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Birth of the Legend, the Tony Roma's Story

Tony Roma’s is a full service, casual dining family restaurant where you can find premier BBQ ribs and steaks in locations across the world. With over 150 family restaurant locations on six continents, Tony Roma’s is one of the most globally recognizable names in the industry.

Tony Roma's Goes International

In 1980, everything changed for Tony Roma’s. We opened our first international location in Tokyo, Japan! With numerous other openings, Tony Roma’s now had locations in North America, Canada and Tokyo, Japan…let the journey begin!

1980
1980

First restaurant internationally opened in Tokyo, Japan.

1983
1983

Canada’s first Tony Roma’s opened in Winnipeg.

Tony Roma’s won “Best Ribs in America” in a national rib-eating contest, judged by an international panel, in Cleveland, OH. Going forward, we would win this award many more times.

1987

Tony Roma’s Miami Lakes opened and the Carolina Honeys Barbecue Sauce was made from scratch.

1989
1989

Reported by the Los Angeles Times – The 5th Annual Celebrity Rib-Eating Contest was held on September 24, 1989 at Tony Roma’s, Universal City and netted $20,000. Proceeds went to the Starlight Foundation of Southern California.

It's All About the Ribs

The 90’s were a busy time for us. Not only did we begin with an aggressive expansion in Asia, but we also began offering two additional barbecue sauces; Blue Ridge Smokies and Red Hots to be exact. Along with an expansion in Southeast Asia, we also opened in South America with locations in Peru and Venezuela, along with a location in Central America in El Salvador. But wait, we can’t forget about the introduction of the Romarita (cocktails just make a meal better)!

1994
1994

We began aggressive expansion in Asia, opening the first restaurant in a number of SE Asia countries including Jakarta, Indonesia.

1994
1994

Locations were opened in Peru.

Tony Roma’s developed and began offering two additional barbecue sauces: Blue Ridge Smokies ,and Red Hots.

1998

El Salvador was the first location to open in Central America in 1998.

1999
1999

Locations were opened in Venezuela.

The Romarita was developed and the drinks began to flow!

Changing of the Guard

Even with the retiring of Chef David Smith, our original chef, and the loss of Tony Roma; Tony Roma’s kept things cooking in the kitchen! Between the years of 2001 and 2006 Tony Roma’s began to experiment with new menu items — one dish stole the show, our Famous Kickin’ Shrimp. Things began to heat up with the introduction of Executive Chef Bob Gallagher in the year 2006. Bringing an extensive culinary background, including the ability to blend flavors from all over the world; Chef Gallagher began to bring Tony Roma’s to the forefront of polished casual restaurants.

2001
2001

David Smith, the original chef, retired on July 2, 2001. He was the chef that created many of the signature dishes for Tony Roma’s, including our world famous baby back ribs.

2003
2003

We may have lost the man, but we’ll never lose his name and legacy. Tony Roma passed on June 13, 2003.

2004
2004

Kickin’ Shrimp added to the Tony Roma’s Menu.

2005

Dubai opened in 2005, the first Middle East Tony Roma’s.

2006
2006

Bob Gallagher joined on August 16, 2006 as the first executive chef .

Unstoppable Growth

Powered by fun, freedom and sauce, Tony Roma’s has celebrated over 40 years of business! With a flavorful menu changing from season to season and openings stretching from New York to Ireland, this decade looks to be extremely bright!

2012

Tony Roma’s celebrates 40 years of business!

2014
2014

For the year of 2014, we’ll just let the ribs do the talking

2015
2015

As the first American restaurant brand to open in Myanmar, Tony Roma’s announced it’s grand opening in the month of January 2015. located in the country’s former capital city of Yangon, the commercial center and largest city in the country with a population of more than 5 million people!

Now and Future, Keeping the Tradition
KEEPING THE TRADITION

Since its beginning nearly 40 years ago, Tony Roma’s has been focused on serving its signature Baby Back Ribs. The company has won numerous awards across the country for the “Best Ribs” and also has won nationally acclaimed industry recognition as “The Best Ribs in America.”

Tony Roma’s is not just a place for ribs anymore. We have expanded our menu to focus on variety for all guests; not just rib eaters. We have an extensive selection of Steaks and Seafood entrees along with the most unique appetizers and mini desserts in our segment today. We have redesigned our buildings and our service to meet the ever-changing mindset of our guests.

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