think about changing their mind with all the exposure?

    Talking of which, I was suprised to to see that you weren’t wearing anything branded with johnchow.com?

  5. Quit Smoking says:

    That’s a huge surprise. Long live Walley’s 😆

  6. How to Blog says:

    I’ve never even heard of Walleys. Its always disappointing when a favourite decides to close.

  7. Harishankar says:

    May be they got big competitors…?

  8. hyms says:

    JohnChow’s ideas is very great that’s why many people like to subscibe to the blog. So do I.

  9. Mike says:

    That sucks. Happened a few years ago, in my town, to this awesome dive… now its a funeral home hmmm…

    1. The world is Keep Changing rearranging minds and thoughts, The fly of doom the baby boom.

  10. Sam says:

    Why isn’t there a push to make it historical to keep it there?

  11. I guess to everything comes an end, how sad it is! The same goes for our online projects. How profitable it can be, there will be a day…

    1. Krsto says:

      Great speach!

  12. Simon Lau says:

    Did the folks at CBC know who you were John? Sad to see another piece of history disappear.

    1. Syed Balkhi says:

      yeah nothing you can do about that as these new corporations are monopolizing such as Burger King and McDonalds it is really hard to keep the old stores up.

      1. RacerX says:

        This isn’t a McDonald or BK thing, it is a Real Estate issue. The Real Estate is just too valuable for what it is being used for.

        Same thing happened to CBGBs in NYC
        As well as Indian Hills Theater in Omaha (where i grew up!)

        It is really hard to get anything on the National Register to protect in the States, don’t know about Canada.

        1. Seopher says:

          Right on the money; it’s prime real estate and to be in a spot like that you need to be making good money. It’s hard for eateries to make loads with $4 burgers.

    2. MoneyNing says:

      Probably not 👿

  13. Kiley says:

    Buy it, John! 😈

  14. Trevor says:

    I thought they were already closed 🙄

    John Chow, you are so lucky. More exposure

    1. No doubt He is a lucky Chap

  15. Krsto says:

    This happens in my country all the time. Traditional values are no longer respected…

  16. Syed Balkhi says:

    John did the reporter know who you were ?? Maybe he would’ve felt lucky to be interviewing you 😉

    1. I think he was not, if he knows whom he is interviewing he might change his subject from “Why Wally’s is closing to How John is making money”

    2. LoL yeah indeed it looks like the reporter had no clue who was interviewing…

  17. Only 13 comments?? Well this is my first comment here but I read JohnChow for many months…I just wanna say Hi! I’m from Spain and havent ever been in Wally’s …

    1. Mayank Rocks says:

      And now it is 57 lol

  18. Joy Smith says:

    That’s a shame that the city does not want Wally’s there, it seems. Here we lost our drugstore/soda shop thanks our town’s greed. The place had been open for about as long as Wally’s had. Such a shame that it all comes down to greed.

  19. It really stinks seeing things like this disappear.

  20. Joe Tan says:

    First time seeing John in YouTube on CBC News talking about burger, other than ‘Making Money Online’ 😆

  21. Robert says:

    There is nothing like a good burger joint. Never been to Wally’s, but I heard it’s good. Sorry to see it go.

  22. Keith Cash says:

    Hate to here that 🙁

    Maybe the surge of support, they will change their mind 🙂

    All the old burger joints I went to as a child are now closed.

  23. Too bad… never been in that place anyway. 🙂

  24. Zac Johnson says:

    haha, so ridiculous… even when it isn’t about your blog, you still get on tv! 😈

  25. James Wilcox says:

    John, looks like a good burger but you must work out all the time…how do you stay so thin when you eat lunch out all the time? 😯

  26. Justin Rumpf says:

    What does it cost to keep a place like this open? $50,000? With all the money you make online maybe it is time to invest in something like a burger place. If you were truly sad you would perform a John Chow buy out. Seriously, it is probably pocket change for a guy like you. Why dont you diverisfy and keep wally burger open?

    1. John Chow says:

      Buying the business is not the problem – it’s for sale for $22,000. However, where are you going to put it? The landlord is refusing to renew the lease because he can sell the land to a developer and turn it into a multi-million dollar condo project.

      1. MoneyNing says:

        I’m no lawyer, but couldn’t you just use the exact same layout, imaging etc once the business is closed?

        I guess what I’m saying is, “what’s the point of buying something if it’s going to close down since they won’t be suing you for IP reasons?”

      2. Justin Rumpf says:

        Think about it, you could post pictures of cheeseburgers all day for the tax write-off. Maybe you could take a picture of the whole place and then write off the purchase price ($22,000) as a business expense.

        Hmmm, cheese….

        1. MoneyNing says:

          John can post pictures of cheeseburgers all day for tax write-offs without paying $22k for it. Write offs help him pay less tax, doesn’t mean he can gain money out of it. It’s like buying things on sale because you are still paying 80% of original price for it when it’s 20% off.

          1. Justin Rumpf says:

            You must be John’s money man. I’ll stop commenting because you obviously know more than me.
            😈 😈 😈 😈

  27. Maybe they will put an In-n-Out Burger joint there…which would make up for Wally’s closing in spades.

  28. Ruthie says:

    You looked great, John! Always a pleasure seeing your handsome face! HeHe! Actually, reminds me of a neat burger joint in my old college town in Starkville, MS called Christie’s. Pretty darn yummy!!

  29. Never heard about Wally’s coz nothing like than in New Delhi India.

    Here we have McDonalds and Nirulas (Indian Brand but Awesome) and not to forget KFC.

    If Nirulas closes i would seriously die!!! 😕 😥

  30. MoneyNing says:

    Another chance to go into main stream media 🙂 Good job John!

  31. Mike Huang says:

    Seems like you got a lot of FACE TIME 🙂

    -Mike

  32. natespost says:

    It’s sad, but the “little guy” CAN compete with the big franchises and corps. This apparently stems from a problem with the lease. If the business has been ther for 50 yrs, why do they not own the property? Was the new “owner” leasing the property from the former owner?

  33. Terry Tay says:

    You need to be wearing your JohnChow.com T-Shirt for those types of things John 😆

    Times are changing and small businesses are being replaced by big box stores and big restaurants. You would think if something is popular it would be able to remain a part of the community. I’ve never been to Wally’s so I don’t know how good the burgers are, but I’ll take John’s word for it that they are.
    ~Terry

  34. Aw that sucks! Nice tv shots, lookin’ good.

  35. The Dot Com Mogul is even more famous!

  36. John,
    It sucks..looks like good food. Made me want to get a burger all of the sudden.

  37. natespost says:

    I’ll take a greasy, sloppy locally owned burger over any franchise burger any day.

  38. Jake Cohen says:

    That’s sad, really sad… I had no idea. I visited there two years ago when I went on vacation in Vancouver. A place that’s been around since the 60’s, closing down! Unbelievable, unbelievable! Big industries just ruin everything.

    http://www.TalkPrice.net

  39. Tech Blog says:

    Chow and food never far apart 😀

    1. Mayank Rocks says:

      I tend to agree with you haha. He eats too much it seems 😛

  40. natespost says:

    Now I’m hungry!

  41. Saam says:

    Bummer, those onion rings sure did look good. At least you got to be on TV, no fair!

  42. We have a Tasty Freeze in Melbourne FL that’s been here since 1952, I think it’s one of the original stores. The place is a dump, but everyone still goes there and you have to wait 10 to 15 minutes to get ice cream on a Fri or Sat night. I can’t imagine it will last much longer. The pace of progress is gobbling up these nostalgic little diners and ice cream shops and that’s a bummer.

    1. Kiley says:

      Well, hello neighbor!
      N. Melbourne resident here.

  43. Seopher says:

    I reckon you should try and buy the premises and run a burger bar called “John Cow” (with the guy who runs JohnCow.com)

  44. Robert says:

    That is an EXCELLENT idea. John, you could hire a good manager to run it and make passive income off of it. Then you can frequent it like you used to and continue eating those burgers. That will also give me time to head out there and try the place out.

  45. Krsto says:

    Why all the excellent ideas go to John??

  46. Jason says:

    Should have shouted “John Chow Dot Com” on the way out the door. 😎

  47. How to Blog says:

    The John Chow/Cow Diner?
    Thats gone a ring to it!

  48. Robert says:

    How about Chow Burgers?

  49. Huge companies will strike down all that is good!

  50. Steven says:

    Hey John,

    When I read Wally’s Burgers was closing I was both shocked and disappointed, but not really surprised. Every time I drive by the sign it makes me smile. Now what am I supposed to smile at on Kingsway? 🙁

  51. haha, just saw the clip now. Nice work in front of the camera John.
    So are we going there on Saturday? I have not tried a burger there before! 😀

  52. Tony says:

    10 blocks away from where I live but never went there before. I don’t remember there is any competition over there. Few Chinese restaurants and Churches chicken, and MacDonald is over at Victoria.

  53. Never been to Wally’s but I just finished watching the bionic burger on Youtube. Would Wally’s burgers react the same way?

  54. Yoon Ho Um says:

    Hi John & Peeps,

    I can’t believe this…!

    My friend drove past it on Monday and I was thinking on how I had never gone inside, never even tried one of their world famous burgers and wondering what I would do if someone decided they wanted to really go to Wally’s Burger… could I resist?

    It was like ‘well, I’ve never been there before, and it’s been so long now… so why bother going now…’…

    and now that option’s being taken away from me…

    Now I can’t go “I’m stickin’ to my guns I refuse to go to Wally’s Burgers”…

    I never would have guessed that it was lime green… the building, NOT the burgers in case anyone was wondering… ; P

    God Bless,
    Yoon

  55. Sandra Sigfusson says:

    I haven’t been to the Wally’s Burger joint in 26 years – a place we frequented while in high school. I had no idea it was still open until you mentioned it was closing down. I guess all good things must come to an end. Thanks for the heads up. I’ll have to stop in for one last nostalgic burger.

  56. ismabera says:

    I do not eat burgers often but this picture of burger made me 🙂 hungry.
    Do they deliver burgers in 😯 Slovenia?

  57. Chip says:

    I guess not, but if they deliver in Slovenia, please ask them to make a round trip to Romania, too.

  58. Monty says:

    I just had a burger, fries and a large banana shake at Wally’s this evening. If you have never been there…check it out before they close. Tasty burgers, decent fries…and the shake was awesome!
    God Bless!
    Monty

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