Originally named Casa Del Taco (House of the Taco), the first Del Taco restaurant was founded in Yermo, California in 1964 by Ed Hackbarth. On the restaurant’s first official day of business, Del Taco made $169. In 1964, Hackbarth partnered with real estate broker David Jameson. Success of the first restaurant led to three in Barstow and a fourth restaurant in Corona (the first Del Taco with a drive-thru window). Dick Naugle, who installed the kitchen equipment in the Corona store, was impressed by the design and joined Hackbarth and Jameson in the fledgling business. In 1966, the trio founded Red-E-Food Systems, Inc. with the idea of franchising the Casa Del Taco brand. That same year, the original Del Taco sun logo was created and in 1967, Del Taco introduced their famous bean and cheese burrito with green or red sauce to their menu. Before long, the restaurants were being founded throughout Southern California.
By the 1970s, Del Taco became a franchise of change. Naugle left the company early in the decade to start his own Mexican fast food chain, Naugles. In 1973, the company dropped “Casa” from its name and Red-E-Food Systems became Del Taco, Inc. By that time, the company was enjoying a remarkable growth spurt; during one period, they were opening a new restaurant every month. However, in 1976, Hackbarth and Jameson sold Del Taco to a group of investors. The new owners sold the exclusive rights to use and develop the Del Taco name throughout the United States (excluding California; Eugene, Oregon; and Yuma, Arizona) to the W.R. Grace & Company. Grace, primarily a chemicals company, founded a new company, Del Taco Restaurants Inc. of Dallas, Texas, and a new subsidiary, DTG Inc., to oversee the various fast food chains it was acquiring. Nonetheless, the franchise continued to expand. In 1977, there were 50 Del Taco restaurants. A year later in 1978, there were 100. As Del Taco expanded, so did their menu. They included new items such as the Bun Taco, quesadillas, and ice cream sundaes.
Monday, January 18, 2010
Del Taco - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia