Image: Earls Kitchen + Bar | earls.ca
The entrepreneur who started Earls Kitchen + Bar and whose family owns share of Cactus Club Cafe and JOEY Restaurants will be remembered as an industry giant.
Oct 10, 2019 - EightSix Staff
Largely credited with creating the hugely popular "premium casual" restaurant concept, Leroy Earl "Bus" (short for "Buster") Fuller started his family's Canadian restaurant empire in 1950s Alberta by opening a large number of successful A&W franchises. Building on this experience, he and his son Stanley created Earls' first location, Earls Tin Palace, in Edmonton in 1982. Just two years later, Earls North Vancouver Tin Palace opened in British Columbia.
In 1988, the family supported two former Earls employees with their own dreams of restaurant ownership and Cactus Club Cafe opened for service in North Vancouver (the Fuller family has majority ownership in the company today). Continuing with the family business, Leroy's other son, Jeff, launched JOEY in 1992, which has since expanded to 27 locations in Canada and the United States.
Bus Fuller continued to contribute to the family empire up until his passing, serving as Earls' Chairman. Privately owned and operated, Earls Kitchen + Bar has 66 restaurants in Canada and the United States.
The industry has lost a legend but his impact will not be forgotten.
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