North Bay lays claim to Hamilton's Tim Hortons origins story

Some in North Bay are taking issue with Hamilton's Tim Hortons origins story. Those who remember a burger joint that opened in the city in the early '60's say you've got to look north to find the donut chain's real birth place.

Schwabe: 'First restaurant was not in Hamilton, but in North Bay'

Tim Horton's is known for coffee and doughnuts but the popular coffee chain used to be known for burgers. The first Tim Hortons restaurant was in North Bay and sold hamburgers instead of coffee. (Supplied/network54.com)

Oh, it's ON, North Bay.

We're very fond of our CBC colleagues in Northern Ontario. They've got a great story about a moose calf wandering around Sudbury that you should check out:

But they've spoken some fighting words. They're attempting to stake a claim on Hamilton history. Now, Tim Hortons may not be your cup of tea. Some say that Hamilton's best donuts are made at Grandad's on James North at Burlington St.. Cruller for cruller they're better than the more famous store that began on 65 Ottawa St. in Hamilton in 1964.

Schwabe: 'First restaurant was not in Hamilton, but in North Bay'

All of this is a matter of fact and, for some in Hamilton, pride. Now along come our friends to the north who have a different story to tell. And here it is: CBC Morning North's Markus Schwabe says this about Tim Horton: "His first restaurant was not in Hamilton but in North Bay. It opened on Lakeshore Drive in the early '60's and it sold hamburgers not donuts."

Schwabe spoke with Dan Hokstad, a regular at Tim Horton's burger joint in North Bay. He says, "I loved the Tim Hortons hot dogs. The thing I remember the most is that they burnt them. In the modern era not a good thing."

Hokstad says "in all the Hubadoo about Hamilton being the first Tim Hortons. It runs the wrong way in North Bay because we know this restaurant predated it by a couple of years."

Take a listen. It's a great interview.


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