[WorldKings - Wowtimes - Almanac Events & Achievements 2023] Milestones that make up the 40-year history of Panda Express, the largest Chinese restaurant chain in the US (1983)


(worldKings.org) Panda Express is an American fast food restaurant chain that specializes in American Chinese cuisine. With over 2,200 locations, it is the largest Asian-segment restaurant chain in the United States, where it was founded, and is mainly located in North America and Asia (in addition to other countries and territories). The company is headquartered in Rosemead, California.

Panda Express restaurants were traditionally located in shopping mall food courts, but the chain now operates units in many other environments and formats, including stand-alone restaurants, as well as universities, casinos, airports, military bases, amusement parks and other venues.



The chain offers a variety of Chinese cuisine–inspired dishes that has been largely Americanized, including orange chicken, sweet fire chicken breast, Beijing beef, grilled teriyaki chicken, and Kung Pao chicken, with certain premium dishes such as honey walnut shrimp and black pepper Angus steak having additional costs for the patron. The Panda Express brand is a casual, fast-food variation of corporate sibling Panda Inn, which is a chain of upscale, table service restaurants.

(WOWTIMES) The company’s milestones:

1983 - Andrew Cherng opens the first Panda Express at the Glendale Galleria in Glendale, California. Peggy Cherng customizes the restaurant's operating systems to assure the very best food and service.

1987 - Chef Andy Kao develops our signature dish: Orange Chicken. Inspired by the flavors of Hunan Province, the dish features crispy chicken bites in a sweet and spicy orange sauce.



1993 – The company celebrate its 10th anniversary by opening the 100th location on the UCLA campus.

1997 - The chain opened its first drive-thru restaurant in Hesperia, California, making it possible for Panda fans on the go to order and receive their food without ever leaving their cars.

1999 – The chain proudly launched  Panda Cares. Its philanthropic arm is dedicated to providing food, funding and volunteer services to underserved children and disaster relief efforts.

2002 - The chain introduced the Panda Kids Meal, offering guests with smaller appetites an entree, choice of noodles, rice or mixed veggies, a drink and a cookie.



2005 – The founders Andrew and Peggy Cherng are inducted into the California Restaurant Association Hall of Fame.

2008 - Beijing Beef is born as Panda Express celebrate its 25th anniversary. This dish brings together crispy strips of marinated beef, bell peppers and onions in a tangy-sweet sauce.

2009 - The chain introduced health-minded Wok Smart™ selections, menu items that are 300 calories or less and have at least 8 grams of protein. Eating well at Panda has never been easier.

2010 - Honey Walnut Shrimp makes its debut. The sweet and crispy creation is made with tempura shrimp wok-tossed in a honey sauce and topped with candied walnuts. It receives the MenuMasters Award for Best New Menu Item of the Year.



2011 – The chain opened its first international restaurant in Mexico City, Mexico. Since then, we have expanded to Guam, Puerto Rico, Canada, South Korea and Dubai.

2014 - The chain launched its Innovation Kitchen in Pasadena, California to serve as a living laboratory for exploring new menu items, new decor and new ways of serving our guests. The chain aslo debuted online ordering system and mobile app, making it possible to place orders at the touch of a button or the swipe of a screen.

2016 - The chain introduced the world to the Chork, an American Chinese original. The chopstick-fork-hybrid symbolized "a bridge between two cultures, an admission that chopstick mastery is for some, but rice should be for everyone,” said Jeremy Gordon, GQ.



February of 2022 - Panda Restaurant Group filed a U.S. trademark application for the name PANDAVERSE for “downloadable virtual goods, namely, food items and beverages for use in virtual worlds" and "virtual food and beverage products.” The filing marked an intention to expand the Panda Express brand into the Metaverse.

According to pandaexpress.ca; en.wikipedia.org. Source of photos: internet 

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