27 Buildings Shaped Like Food That's Sold There

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In 2010, Ethan Trex gave us a great list of buildings shaped like what they sell... but there are way more than just 10 buildings shaped like what they sell, so today we're back with more! (Thanks in part to the tips from all the commenters.)

These 27 buildings are all shaped like edible items, from fruit to soda, and most of them—at some point in time—were involved in the production or sale of those items.

FRUIT

Fruit-shaped buildings have been especially popular, perhaps in part because a sphere (for an apple or orange) is somewhat easier to construct than some other shapes.

The Big Apple

262 Orchard Road, Cramahe, Ontario K0K 1S0

Surprisingly, the Big Apple isn't in the Big Apple—New York City, that is—but instead in the apple-producing township of Cramahe, Ontario. Inside "the world's biggest apple" are a restaurant, pie bakery, gift shop, and observation deck; a petting zoo, nature trail, and mini golf course are also on the grounds. Photo by Flickr user Gillian (Everyspoon).

Gibeau Orange Julep

7700 Boulevard Décarie, Montréal, H4P 2H4


Hermas Gibeau built a 2-story concrete orange building in 1945 to house his family and his restaurant, where he served his trademark drink, the Gibeau Orange Julep. In 1966, the restaurant was moved and rebuilt larger out of of plastic pool segments; the whole building can now light up. Though there were once several giant Gibeau oranges in Montréal, this is the only one still standing. Photo by Flickr user lmnop88a.

Eli's Orange World

5395 W. Irlo Bronson Memorial Highway, Kissimmee, FL

Eli's Orange World lays claim to the title "world's largest orange" even though the building is technically only half an orange. This home base for the Orange World fruit shippers sells fruits, candies, jellies, juices, and souvenirs. Photo by Foursquare user Eric P.

The Big Orange (Berri)

Lot 3 Old Sturt Highway, Berri, South Australia 5343

Berri, South Australia, is home to orchards and vineyards and, since 1980, the Big Orange. The building houses a function room, a café / souvenir shop, a 360-degree mural of local scenery, and a lookout over the surrounding orchards. Unfortunately, the tourist attraction is currently closed, but there are plans to re-open it. Photo from Wikimedia Commons user Bilby.

The Big Orange (Gayndah)

25 Burnett Highway, Gayndah, Queensland 4625

The large orange in the center of Gayndah (Australia)—"the citrus capital of Queensland"—has acted as the town's visitors/information center; the building next door sells a variety of fruit, ice cream, and beverages. Photo by Flickr user Glenn (G4Glenno).

Mammoth Orange

103 N. Highway 365, Redfield, AR 72132

Inspired by a giant orange restaurant in Fresno, CA, Earnestine Bradshaw opened the Mammoth Orange in Arkansas in 1965. Earnestine served up orange juice and diner fare; since her death in 2007, the Mammoth Orange has continued on, operating as a roadside café and dairy bar. Photo by Amanda Galiano of About.com.

The Giant Orange

Mark's Hot Dogs, 48 South Capitol Avenue, San Jose, CA 95127

Frank E. Pohl started building a chain of "Giant Orange" stands in California in 1926; by the chain's peak in the '50s, there were 16 giant oranges. This particular one moved from Alum Rock Avenue to South Capitol Avenue in 1947 when it was incorporated into Mark's Hot Dogs, which has been around since 1936. Photo by Foursquare user Charles B.

Bono's Historic Orange

15395 Foothill Boulevard, Fontana, CA 92335

Bono's Historic Orange is reputedly the only remaining stand of a batch originally built to sell orange juice for the orange producers of Northern California. It was purchased by the Bono family and is located next to their Italian restaurant, which opened in 1936 to supplement the family's orange grove business. Apparently the stand and restaurant have been closed for a few years (though the community hopes they'll re-open). Photo by Flickr user Chuck Coker (Caveman Chuck Coker).

The Big Pineapple

Just off R67, Bathurst, South Africa

The Big Pineapple isn't just big—it's the "biggest pineapple in the world," standing 16.7 meters tall. The 3-story building houses a souvenir/gift shop, tourist information, a video of the pineapple industry, and an observation deck. Photo by Flickr user Randy OHC.

The Big Banana

351 Pacific Highway, Coffs Harbour, New South Wales 2450

John Landy built the Big Banana in 1964 to attract drivers to his roadside banana stand. Today, in addition to the walk-through banana, the attraction includes 20 plantation acres, a shop, a café, a theatre experience, a nursery, an ice rink, a toboggan ride, and an inflatable waterslide. Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Stuart Edwards.

FAST FOOD

Fast food restaurants, which are usually located close to major roads, have always tried to make their buildings eye-catching, but some go above and beyond with buildings shaped like their offerings.

Clam Box of Ipswich

246 High Street, Ipswich, MA 01938

The Clam Box is a New England tradition, serving up fried clams and other seafood for more than 70 years. Built in 1938, the building was shaped like the trapezoidal boxes in which clams-to-go are served. Photo by Flickr user Ed (Otterman56).

Tail o' the Pup


In 1946, the celebrity dance team Veloz and Yolanda opened a hot dog stand they named Tail o' the Pup. The stand relocated once in the '80s, but in 2005, its new site was purchased and the stand was evicted. Since then, it's been moved into a warehouse and declared a cultural landmark by the city; the current owners plan to re-open once they can find a suitable location. Photo from the now-defunct Tail o' the Pup website, via LAist.

Coney Island Colorado

10 Old Stagecoach Road, Bailey, CO 80421

This 42-feet-long hot dog has done it's fair share of traveling. It was built in 1966 in Denver, moved to Aspen Park 4 years later with a new name, and then relocated to Bailey in 2006 and was christened Coney Island Colorado. The line for food "extended literally for miles" on the diner's last day in Aspen Park. Photo by Wikipedia user John Perry.

The Big Chicken

12 Cobb Parkway N, Marietta, GA 30062

Marietta's famous "Big Chicken," complete with moving eyes and beak, was built in 1936 to advertise Johnny Reb's Chick, Chuck and Shake. In 1974, it was leased by KFC, who, at one point, attempted to move the landmark to nearby Smyrna but relented after an uproar. The chicken now bears Pepsi-Cola's logo as well, as the cola company chipped in to restore the bird after extensive tornado damage in 1996. The gift shop inside hawks Big Chicken souvenirs. Photo by Flickr user Kerry Vaughan (kerryvaughan).

World's Biggest Happy Meal

13105 Montfort Drive, Dallas, TX 75240

One of the McDonald's in Dallas was built to be the "world's biggest Happy Meal"—the PlayPlace forms the box, and the building is adorned with gigantic hamburgers, French fries, Cokes, and a Ronald McDonald. The unique kid-friendly exterior—it's the only Happy Meal-shaped McDonald's in the world—is in contrast to the classy interior: Austrian crystal chandeliers, Ralph Lauren wallpaper, granite floors, and mahogany booths. Photo via Google Maps StreetView.

The Donut Hole

15300 Amar Road, La Puente, CA 91744

The second Donut Hole shop was built sometime between 1947 and 1962; unlike the first location, though, this one was designed to look like two giant doughnuts through which the customers drive to place their orders. It's a local tradition for newlyweds to drive through, either for good luck or for the sexual symbolism. Photo by Flickr user soupstance.

COFFEE & TEA

Despite the seeming complexities of the coffee pot / tea pot shape, it's actually a relatively popular shape for buildings.

The Coffee Pot

approximately 720 West Pitt Street, Bedford, PA

The 18-feet-tall Coffee Pot was built in 1927 as a lunch spot adjoining a gas station; it became a bar 10 years later. It was purchased by the Bedford County Fair Association for $1 in 2003, and a local preservation group spent $80,000 to move it across the street and restore it. Photo by Flickr user Jeff Kubina.

Bob's Java Jive

2102 S Tacoma Way, Tacoma, WA 98409

A veterinarian built the 25-feet-tall Coffee Pot Restaurant in 1927. Since then, it has also served as a food drive-thru, a speakeasy, a karaoke venue, and a go-go bar. It was bought in 1955 by Bob & Lylabell Radonich, who transformed it into Bob's Java Jive, a Polynesian-themed music club complete with two drums-playing chimps—Java and Jive—and a house act, The Ventures, who later gained fame and were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The recently refurbished coffee pot is still open and hosting musical performances today. Photo by Flickr user Homini.

Cowgirls Espresso Stand

1216 A Street SE, Auburn, WA 98002

Auburn's stylized coffee pot-shaped coffee stand was originally a Perky's Coffee House. At some point it was transformed into a Cowgirls Espresso Stand, a chain of cow-spotted coffee stands with bikini-clad baristas; the Auburn one, though, is the only one shaped like a coffee pot. Photo via the Cowgirls Espresso website.

The Coffee Pot Roadhouse

2902 Brambleton Avenue, Roanoke, VA 24015

The Coffee Pot was built in 1936 and spent one year as a filling station and tea room before becoming a roadhouse in 1937; today, it's the only active roadhouse left in Roanoke Valley. The 15-feet-tall coffee pot has a furnace located in the room below, which causes steam to rise from the coffee pot spout. Past acts have included Willie Nelson, Ritchie Valens, and Root Boy Slim. Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Patriarca12.

Teapot Dome Service Station

14691 Yakima Valley Highway, Zillah, WA 98953

Zillah's teapot-shaped gas station was actually built in 1922 as a reminder of the Teapot Dome Scandal, and not because it served tea. The teapot operated as a full-service gas station for many years and was moved about a mile down the road in 1978—although the move was complicated when a car hit the station 5 days before the scheduled move, causing the teapot to cave in and requiring it to first be restructured before it could be moved. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places since 1985, the Teapot Dome Service Station hasn't been operational in several years, although the town of Zillah has purchased it and hopes to move the teapot into town to serve as a visitor's center. Photo via the City of Zillah.

MILK & SODA

The simple structure of a bottle was once a popular shape for dairy stands and ice cream shops, but it has since fallen out of use, with few still in operation.

Mary Lou's Milk Bottle Restaurant

802 West Garland Avenue, Spokane, WA 99205

In the 1930s, the owner of the Benewah Dairy Company, Paul E. Newport, built 6 or 7 milk bottle-shaped buildings in the Spokane area as kid-friendly places to sell the company's dairy products. Only 2 are still standing today, one of which became Mary Lou's Milk Bottle Restaurant and has been selling homemade ice cream since 1978. Unfortunately, the milk bottle and Ferguson's Café next door caught on fire in September 2011 and both have remained closed since, although both buildings' owners plan to re-open their establishments. Photo by Flickr user chrstphre campbell (chrstphre).

Benewah Dairy Milk Bottle

321 S Cedar Street, Spokane, WA 99201

The second remaining Benewah Dairy Milk Bottle building in Spokane has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places since 1986. The 38-feet-tall building is now privately owned; it's unclear what, if anything, the building is being used for today. Photo by the National Park Service, via Wikimedia Commons.

The Bottle

The Bottle, Auburn, AL 36830

From 1924 to 1933, Alabama laid claim to the "world's largest bottle." John F. Williams, the owner of the Nehi Bottling Company, constructed the 64-feet-tall bottle-shaped building, nicknamed the "Nehi Inn," that contained a grocery store and service station on the ground floor, with living quarters and storage on the second and third floors. From the observation windows in the neck of the bottle, visitors could see for miles. Before the Bottle burnt down in 1933, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt visited following a trip to Auburn. Although the building hasn't been around for almost 80 years, to this day the land it stood on is still listed as "The Bottle" on maps. Public domain photos via Wikipedia.

ALCOHOL

Few buildings that we can find are shaped like alcohol containers, although we're not sure why—a barrel-shaped bar seems pretty cool to us.

Tonneau Bistro & Bar

Teruya, Okinawa, Japan

The keg-shaped Tonneau Bistro & Bar (Japanese-only website), a.k.a. "The Barrel," is named for a French term, tonneau, meaning a large cask or keg. The izakaya (a compound word formed from i—to stay—and sakaya—sake shop) serves a wide variety of alcoholic beverages accompanied by food. Photo by Flickr user Joseph Hermon (iAphro).

The Bundaberg Barrel

147 Bargara Road, Bundaberg East, Queensland 4670

Bundaberg (Australia) is the home of Bundaberg Brewed Drinks, a soft drink manufacturer founded in 1960. In 2005, they built a tourist facility, the Bundaberg Barrel, that features a tour of the ginger beer making process, a 3D hologram adventure, a sampling bar with all their drink flavors, and a gift shop. Photo by Wikimedia Commons user BTBB.

Pirate's Cove

7417 NE Sandy Boulevard, Portland, OR 97213

The moonshine jug-shaped building on Portland's Sandy Boulevard was originally built in 1928 as a tire shop and repair garage. Since then, it's been known as the "Sandy Jug"—a former name and because it's a jug located on Sandy Blvd.—and has served as a luncheonette and a soda shop, among other businesses. Since 2002, it has been a nude strip club—the windows have been paneled shut—called the Pirate's Cove (website NSFW), with a pirate mural adorning an inside wall. Photo by Jeff Bernheisel of Living in Roseway.

27 examples of mimetic architecture not enough for you? Don’t worry, we’re not stopping the fun. Head over to our "Mimetic Architecture" board on Pinterest for more buildings shaped like food, animals, books, etc. And if you’ve seen a good one, let us know in the comments and we’ll add it to the board.

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February 3, 2012 - 6:10pm
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