One brave man recently accepted quite the challenge when he agreed to work, and document, a 24-hour shift at his favorite restaurant: Waffle House. Bon Appetit‘s Andrew Knowlton traveled back to his hometown of Atlanta, Georgia (where the first Waffle House was opened in 1955) for this assignment and cites that the delicious, hangover-curing, food-coma inducing, extremely affordable food chain has always been one of his favorites. Today Waffle House, famously known for being open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, has over 1,700 locations all over the south.
“Am I going to sleep? I feel like it’s the night before the SATs,” joked Knowlton about his nerves. The 24-hour shift started at 7am and preparations included shaving (employees must either be clean shaven or wear a beard guard), putting on the Waffle House uniform and getting to know his fellow employees.
The following 24 hours were eye-opening, as Knowlton not only had to learn to perfectly mix the waffle batter (which Wa-Ho does using a power drill attached to a whisk), crack an egg with one hand and keep track of customers’ orders, but also had to fight off the urge to nap and stay awake for an entire day straight.
Andrew got a second wind around 2AM, when the bars in Atlanta let out and hungry late-nighters all flocked to the breakfast beacon. Lucky for us, Andrew filmed his entire experience, including the hilariously rowdy late-night crowd, which you can watch in the video below.
“I can’t put it into words, I’m so tired right now,” said Andrew in the video after successfully making it through his marathon of a work shift. “I had a love for the Waffle House before this, and now I have a complete appreciation and admiration for the whole process.”
Although it was utterly exhausting, the challenge seemed to be a rewarding experience for Andrew – and viewers everywhere – who were able to witness the hard work that goes into serving the delicious food that Waffle House provides every day.