Val's Rapid Service – St. Cloud, Minnesota - Gastro Obscura

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Gastro Obscura

Val's Rapid Service

This lone survivor of a regional franchise still slings delicious burgers and colossal servings of fries. 


Val’s Rapid Service has been a St. Cloud institution for over 60 years. Originally a Pure Oil gas station, it was purchased by Val and Kathleen Henning in 1959. They remodeled the building into a burger, fry, and shake shop that has stayed true to that mission ever since. 

Originally known as “Val’s Rapid Serv,” the store was a part of the local Rapid Serv restaurant franchise. Today, Val’s is the only remaining Rapid Serv location. As the aging sign says, the small building is takeout only, and the ordering process is part of the fun. When it first opened, patrons would place their orders in the lobby by picking up a phone on the wall and calling the kitchen in the back. The system has evolved to feature computer screens that allow patrons to order. (This isn’t the only modern update: Customers can order online now, too.)

Val’s serves everyone from locals on their lunch breaks to loyal fans who stop by on their way North on Highway 10. The menu features no-fuss burgers, huge portions of delicious, salty fries, and over 20 flavors of milkshakes. It’s a time capsule of delicious flavors and retro style, and a must-try when you’re in St. Cloud.

Know Before You Go

The parking lot is very small and busy at lunch time, so just be aware of that. Val's is takeout only, so it's recommended to either eat in your car or, for a more enjoyable experience, take the food to Munsinger Clemens Gardens (a five-minute drive) and enjoy a picnic. Also, a small order of fries is a lot of fries.

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May 4, 2022

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