American restaurants outside of the U.S.?
December 15, 2013 3:30 PM   Subscribe

I'm an American who has done a fair amount of travel in Mexico and Europe, and in all those travels I don't remember ever coming across a non-hamburger-centric American-style restaurant*.

Yes, there are certainly American-style restaurants outside of the U.S., but every one I've seen does hamburgers, hot dogs, fries, milkshakes, and not much else. This is very American, yes, but a huge chunk of classic American cuisine seems to be totally left out.

I'm talking about what we call "comfort food". Meatloaf, macaroni and cheese, fried chicken, corn bread, baked beans, peach cobbler, sheet cake - that kind of thing. Or it could get more regional: southern ("soul food"), Cajun/creole, New England, etc. Greens, grits, smothered pork chops. Gumbo, jambalaya. Clam chowder. You get the idea.

So are there restaurants that focus on this kind of food outside of the U.S.? I'm most curious about (major cities of) Europe, but would be interest to hear about such restaurants in any part of the world.

While we're at it, if these do exist, I'd like to know how authentic these places are, and how much the food (and atmosphere) is influenced by the culture around them.

* Well, with one exception: the Mexican chain Carlos and Charlie's. Although they barely go beyond burgers n' fries with their American-style bar food, from what I remember.
posted by Mechitar to Food & Drink (52 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Oh, and BBQ joints would be another great example!
posted by Mechitar at 3:34 PM on December 15, 2013

Joe Allen in London probably just about qualifies, though it certainly does have plenty of burgers too.
posted by oliverburkeman at 3:39 PM on December 15, 2013

Munich, Germany only has Burger Style american restaurants AFAIK. I've always classified Pizza Hut as American comfort food - it's nothing like Italian pizza and it wouldn't cross my mind to call it an italian restaurant. German cuisine has food similar to Mac'n'Cheese (Käsespätzle) and Fried Chicken (Backhendl) so there's no need for that. Actually, many of the foods you mention are European in origin and would not feel sufficiently American to Europeans because of these similarities.

Bbq: Bavarian Beergardens frequently offer Spare Ribs, so the concept of American BBQ is well known, but I've never noticed restaurants specializing in American BBQ.
posted by The Toad at 3:41 PM on December 15, 2013 [1 favorite]

There are certainly KFCs in Mexico. I've also seen Dominos and Pizza Hut.
posted by chrchr at 3:42 PM on December 15, 2013

This won't answer your question but it's shocking, speaking as an American emigrant who's lived in Canada for almost 17 years and in two cities that are both often lambasted for being American city wannabes (Toronto and Calgary) how horrible Canadian restaurants are at pulling off American regional food. I can't think of a single Cajun place in Calgary for example and the one I knew of in Toronto (Southern Accent, near Honest Ed's) was so bad that it didn't even have red beans and rice on the menu. A joke. What they call "Chicago style pizza" here- it's a sin. I could go on and on but you're only going to find the worst of American chains in Canada; Applebee's and Olive Garden, for example, but no southern food, no Cajun, no real tex-mex, no Southwestern, no New England anything. We- and that goes just as much for Calgary, a city of dramatic multiculturalism, as it does for Toronto- have an almost paralyzing number of ethnic options, but not American. BBQ is getting better coast to coast but that's about it.
posted by ethnomethodologist at 3:49 PM on December 15, 2013 [1 favorite]

That kind of restaurant prevails outside the U.S. for the same reason that stereotypical Chinese and Mexican restaurants prevail here: That is what customers expect and are looking for. Serving meatloaf or barbecue to a European audience would lead to disbelief on the part of most patrons.
posted by yclipse at 3:51 PM on December 15, 2013 [1 favorite]

In the 1980s when I was student in London, there was a Texas theme restaurant (steaks and burgers mostly) near the house I lived in. We used to go there for the apple pie. Unfortunately I don't remember what it was called and it is probably long gone.
posted by interplanetjanet at 3:52 PM on December 15, 2013

A few used to open up in Glasgow when I was a student. They'd last about a year then close. I saw two problems:
  • most local people didn't know what to order, so they'd stick with burgers. There wasn't enough of a tourist trade to sustain demand, as "American" food is incredibly regional and they couldn't make one of lots of different kinds of dishes every night.
  • the supply chain wasn't there: the wrong kind of flour, different shortening, no corn syrup. Having tried to do a couple of US style Thanksgivings in Scotland, you'd have to rely on expensive imported ingredients. Since one of the hallmarks of American food is the robust portions, it just didn't work.
Scotland puts mac and cheese in a pie and deep fries it. We're hardcore. You wouldn't eat out to have meatloaf; that's what you do with leftovers. Chicago style pizza is a mysterious sloppy mess to the rest of the world. In Toronto, we don't have the fresh fish to do New England. We also have so many other cultures here that can do food so good you'll weep (srsly: the shawarma I had last night on Lawrence East made me misty-eyed), why would anyone want second-rate facsimile food?
posted by scruss at 3:58 PM on December 15, 2013 [2 favorites]

If chain restaurants count for this question there is an IHOP in Kuwait and iirc another somewhere else in the Middle East. Bahrain, maybe?
posted by elizardbits at 3:59 PM on December 15, 2013

American-style brunch is popular in Korea. These restaurants were first located in the foreigners' neighborhood of Itaewon, but after Sex and the City became a worldwide phenomenon, they proliferated.
posted by spamandkimchi at 4:00 PM on December 15, 2013 [2 favorites]

I am revealing my love of terrible TV with this, but there was Momma Cherri's Soul Food in the UK. It closed for a variety of reasons, but she still does workshops and festivals and catering. The UK Kitchen Nightmares episode her restaurant was on discusses some of the challenges in unfamiliar regional cuisines.
posted by cobaltnine at 4:23 PM on December 15, 2013 [1 favorite]

Bar Brouw, a BBQ joint in Amsterdam just opened recently. American craft beers and huge bourbon menu. Not bad, not whole authentic, but the meat was good and we enjoyed our meal.
posted by humboldt32 at 4:28 PM on December 15, 2013

I saw a restaurant called Cajun Brasserie near Taksim Square in Istanbul, when I was visiting a couple years ago. I read the menu outside but did not eat there.

It was absolutely not Cajun in any regard.

I just googled it to refresh my memory about what was on the menu (my only distinct thought was "totally not Cajun"). Here it is.

Highlights include "American Breakfast", which is basically a Turkish-style breakfast that includes pancakes and home fries, burritos, Caesar Salad, a bunch of meat courses that don't read as being specifically American to me, but which one can definitely find in the US (grilled chicken, fish, etc). They also have pasta and a whole Turkish menu for people who can't stomach the exoticness of "American"cuisine.

You can also have a cheeseburger, of course.
posted by Sara C. at 4:28 PM on December 15, 2013 [1 favorite]

Meilleurs restaurants américains at At the moment, they list 314 of them across France, however, many are indeed burger joint type places that wouldn't meet your criteria.
posted by gimonca at 4:29 PM on December 15, 2013

I guess I should also mention that the Bierfabriek serves a mean fried chicken.
posted by humboldt32 at 4:31 PM on December 15, 2013

In Madrid there is a great Cajun restaurant called Gumbo ( one of two Cajun restaurants in the city that I know of, but I can't remember what the other is called), and American-style bruch is really big here, too. Carmencita has one I like.
posted by lollymccatburglar at 4:33 PM on December 15, 2013

I've eaten Tex-Mex in a bar/hotel lobby in Aberdeen. In the Saudi Aramco compound, there's a Pizza Hut. There's a big Kenny Rogers Roasters chicken place in Kuala Lumpur, pretty much just down the road from the huge Starbucks. In these cases, the energy industry has something to do with it -- lots of expats, and each one wants a taste of home every now and then.

You can get macaroni and cheese, potato skins, sad BBQ, peanut butter pie, fajitas, and other American things wherever there's a Hard Rock Cafe (they are in 53 countries).
posted by Houstonian at 4:47 PM on December 15, 2013

As a traveling American, I was somewhat embarrassed to have ended up eating at The Creole Restaurant in Galway city. We were actually there not out of homesickness but because our hosts went there for vegetarian food. It definitely wasn't 100% authentic, but more in a fun gastropub kind of way than in a can't figure out how to do it right kind of way. i.e imagine an upscale "new traditions" kind of place in Louisiana.
posted by aimedwander at 4:47 PM on December 15, 2013

I know TGI Friday's is in several cities overseas because I was doing a business event and we wound up having a night's dinner at TGI Friday's and the Americans were just THRILLED to fly thousands of miles and wind up eating at the same place they'd eat in a strip mall in their home town. Likewise, Hard Rock Cafe is everywhere.

In Oslo, there are several bars that try to be American-style pubs/sports bars and serve the same sort of bar food you'd find there. There's also a string of steakhouses that are supposed to be Texas-style steakhouses but are pale imitations of same. There's also a Florida-inspired diner that's sort of a Jimmy Buffet's Margaritaville Cafe if someone described it over a bad phone line.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 4:57 PM on December 15, 2013

I ate at a tex-mex place in Granada, Nicaragua that was pretty fantastic, but there are a lot of expats there.
posted by empath at 4:59 PM on December 15, 2013

In Guatemala:
  • American-style mayonnaise-based pasta salad has caught on as a fancy middle-class food, though I've never seen it in a restaurant — it's what you serve at home on the weekends if you've got some money to spare.
  • Fried chicken is omnipresent, to the point where it doesn't even count as "American food" anymore — it's been adopted as a local specialty. Same with french fries.
  • Pizza Hut is in all the big cities, and there are a ton of local Pizza Hut knockoffs.
  • There's a local restaurant chain that does a pretty spectacular imitation of Denny's/TGI Friday's style American casual-dining food, down to details like ginormous breakfast skillets and weird decorative crap hanging on the walls.
  • There are a few Starbucks-esque coffee chains that serve American-style desserts: brownies and muffins and so on.
  • I know of at least one BBQ restaurant, though it's in a pretty tourist-oriented area.
  • There's steakhouses in big cities. Some of them have vaguely-Texan decor, though I don't know if there's anything really American about them beyond that.

posted by Now there are two. There are two _______. at 5:02 PM on December 15, 2013

I went to a few vegetarian restaurants in Japan that very much pulled from the American hippie/Moosewood aesthetic. Salads with garbanzo beans, veggie chili, pitas, that sort of thing. It's not so much a regional cuisine, but as the food I was largely raised on, it was very distinctive, and also totally separate from the Japanese Buddhist vegetarian culinary tradition. I'm forgetting a lot of details at this point, but the pleasure of eating beans that weren't corn-syrup-sweet has stuck with me.

They also had pizza that had clearly come by way of America and not straight from Italy, but which had options for toppings like crab and mayo. (Pizza Hut is there but I think there were other knockoff chains.)
posted by tchemgrrl at 5:06 PM on December 15, 2013

Paris has an American diner. I haven't been inside, but the menu seems to sample widely from American-style food.

In Asia, there are a lot of American-style foods beyond hamburgers available:

When I was in Kathmandu, it had a plethora of American-style restaurants that did not lean heavily on hamburgers, probably because a lot of American expats lived there. The best were a pair of restaurants owned by a former Peace Corps volunteer that served American breakfast (pancakes, bacon and eggs, etc), plus things like burritos. There was also a place that sold shakes and smoothies, which seems fairly American.

Oh, and Kathmandu also had a great sandwich shop that was Wizard of Oz themed and served American-style sandwiches like Reubens.

KFC and Pizza Hut were widely available in Thailand before McDonald's and Burger King. I remember when I was studying abroad in a provincial city in Northeastern Thailand (a very rural, agrarian area with few international chains) and we met the owner of the city's first mall, which had a KFC but no McDonald's. He told us the people in that city "weren't ready" for McDonald's yet (they got one a few years later).

I suspect that hamburgers took longer to take off in places like Nepal and Thailand because beef is not commonly eaten in either country - in Nepal it's for religious reasons, and in Thailand it's just not traditional. Whereas in Europe it was easier for hamburgers to take off because people were already used to eating beef, and even ground beef.
posted by lunasol at 5:07 PM on December 15, 2013

Paris has an American diner. I haven't been inside, but the menu seems to sample widely from American-style food.

I was just going to mention Breakfast In America. I've eaten there; it's good!

Paris also has Twinkie Breakfasts, which while not exclusively American does have American breakfast.
posted by asterix at 5:15 PM on December 15, 2013 [1 favorite]

In Paris there is a chain of restaurants called Indiana - English review | official site
posted by candyland at 5:49 PM on December 15, 2013

A restaurant has recently opened in Canberra (Australia) that claims to cook that sort of thing. I've never been there myself, but the menu is here [pdf]. I've heard inconsistent things about it from some of our friends who are American ex-pats.

As scruss mentions above, however, apparently it's quite difficult to get some of the ingredients needed to make some of the dishes. The aforementioned American friends can't get some particular form of flour they use in tortias (or something similar) for example. The kind of pumpkin that is used in pumpkin pie is also hard to get, I'm told.

But there are plenty of other countries cuisines that aren't widely available at restaurants aroundt he world either, so it's not unique to American regional specialities either.
posted by damonism at 6:07 PM on December 15, 2013

There are lots of American restaurants that go beyond hamburgers in Beijing, shanghai, and a few other cities in china. Most are owned by Americans and are pretty authentic.
posted by bearette at 6:13 PM on December 15, 2013 [1 favorite]

"every one I've seen does hamburgers, hot dogs, fries, milkshakes, and not much else. This is very American, yes, but a huge chunk of classic American cuisine seems to be totally left out"

One thing to bear in mind is that it's the same with foreign restaurants here in America; they also tend to concentrate on cliches of the cuisine back home...even in restaurants which cook authentically. Jamaican is way more than jerk chicken and beef patties. Japanese is way more than sushi and noodles. Etc etc ad infinitum. Travelers find tons of depth never experienced in "ethnic" restaurants back home.

Foreign restaurants (of nearly any sort in any place) serve two needs: 1. offering expats the comfort foods of back home, and/or 2. pandering to the preconceptions of locals. Neither provides much incentive to offer a really broad range. Things broaden a bit when there's a really large expat community to support more depth (e.g. Chinatowns).
posted by Quisp Lover at 6:50 PM on December 15, 2013 [3 favorites]

One of my favourite Sydney restaurants - Hartsyard - does an interesting take on Southern US food. Most of their stuff is not hamburger based.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 7:07 PM on December 15, 2013

Montreal's Dinette Triple Crown (sorry, they only have Facebook, not a real website) has things like pulled pork and macaroni cheese. People seem to think they're good. Some reviews here.
posted by zadcat at 7:21 PM on December 15, 2013

This might not count as outside the U.S. because Puerto Rico is United States territory, but the number of Subway and Sizzler restaurants in Old San Juan, San Juan proper, and on out to Luquillo and Fajardo, is alarming.
posted by emelenjr at 7:24 PM on December 15, 2013

Ah, just remembered: there's a Chi-Chi's in the middle of Brussels. Apparently the brand survives in Belgium after disappearing in the U.S.
posted by gimonca at 7:27 PM on December 15, 2013

There was a Tex Mex restaurant (called first Señor Pepe and then Don Pepe) in Chennai, India, when I grew up there. Not sure if it's still around. The food was actually quite good, though they often had trouble sourcing ingredients e.g. corn for the tortillas and chips.
posted by peacheater at 7:32 PM on December 15, 2013

Ruth's Chris Steak House has locations in Mexico, Asia and Dubai. Not sure if they carry the same New Orleans-style entrees, but it's still a little piece of the US abroad.
posted by tafetta, darling! at 7:51 PM on December 15, 2013

I'm pretty sure there is (or was) a Taco Bell in Mexico City, which kind of seemed like irony just folded in on itself and dissolved into a singularity.

This was 13 years ago, but I also ate at a Shoney's/Denney's type place on a road trip outside Mexico City, although I can't remember the name of it. It was a chain. They had pancakes and french toast and other diner fare, but of course also had Mexican dishes.
posted by elizeh at 7:51 PM on December 15, 2013

For some reason, I always wander across Tex Mex places in Europe. The first one I remember is The Studio in Paris. There are a number of them in Germany, I've seen them in Munich and Hamburg for sure. The one I could find online in Hamburg is called Santa Fe, unlike The Studio, the menu doesn't remotely resemble Tex Mex. I'm almost certain that I've seen another one, but Google fails me. Many times what they call Tex Mex is really just what we'd consider a neighborhood Mexican place.

You also sometimes see BBQ restaurants in Europe. They are almost uniformly terrible. I remember looking in the door at Pitt Bros BBQ in Dublin and walking away. A friend swears to me that there is a really good BBQ joint in London, but I am highly skeptical.

I've also seen restaurants with a New Orleans theme. As a rule, they have no idea what food is actually like in New Orleans. Big Easy in Hamburg, for example.

Restaurants declaring themselves "American Style Steakhouses" are fairly ubiquitous, but I'm not sure they count. As noted above, American fast food chains are sadly everywhere. You find places that do American breakfast in the oddest corners of the world. I stumbled across one in Bangkok last year.
posted by Lame_username at 9:06 PM on December 15, 2013

Oregon Bar & Grill, Tokyo.
posted by MeanwhileBackAtTheRanch at 9:46 PM on December 15, 2013

Staggering amounts of this stuff in Dubai, the rest of the UAE, Saudi Arabia, etc.

IHOP, Texas Roadhouse, Red Lobster, Baja Fresh in various places, a Kenny Rogers (Rodgers?) Fried Chicken in Khobar, KSA. What else? Cheesecake Factory in Dubai, Popeye's all over the UAE, vast numbers of KFCs and Pizza Huts all over the region, a couple locally owned Tex-Mex places in Dubai, various places in the region that try to do American-style BBQ ribs, etc. Domino's throughout the region, Papa John's, Round Table.
posted by ambient2 at 9:59 PM on December 15, 2013

The Gateway Diner in the Netherlands serves "American" food, although the menu is heavy on the burgers. There's also Popocatepetl and Los Pilones, for Tex-Mex.

This isn't really food, but humboldt32's mention of Bar Brouw made me think of Beer Temple (also in Amsterdam). They serve a lot of American craft beers.

Of course, KFC, McDonald's, Burger King, and Subway are very common here.
posted by neushoorn at 12:26 AM on December 16, 2013

I live immediately south of Seoul, and my town features a chain American-style buffet (Ashley), an Outback (which I believe is an American chain), a Korean chain called Kofoo Plate that does western-style dinners, a cheesecake cafe, a Dunkin' Donuts, a Starbucks (duh!), a Baskin Robbins, a Dominos Pizza and a handful of fast food burger places.

Other chains like KFC and Subway are also around, though not near where I am.

Seoul's Itaewon district offers food from across the globe, and that includes the numerous American-style Thanksgiving dinners (which I recently shopped around for) plus some American-style diners and such.

So yes, definitely.
posted by charlemangy at 12:29 AM on December 16, 2013

We've got four privately-run American places in Nice, three of them run by Americans. They're all good:

Texas City, run by a Texan-French couple. Hearty, authentic, and spicy, yum. The atmosphere is definitely laid-back Texan: the restaurant is large and spacious, filled with Texan deco the owners pick up on their returns to the husband's home state. He's a soft-spoken sort, speaks excellent French; people are sometimes surprised when he introduces himself as the owner, which he doesn't always do. He tends to keep an observant eye on folk.

Emilie's Cookies has been a huge hit since it opened. It's run by two Frenchwomen, but they definitely know American-style pastries: cupcakes, cookies, bagels, cheesecakes. Feels like a cozy American-style café.

Le Speakeasy, a tiny vegan restaurant run by a woman originally from California who's been in Nice for 20+ years now. She has some deee-licious pies, savory and sweet. She also knows gluten-free. The atmosphere of this restaurant is so true to West Coast hippy that I feel like I'm back in Eugene whenever I visit.

Then there's Woody's Diner, which is pretty much exactly what it says it is: classic 50s-style diner. Hamburgers, milkshakes, etc. For that reason, I haven't been there, wouldn't be able to speak to its quality. Everyone keeps telling me I have to go for their homemade hamburgers, and I'm like, I'm American, I know how to make hamburgers at home ;) (that and I doubt they have gluten-free buns.)

As for chains, Subway has become popular. KFC has a hard time making inroads. McDonald's, yes. No Burger King; there's a European chain named "Quick" that fills a similar niche. A better American-style French chain is Hippopotamus, they have excellent beef.
posted by fraula at 12:30 AM on December 16, 2013 [1 favorite]

Bagelmama in Kraków!
posted by mdonley at 12:58 AM on December 16, 2013

In India, there's a huge chain of Cosi-type cafes, called Cafe Coffee Day, which serve the usual American cafe food -- sandwiches, pastries, brownies, ice cream, etc. Everything was bland but OK, and tasted basically American rather than Indian, but the coffee was terrible (as in, undrinkable -- it had a grounds:water ratio of about 1:3). I've also eaten at Domino's and McDonald's in Delhi. Both restaurants were quite good (surprisingly good), though the McDonald's was mostly vegetarian and even how things were flavored was pretty different from how it is in McDonald's restaurants in the US. They also have KFC and Popeye's but I've never eaten fried chicken in India. Oh, and I've also eaten at a Western-style cafe in Agra right by the Taj that had a lot of legitimately American food on the menu -- the owner had lived in the US for a long time previous to going back to India and opening the cafe (my friend insisted on talking politics with him for a very, very long time). The cafe was geared mostly to Western tourists and even served beer, though they wrapped it very discreetly in a big napkin so nobody could see what I was drinking. It's pretty easy to get packaged American food on basically any street-corner there, though.

I've also eaten at a McDonald's and a TGIFriday's in Moscow. The McDonald's was very similar to McDonald's stores in the US -- same menu, down to the McFlurrys, and same flavors. It was super popular, probably because the meat and dairy was much higher quality than you could get basically anywhere else for anywhere near the price (that's why I went there so much, anyway). There's also a Blindonald's chain that is supposed to be copied on McDonald's but with a more Russian take on the food (really, really horrible). I don't remember how American the menu/flavors/food at TGIFriday's seemed, because all I remember ordering was a sinus-clearing, crazy-making glass of absinthe. There were lots of other places, usually called "[Something] Cafe," that claimed to offer some sort of mish-mash of Not Russian food, but I never ate anything that actually tasted American at any of them. There was a really noticeable lack of variation and quality in the kind of ingredients/food (excepting Russian specialties, like salmon roe) that you could get at basically any price in Russia, so I think it would be impossible to open an American restaurant there unless you could link it to a huge/international corporate supply chain (like corporate restaurants like TGIFriday's and McDonald's do).

I've *attempted* to eat American food in London a zillion times, because plenty of places advertise it (usually not in a dedicated restaurant, more like just a dish or two on the menu), but oddly, though the ingredients have often been right, and the food has often tasted good, the recipes have always been completely not American-style. So on the one hand, it's not too hard to find a place to reserve an American Thanksgiving dinner basically anywhere (I've even eaten it on a "party" yacht on the Thames), the food you're likely to eat is some strange mix of "oh that was so close!" dishes, like sweet potatoes roasted jacket potato-style with the skin still on, and roast beef instead of turkey or ham. The only place I've successfully had American food in England is at a little cafe boat in Stratford-upon-Avon, which for some reason sold really delicious, and very American-tasting, turkey/cranberry sauce/stuffing sandwiches (at just any old time of year).
posted by rue72 at 1:23 AM on December 16, 2013

I've been wanting to try The Smoke in Brisbane for a while.
posted by h00py at 4:08 AM on December 16, 2013

There was a soul food restaurant in Brighton, Mama Cherry's, but it didn't do well - mainly because soul food isn't well known here.

There's a big explosion of 'US-style diners' here at the moment, but they tend to stick to burgers and hotdogs, and they don't necessarily strive to be authentic (cf. MEATliquor). There is an Italian-American chain, Frankie and Benny's, which I think aims to pretend to be a neighbourhood Italian. There's a Taco Bell Mexican-American type food place in Manchester, which I think might be the only one in the country rather than a chain. We also just got Chipotle last year, though nobody seems to agree on how to pronounce it yet.

You probably know about strange regional variations in Pizza Hut, but we had reindeer pizza in Finland.
posted by mippy at 4:34 AM on December 16, 2013

Beijing has got the great old favorite American Steak & Eggs around the corner from the bizarre pre-Deng Friendship Store*, run by a Canadian and famous to North American homesick ex-pats for it's Thanksgiving dinners in October and November, which are actually a really good taste of home cooking.

*Note: the Friendship Store is a throwback to the pre-reform days before currency could be used to purchase goods. They used to check ID at the door as it was only available to foreigners. I have no idea how or why it is still in business, there never seem to be more than a couple customers, but it is at least a good place to find authentic regional craftwork, the prices aren't great, but at least you feel less like you are getting knock-offs.

Oh, yeah, and I almost forgot, around the other corner from there is a not-great Tex-Mex place, that is like getting warped into an El Chico with Chinese waiters!
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 5:52 AM on December 16, 2013

Christopher's Martini Bar and Grill in Covent Garden, London and Bodean's BBQ at various other spots around London.
posted by fatfrank at 6:43 AM on December 16, 2013

Kansas, in Buenos Aires Argentina is a high-end barbecue type joint. Think Ribs/Steaks/Baked Potatoes and Casear Salads.

It was awesome.
posted by OuttaHere at 7:12 AM on December 16, 2013 [1 favorite]

Muffins are everywhere in Europe now- definitely an American thing. Horrible Styrofoam crap compared to local baked delicacies that are better than anything you'd find in American bakeries or coffeehouses but people insist on eating those horrible muffins.
posted by ethnomethodologist at 9:34 AM on December 16, 2013

Well, apparently there's this place in Denmark, called Bone's.

Looks pretty good!
posted by Dynex at 9:55 AM on December 16, 2013

Outtahere beat me to Kansas in Argentina. What is really odd is how much they are trying to be like the Houston's (now called Hillstone) restaurant chain. It was all about the ribs and they suppossedly had the only decent Casear salad in Argentina.

There is also Tucson. I never ate there but it seemed to be the same idea as Kansas.

There were a couple other expat restaurants serving yanqui fare. Typically wings and burgers. The Alamo sports bar and Sugar whose former owner is a Mefite living in Barcelona these days.
posted by Che boludo! at 12:57 PM on December 16, 2013

Do Irish bars count? I don't know how many Irish Bars I've been to in Latin America that honestly couldn't be distinguished from another in North America other than by the language spoken.
posted by Che boludo! at 1:08 PM on December 16, 2013

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