Puerto Rico Burger King Invented The Whopper Jr.

Puerto Rico Burger King
Burger King

That’s right, the Whopper Jr. first came from a Puerto Rico Burger King

According to Primera Hora, Cuban immigrant Luis Arenas Pérez created the Whopper Jr. in 1963 at a Puerto Rico Burger King in Carolina, Puerto Rico. Surprisingly, if there hadn’t been a significant production delay, the late Arenas Pérez never would have created the renowned burger. Oddly enolugh, the development of the Whopper Jr invention was the result of an accident.

Arenas Pérez was then the president of Caribbean Restaurants, which oversaw the Puerto Rico Burger King. Arenas Pérez spent a large portion of his career working for the fast food company, according to the company, which published a story about his passing in 2015.

Before coming to the United States in 1961, Arenas Pérez attended school in Havana. After a while, he worked for Chase Manhattan Bank before moving to Miami, Florida to work for Burger King. The businessman from Cuba relocated to Puerto Rico shortly after in order to open Burger King’s first location in Carolina. Arenas Pérez became the first-ever employee of Burger King in Puerto Rico, leading the company’s historic 1963 opening.

Puerto Rico Burger King
Burger King

There was one issue though. The baking molds needed to produce the original Whopper’s buns were still missing from the restaurant on the day of the big opening in the Carolina site. Arenas Pérez was quick to find a solution and ended up purchasing “smaller buns from local bakeries” to go along with the other components of the original Whopper. Then, the Whopper Jr invention was created.

Burger King made the decision to develop the concept after the Whopper Jr. became well-liked at the Puerto Rico Burger King. The company currently has the menu item available in all of their locations around the world.

Up until the end of his life, Arenas Pérez continued to work for Burger King. In 2008, the company recognized him as the first Latino into their Burger King Hall of Fame.


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