Keulė Rūkė, a fast food shack world-famous for a piece of political graffiti featuring Trump and Putin, are expanding to Kaunas. Finally! The grand opening of the pulled pork and ribs joint is scheduled for Thursday, September 14th. The kaunastic branch of the chain is located at the Urmas shopping town (itself famous for its gigantic railway station-themed mural) in the industrial part of Kaunas.
Keulė Rūkė means something like ‘a pig had a smoke’ in English; the Lithuanian name is deliberately misspelled and represents the rugged, street-wise and down-to-earth attitude of the crew running the chain. They’re young, fearless and know how to make great fast food. The first shack was opened in the station district of Vilnius almost 3 years ago and experienced massive queues of people dying to taste their pulled pork burgers and ribs prepared the real American way (they even custom built a special oven!).
The company's love for America has many colours indeed; this is how the mural of Trump kissing Putin was born last spring (it was later vandalised and is now depicting Trump and Putin sharing a spliff). Its pictures travelled all over the internet and are frequently used to illustrate the two politicians by hundreds of media outlets. The original joint also features a ‘Mexican wall’ in the courtyard.
Photos by Keulė Rūkė
The crew then expanded to Gariūnai, a legendary 90s market near Vilnius; later, they opened a North Korea-themed restaurant in an outlet park in Vilnius. Now, Kaunas!
The bikini season is over anyway, right? Photo by Keulė Rūkė
‘Our kaunastic menu will be exactly the same we offer in our first joint’, says Rūta Jankauskaitė, the co-owner of Keulė Rūkė, who’s also responsible for marketing and communication. The latter has grown a steady army of 40 thousand followers on Facebook so the woman apparently knows what she’s doing. A photographer by training, she’s also responsible for the visual language of Keulė Rūkė. This means a lot of political satire involved in the interior of the joints. The Kaunas spot will, for example, feature a Trumpish looking pig painted on the ceiling of the space; as well as many other references to George Orwell’s legendary novels ‘Animal Farm’ and ‘1984’. Some pigs are equaler.
Rūta's husband Dominykas Čečkauskas is also a partner / Photo by the fam
Just in time for the expansion, Keulė Rūkė have released a special offer for kids called ‘Sick Meal’. It features a set of temporary tattoos. One sheet is called… kaunastic! Does it get any cooler than that?
Apparently, it doesn’t. So, make sure you stop at Keulė Rūkė (Pramonės pr. 16) next time you’re in Kaunas and dig into those ribs.